Both Frontier Airlines and United Airlines announced they will take steps to ensure at least one parent is seated with a booked child on the same itinerary for no additional charge.
New Policy Applies to Children of Certain Age Without Purchasing Seat Choices
Prior to the policy, flyers on a “basic economy” ticket or flying an ultra-low-cost-carrier would have to either purchase a seat selection to ensure they could sit with their child. These policies ran afoul of the Biden administration, after a multitude of complaints from families. As a result, several pieces of legislation attempted to change the rules, before the White House stepped in with their own proposal.
Under United’s policy, families with flyers 12 years old or younger will be seated with an adult in their party, even if the group booked a Basic Economy ticket. The airline credits a “series of investments in a new seat map feature” for the changes. Family travers will start to see more availability now, with the full policy change going into effect in March 2023. The airline’s premium products, including United Polaris, First, and Economy Plus are excluded from the changes.
At Frontier, the policy will apply to families flying with children 14 years and younger. At check-in time, the child will automatically be seated with at least one parent without an additional fee. Flyers always have the option to purchase a seat to guarantee their place on the plane with their child. The new policy compliments other family-friendly options, including pooling points with family and “Kids Fly Free” promotions through their subscription Discount Den.
Family Travel Remains Target for Airline Recovery
The push to attract family flyers remains a key target for airlines as they continue to push forward from the endemic. In December 2022, Southwest Airlines announced they would test moving family boarding forward, giving flyers with young children more access to seats aboard their aircraft.
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Source: frugal travel guy