Truth In Satire

Airlines Announce Reduced Summer Fares For People Willing To Fly In Overhead Bins

New overhead class fares start May 1st with discounts as high as 75% — major carriers expect brisk sales for no-frills travel option

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Darlene McGuire prepares for an upcoming flight from Boston to see her family in Ireland. She says she’ll save more than $500 by traveling in JetBlue’s “BinBlue” class. (Credit: macgregor)

With rising airfares grounding many would-be travelers, major U.S. airlines, including American, Delta, United, Southwest and JetBlue, are offering a no-frills option for the summer with dramatically reduced ticket prices.

“We realize that our new overhead class, ‘BinBlue,’ is not for everyone and may even cause minor joint dislocation,” said Jack Randall, a vice-president at JetBlue, “but it’s a great option for flexible flyers carrying only a single piece of luggage.”

Delta is calling its over-the-seat travel option, “Compactor Class,” while American is using “Scrunch Club,” and United has chosen the name “Packed Passages.”

Southwest is also joining the sardine can travel trend with their “Tight Tourist” option. All offer ticket prices that are 50–75% below standard coach fares.

“For years, Delta customers have been complaining about the high cost of traveling with children,” said Lauren Hodgkiss, Director of Flight Programs for the Atlanta-based airline. “We’re happy to announce today that with our ‘Compactor Class,’ children under three fly free, provided they fit securely in the overhead bin. Delta is proud to be the first airline in the industry to offer no-cost overhead options for passengers of toddler age and younger.”

Ms. Hodgkiss added that in some cases, young children will even be allowed to fly unaccompanied by an adult provided they are slightly sedated before departure.

The Federal Aviation Administration is reviewing safety standards for the various “overhead class” programs, but so far they all appear to be cleared for take-off.

And with major carriers anticipating strong sales for the no-frills travel option, it means that thousands of bendy, pliable passengers will be taking to the skies this summer.


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