Posts: 659
Joined: Mon Aug 06, 2001 9:22 pm

Classes On BMI

Tue Jul 30, 2002 12:08 am


I just booked some tickets for a BMI flight between LHR and MAN.
I purchased one using my Virgin Flyer miles through Virgin, and the other directly from BMI.

The tickets have different classes one is 'T', and the other is 'W'. Also, one ticket has ECONOMY printed on it, and the one issued by Virgin does not....

Did Virgin issue me a Biz Class ticket, and BMI an economy??

Can anyone explain the classes?


Posts: 2310
Joined: Tue Jan 09, 2001 12:03 pm

RE: Classes On BMI

Tue Jul 30, 2002 12:24 am

Each different fare level has a booking class assigned to it. For instance, the businessman sitting next to you may have a ticket booked in 'M' class, which is fully refundable, flexible, and expensive, whereas you may be travelling on an 'L' class ticket, which might be nonrefundable and very cheap. 'Y' class is always the highest economy fare - fully refundable, with no charge for amendments.

If airlines didn't have these differing fare 'buckets', it would make accounting very difficult!

A reservations agent for XYZ airlines might have the following fares on their screen for a London to New York ticket.

Y 1000 fully refundable, changes free of charge
M 800 fully refundable, $100 per change
H 600 50% refundable, $300 per change
L 300 non refundable, changes require upgrading to H fare
W 150 non refundable, no changes permitted

The airlines route control department may have assigned 30 seats in XYZ's 747 as 'W' class, 50 as 'L' class, 100 as 'H' class, 150 as 'M' class, and the remainder as 'Y' class. That's how the airline makes a profit on every flight - by making sure not every passenger is paying the rockbottom, lossmaking 'W' fare. So when 30 people have bought a W fare level, anyone else wanting to buy a ticket on the flight will have to buy an 'L' class fare or higher.

I hope this makes sense. Sorry for rabbiting on a bit!
Posts: 659
Joined: Mon Aug 06, 2001 9:22 pm

RE: Classes On BMI

Tue Jul 30, 2002 12:52 am

No, dont apologise! that really helpful Thanks!

Does anyone know how BMI British Midland's structure works?
Posts: 3686
Joined: Mon Nov 15, 1999 4:51 am

RE: Classes On BMI

Tue Jul 30, 2002 1:05 am

Your aircraft, likely an Airbus, has about 20 Business class seats (5 abreast).
If you have any status with your Virgin or possible BMI or any Star Alliance card, you will get upgraded easily. I had the cheapest possible R/T this weekend AMS-LHR (70 Euro + tax) and my silver United FF card made me upgraded -I didn't bother to ask as I felt I didn't deserve any frills for this price- on both sectors, enjoying nice china plates with fruit and salad meals and drinks in seat 1A both ways.
nobody has ever died from hard work, but why take the risk?
Posts: 3544
Joined: Sun Oct 14, 2001 7:26 am

RE: Classes On BMI

Tue Jul 30, 2002 8:08 am

"Your aircraft, likely an Airbus, has about 20 Business class seats (5 abreast)."

All depends on the booked load, as to how many seats will be allocated to Business class. Bmi have a moveable cabin devider so can increase/decrease the amount of seats depending on the booked loads in each cabin for each particular flight. (the curtain row is set by the Dm on shift the previous night.)

Minimum will be 1st, 3 rows, but is usually more depending on flight time. The teatime flights will almost all be Business seats, whilst a mid afternoon flight will be mainly econ seats.

The only differance in service o/b is what you get to eat. In business you get a 3 course meal (snack) served on proper plates and a seat thats about 2 inches wider, whilst in econ you get a pre packed sandwich, and a slightly smaller seat. In both classes, the rest of the service (and leg room) is the same.

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