Is premium economy airfare worth the money?

As coach travel gets more cramped, airlines have added “premium economy” sections that promise more space and comfort — often at a substantially higher price.

Air carriers have discovered many travelers are willing to pay two or even three times the prevailing economy fare to escape the crowded confines of coach. The extra money is mostly profit for the airlines, which is why so many now offer this class of service.

But what you get can vary dramatically by airline. In my latest for the Associated Press, how to avoid a wasting money on an upgrade that just isn’t worth it.

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  1. Mary Ellen Waithe says

    Yes, the Premium Economy, even the Business/First (at 3x the cost of Economy) is worth it so that I travel in enough comfort to spend hours working on my laptop and hours sleeping while having ample space for food and beverage service. On flights of more than an hour or two, my feet swell to the point of pain when I at last can start to walk. I also risk DVT, which with a few minor heart conditions, is an increased risk of not being able to really elevate my legs. The extra cost gives me my first two days of visit/vacay as usable days when I can walk unassisted instead of waiting for my feet to return to normal size.

    • Liz Weston says

      I agree…when you’re getting what you pay for. The problem is that there’s no standard definition of what premium economy includes, and some airlines fall short.