A recent post on 90 Percent of Everything looked at dirty tricks designers use to make people do stuff and asked for examples of bad design on websites which was actually calculated bad design, aimed at making you do stuff you don’t necessarily want to. The examples poured in, and are well worth taking a look at. In a way, it doesn’t seem that surprising when budget airlines take advantage of people in this way; they’re not nice companies, and they don’t care. It’s their business model. People associate cheap with nasty, and certain companies have realised that it works in reverse: be nasty to customers, and they assume your product must be cheap. And people like cheap, so they may be prepared to put up with nasty.
But I suspect that your company would like to be seen as a respectable, helpful one, and it’s important therefore that you never succumb to the temptation of signing people up to things without making sure they fully understand what they’re signing up for. In the long run, it really benefits nobody.