wardialer
Topic Author
Posts: 1166
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Paying extra Money for Seating??

Sat Feb 11, 2017 9:27 am

I got my airline tickets and I am very shocked at this and I am really angry.
I told them that I wanted to take a window seat and my ticket agent said, well, this is a new thing where I would have to pay extra money to reserve a seat.
She also told me that this goes for every airline.
The trip is from Europe to the US.

So, my question is, is this a new thing where people have to pay extra money just to reserve a seat?

The airline in question is SWISS, but I don't know if all airlines are doing this silly policy or not.

Can someone please confirm?

This is so ridiculous...
 
Dogbreath
Posts: 180
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Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Sat Feb 11, 2017 9:45 am

I'm afraid so. This has been happening for a while now, and as far as I know is typical on most Airlines today (from LCC to Legacy Carriers). Someone out there might enlighten us - if not.
It's not only window seats affected here. Some want aisle seats and exit rows seats. Me personally - I want to choose as far away as possible from those bulkhead baby cots as I can. But still usually end up with whining kids and their precious parents near me.
In a nutshell, you pay at the booking stage for the seat you want. If you don't, then 24 hours before departure (when you can check in online), you'll be able to choose a seat of your liking - assuming there are unsold seats available.
So if you truly want that seat, I'm afraid you'll have to pay.

Welcome to the age of supply and demand. If someone truly wants it they will have to pay!!
Truth, Honour, Loyalty
 
coolian2
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Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Sat Feb 11, 2017 9:57 am

Wait.....you're only just learning this?
Q300/ATR72-600/737-200/-300/-400/-700/-800/A320/767-200/-300/757-200/777-300ER/
747-200/-300/-400/ER/A340-300/A380-800/MD-83/CRJ-700/-900
 
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Aeroflot777
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Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Sat Feb 11, 2017 9:57 am

wardialer wrote:
Can someone please confirm?


This has been the case for quite a while now on quite a few major carriers both in the US and Europe. Nothing new!
 
alggag
Posts: 177
Joined: Tue Apr 20, 2010 6:34 am

Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Sat Feb 11, 2017 10:39 am

Maybe it's because I grew up on WN and they're still my go to airline now but I don't see what the big deal is. Whenever I'm on an an airline that charges for picking a seat I treat it like being back on WN and make sure to check in as close as possible to 24 hours in advance and have had always had good luck selecting decent seats.
 
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PatrickZ80
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Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Sat Feb 11, 2017 11:11 am

But please note that not every airline uses the 24 hour limit for online check-in. Ryanair for example offers free online check-in up to a week in advance (with random assigned seat, you got to pay to pick one), and you can even check-in before that if you pay for it (and that includes seat picking).

Last time I flew SAS the seat picking was free, but that was a few years ago so it might have changed in the meanwhile. Other airlines mostly charge for seat picking. Still I don't see the problem, a seat is a seat no matter where it's located. You'll get to your destination anyway, and maybe you can change seats with someone once you're on board.
 
wardialer
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Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Sat Feb 11, 2017 12:41 pm

I am not huge traveler and the last time I travelled abroad was about 3.5 yrs ago.
This is indeed new to me. Its a SCAM..
I call it a scam, because the base price of the airfare was around 700 dollars, which is great, but scamming people into dishing out extra cash for seats is kind of a let down...

This is what airlines do, is they scam people. I am surprised people aren't complaining.
 
TonyBurr
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Joined: Tue Mar 27, 2001 1:00 pm

Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Sat Feb 11, 2017 1:40 pm

We can complain all we want, but the airlines can pretty much do what they want, they all do the same thing. On American airlines long haul if you purchase your tickets far in advance you can pick a seat for free. You do know that on many short haul flights you have to pay for your baggage? On long haul international you generally do not have to pay for luggage.
 
eielef
Posts: 558
Joined: Tue Oct 09, 2007 4:07 am

Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Sat Feb 11, 2017 1:41 pm

I completly agree with you. Is another way to take more money from travelers. There is no difference on traveling on a window seat or an aisle seat, or in the first row or in the last row. But as people has certain preferences (e.g. emergency exit, it has more room space but wait, i'm 1m88 tall and obese, and I fit perfectly in even the smallest planes, like CRJ200 or B737-8AS from Ryanair. You just fit. And yo are seating there for just a few hours, is not a big deal. Some months ago, i bought three tickets together (for my parents and I) and we thought, as we bought them together, we would be flying all three together. No, we were not. I was sent to 29E, mum was by 6D and dad at 17B. The plane was almost empty and as soon as doors were closed, we moved to a empty row all for us three. It is stupid, and I hope you never pay for that. Is a swindle, a con.
Cheers
Eielef @ATL
 
mmo
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Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Sat Feb 11, 2017 5:27 pm

eielef wrote:
I completly agree with you. Is another way to take more money from travelers. There is no difference on traveling on a window seat or an aisle seat, or in the first row or in the last row. But as people has certain preferences (e.g. emergency exit, it has more room space but wait, i'm 1m88 tall and obese, and I fit perfectly in even the smallest planes, like CRJ200 or B737-8AS from Ryanair. You just fit. And yo are seating there for just a few hours, is not a big deal. Some months ago, i bought three tickets together (for my parents and I) and we thought, as we bought them together, we would be flying all three together. No, we were not. I was sent to 29E, mum was by 6D and dad at 17B. The plane was almost empty and as soon as doors were closed, we moved to a empty row all for us three. It is stupid, and I hope you never pay for that. Is a swindle, a con.
Cheers
Eielef @ATL



Just out of curiosity, why didn't you request different seats when you checked in or at the gate? Seems pretty simple to me!
If we weren't all crazy we'd all go insane!
 
