Not enough cash for premium cabins? How about Premium Economy?

The fight for high revenue passengers within the airline industry is swelling for ages now. While for a long time airlines were facing a significant decrease in numbers of paying premium travelers in the highly lucrative business travel market, today airlines show off new cabin innovations, that appeal more and more to a demanding yet very price-concious clientel.

Best example is Germany´s Lufthansa. The carrier completed the implementation of a fourth class of service aboard its intercontinental  fleet of Boeing B747-8s and B747-400s, Airbus A380s, A330s and A340s a year ago: the Premium Economy Class.  At the same time, the airline, that flew for centuries one of the largest Business cabins in the industry, has started to scale down the numbers of its luxury seats on board. Some touristic destinations, like Tampa or Panama City, are even serviced without offering a First Class product. More and more people want to travel in style, but are not willing to pay the full fare.

And the trend is running high.

Today´s air travelers are spoiled. Because there is tons of choice on the market with no money to waste. And coach is not like coach, that we all know! But since not everyone has the cash to sit up front on every flight (I know, I don´t), why not considering sitting in-between? When it comes to air travel, no one likes to have a middle seat, right? And the airlines are reacting: Four-class intercontinental service is on the climb.

Attention though: Not every “upgraded” Economy Class promises real advantages in opposition to the basic product. Some airlines charge extra for just a little bit of more legroom, while others offer an entirely upgraded seat, enhanced free baggage allowances and other complimentary services on the ground, as well as inflight.

So before you book, it is recommendable to check what you can expect onboard and if you are willing to pay extra money for it.

I have put together a list of airlines that fly Premium Economy Class as a class of its own. Better seats, better service, better extras. Those airlines, that only offer extra legroom while the rest of the product remains the same, have been left out. Just click on the desired name and you will be automatically redirected to all the information that you may require: Who flies what and where, and most importantly, what is in stock for you!

In my opinion, a fantastic way to compromise between comfort and budget on international flights. I can do without champagne for 12 hours, but the luxury of space and luggage-freedom become more and more indispensible for me when I hit the road. No-frills may be cool for domestic, long distance definitely calls for a little more though. Because we are worth it…

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