Delta splits airline into 5 new classes— including a super-cheap one

In March of 2015, Delta will split its airplane cabins into five sections.

In March of 2015, Delta will split its airplane cabins into five sections.  (AP)

Forget about just business and economy classes.   

Starting in March, Delta Air Line will be splitting its aircraft into five different fare classes.

The sections will be based on prices and service and will feature three types of economy and two types of premium cabins.

"Whether a customer prioritizes the perks of Delta One or the value of Basic Economy, every seat comes with impeccable service and unmatched reliability," Delta Executive Vice President Glen Hauenstein said in a statement.

Here’s the breakdown:

Basic Economy

This is for the budget-conscious passenger.  These are the cheapest tickets but come with the most restrictions. Offered on select Delta flights, Basic Economy passengers won’t be able to choose seats in advance, make changes, fly stand-by, get refunds for unused tickets or receive upgrades -- even if you're a Medallion member. You're also the last to board the aircraft.  Passengers get complimentary non-alcoholic beverages and snacks, as well as access to WiFi and Delta Studio "when available." Passengers can also buy food off the Eats menu on flights longer than 900 miles.

Main Cabin

This is pretty much Economy as we know it today.  Main Cabin ticket holders will get the same complimentary beverage and snack and entertainment options as Basic Economy. You still get to choose your seat and there is some flexibility with changes or cancellations. When flying internationally, there’s a meal service, a choice of wine, beer, or spirits, and a sleeping kit.  

Delta Comfort +[image]

In Delta Comfort+, passengers will get priority boarding (after First Class and Delta One classes), dedicated overhead space, complimentary alcoholic beverages, premium snack options, and wider access to in-flight entertainment on flights over 900 miles. Those flying between New York and Los Angeles and San Francisco will also receive a complimentary pillow and blanket along with a snack wrap and frozen yogurt. The seats will also look different from Basic Economy and Main Cabin  and will have a quilted look with a red stripe.

Delta One

Formerly called Business Elite, the newly rebranded Delta One will have seats that go flat with linens from the Westin hotel chain, rights to board first, chef-curated menus, noise-reduction headsets and more.  There are even pre-flight alcoholic drinks, snacks included on flights longer than 250 miles and meals on flights longer than 900 miles. It will be available on international and long-haul domestic flights

First Class

Delta’s domestic flights will simply have First Class and will have many of the same amenities as Delta One. First Class travelers will also have access to a dedicated overhead compartment space, access to power outlets on many planes, as well as pre-flight and in-flight beer, wine, and spirits.

Delta isn't the only carrier working to upgrade services.  American Airlines recently announced it plans to spend $2 billion on new planes, seats, Wi-Fi, and electrical power outlets.