United is offering 35% off economy plus (extra legroom) seat assignments for June travel if you pay by May 27. Not valid for basic economy tickets.
They actually ran 50% off for travel during the second half of March. United, it seems, upsells to economy plus seats the same way that American Airlines sells miles. They maintain a high regular price so they can frequently offer seats at a discount.
United Gold elites and higher can confirm extra legroom seats at booking, Silvers at check-in if still available. Economy Plus seats generally mean the ability to open a laptop inflight.
Unlike at American and Delta, United’s Economy Plus doesn’t offer free drinks (on longer flights Delta’s ‘Comfort+’ also includes snacks).
Don’t try to just grab an open economy plus seat on the plane. When passengers try to change seats on United, the airline’s flight attendants stand on the bridge between seats declaring “none shall pass.” It used to be that passengers could change to any empty seat in the cabin, but now the airline charges extra for some seats in economy and flight attendants are the airline’s revenue protection force.
I was on a flight that delayed because the last passenger to board wanted to change seats from 24D to the empty 7C in coach. A flight attendant quoted him $63. He initially said he’d pay but then changed his mind.
One flight attendant said to another, “When I go to the car lot to buy and buy a Honda I don’t drive off in a Mercedes just because it was there.” She congratulated herself to her colleague on the analogy, although she may have been the first person ever to compare United Economy Plus to a Mercedes.