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Travel Tip: More Airlines Add Premium Economy Seats

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Image Source: Singapore Airlines

Image Source: Singapore Airlines

It’s been a longstanding tradition for the airlines to charge for better seating and more service. Now that option is becoming more common in coach.

Alaska Airlines just launched its preferred seating category, which gives you access to the bulkhead and exit row. That also comes with a free drink and priority boarding. It starts at $15, but higher-tier loyalty members get the first chance to reserve them.

Singapore Airlines, which tends to focus on long haul flights and high-paying premium passengers, has launched its new premium economy class. The seat pitch—or the space in between seat backs—is 38 inches compared to a standard 32, and comes with a leg-rest, champagne, and in-flight meals that you can pre-order.

WestJet is adding premium-economy seating in September, which will involve removing middle seats in some rows.

Other airlines are expanding existing premium products. Lufthansa has now installed premium economy on half of its long-haul fleet, or 53 of its aircraft.

Bottom line: These seats are a way to improve your flying experience, but it always comes at a cost.

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