You’ve heard of Basic Economy. Now get ready for Basic Business.
Emirates has just rolled out a new slate of business class “special” fares that do away with some of the perks of business travel (like lounge access) in exchange for a lower price. As originally reported by One Mile At a Time, this new class of business fares allows customers to essentially just buy a far more comfortable, fully reclining seat (aka a bed) without the famed perks that Emirates offers full-paying business travelers.
An Emirates spokesperson confirmed the news to Fast Company.
American, Delta, and United airlines have all added basic economy fares to their planes, but Emirates is the first to offer basic business. Under the new fare, business travelers don’t get driven by Emirates chauffeurs, can’t be upgraded to Emirates’s reportedly remarkable first class, and they can only choose their seats after check-in opens.
Emirates has been considering the new fare class since 2016. It finally made the decision to offer lower-cost business class “after carefully reviewing the evolving travel preferences of [their] valued customers,” according to an email from an Emirates spokesperson. The new fares, which have been available since June 10, will only “be offered on certain routes based on seasonal trends in travel demand.”
It’s a move that should appeal to travelers who want to, say, sleep on a long-haul flight, as well as to corporations that want their employees to be comfortable on work trips, but don’t want to pay full fare for business. Of course, while Emirates is stripping out some of the perks for those flying on its Business Class “Special” fares, travelers will still have priority boarding, free checked bags, and the ability to sleep on board without their knees in their face.