Economy class (sometimes also termed coach or standard class) refers to the most basic and least expensive travel class offered on commercial passenger airlines, trains, and certain other modes of transportation (though sometimes there’s also a basic economy class, which is even more restricted and low-priced).
On aircraft, economy class is the section with the highest seating density, prioritizing affordability over luxury or additional amenities. Seats are generally arranged in rows with narrower seat widths and pitch (the space between rows) compared to premium cabins.
While amenities can vary among transportation providers and also depend on route duration, standard offerings in economy often include basic meals or snacks, in-flight entertainment on longer flights, and overhead storage compartments. Additional services or comforts that might be available for an extra fee or as part of a sub-category like economy plus or premium economy include
- extended legroom,
- priority boarding,
- greater baggage allowance,
- ticket refunds or cancellations,
- seat selection, or
- enhanced meal choices.
Airlines and other transportation providers often rely on the volume of economy-class sales to sustain operations while using premium cabin offerings to boost profit margins.