Kent350787
Posts: 883
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Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Sat Feb 11, 2017 10:10 pm

JAL allowed me to choose free (may have been PE specific though). QF has been pay for seat selection on booking for at least 10 years. Travelling with kids we've been effectively forced to pay to travel together as a family.

And, yes, check your airline's web-check rules for timing if you don't want to pay.
 
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Keith2004
Posts: 179
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Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Sun Feb 12, 2017 7:18 am

If seats are free at check in, just be sure to check in as soon as it is available, that's what I do when I fly in Y. I even put a reminder in my phone.
Most European airlines do this, its mildly annoying, but optimal seats are still available for FREE at check in
 
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XAM2175
Posts: 464
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Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Sun Feb 12, 2017 8:31 am

Kent350787 wrote:
QF has been pay for seat selection on booking for at least 10 years


... only for Discount Economy fare buckets on international flights, though.
 
eielef
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Joined: Tue Oct 09, 2007 4:07 am

Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Sun Feb 12, 2017 11:34 am

mmo wrote:
Just out of curiosity, why didn't you request different seats when you checked in or at the gate? Seems pretty simple to me!

There is no one you can request. The system assigns the seats randomly, though it is clear we are all in the same booking and dad and I have the last name and last name (confusing for airlines, I believe).
It was a short flight, and we wouldn't have minded flying in different rows, but the system is so that next time you feel better paying as Kent350787 said, even in his case traveling with children.
 
mmo
Posts: 1015
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Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Sun Feb 12, 2017 5:56 pm

eielef wrote:
mmo wrote:
Just out of curiosity, why didn't you request different seats when you checked in or at the gate? Seems pretty simple to me!

There is no one you can request. The system assigns the seats randomly, though it is clear we are all in the same booking and dad and I have the last name and last name (confusing for airlines, I believe).
It was a short flight, and we wouldn't have minded flying in different rows, but the system is so that next time you feel better paying as Kent350787 said, even in his case traveling with children.


But you could have asked at the main check in desk where luggage is checked or at the gate. Happens all the time!!
If we weren't all crazy we'd all go insane!
 
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PatrickZ80
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Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Sun Feb 12, 2017 7:50 pm

eielef wrote:
Some months ago, i bought three tickets together (for my parents and I) and we thought, as we bought them together, we would be flying all three together. No, we were not. I was sent to 29E, mum was by 6D and dad at 17B.


Very logical. Seats are not assigned upon booking, they are assigned upon check-in. Either you check in online and pick your seats or you check in at the airport and ask for seats together there. Of course there is a chance that you'll have to pay to pick a seat, that's just the way it works today. But it was stupid to assume when you booked together you'd be seated together. That's just not how it works.
 
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LTU932
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Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Sun Feb 12, 2017 8:04 pm

I had to pay in advance for my seats on KL when I flew HAM-AMS-PTY (seat reservation for the CM connection PTY-SJO was free). I did get a discount for making and paying that reservation online.

On BA, I had to pay for the seat on HAM-LHR and later LHR-HAM at check-in. Curiously, I was refunded the money for LHR-HAM though. At LH, I remember you can choose the seat for free at check-in, no idea if that still exists in regular economy though. UA did allow me in 2015 to reserve my seats for free in advance for my HAM-EWR-SJO flight and return.

Bottom line, this unfortunately is nothing uncommon in regular economy these days, especially now with the coming of basic economy. It is no scam.
Sometimes the only thing more dangerous than a question is an answer. - Ferengi Rule of Acquisition 208
 
aeromoe
Posts: 170
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Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Mon Feb 13, 2017 5:44 pm

I booked a trip on Korean Air for late March 2017 and I got to reserve seats at booking time for free. Some offer it for free at booking...some at a specified time out. On US airlines I don't mind paying for a seat in advance if there are window seats available....I prefer not to have an aisle or middle seat. I just accept it as part of the travelling process now.
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MartijnNL
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Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Mon Feb 13, 2017 7:17 pm

eielef wrote:
I was sent to 29E, mum was by 6D and dad at 17B. The plane was almost empty and as soon as doors were closed, we moved to a empty row all for us three.

Ridiculous. Pathetic behaviour of the airline. Good that you moved to an empty row.

But it makes for a good story at a party ;)
Last edited by MartijnNL on Mon Feb 13, 2017 7:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
MartijnNL
Posts: 86
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Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Mon Feb 13, 2017 7:27 pm

PatrickZ80 wrote:
eielef wrote:
But it was stupid to assume when you booked together you'd be seated together. That's just not how it works.

Strange. I have always been seated next to my travel partner. Every time I checked in for a flight we were assigned seats together. Never did I have to ask an airline employee to give us seats next to each other. Or have to select them at a check in kiosk. Not once. And we're probably talking about more than one hundred flights. I think it is only stupid what the airline did to eielef.
 
KentB27
Posts: 129
Joined: Fri Oct 02, 2015 2:20 pm

Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Wed Feb 15, 2017 4:47 pm

This has been going on in the airline industry for years now. It's mainly for people who want to pay extra money to pick a seat they actually want during booking, instead of risking getting a crappy seat at the gate or check in.
 
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ER757
Posts: 2656
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Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Wed Feb 15, 2017 5:24 pm

Most of my flying is on AS - I always choose my seat at time of ticket purchase and there has never been an extra charge for seat selection. Never paid on HA either.
 
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DABYT
Posts: 95
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Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Wed Feb 15, 2017 6:19 pm

wardialer wrote:
I am not huge traveler and the last time I travelled abroad was about 3.5 yrs ago.
This is indeed new to me. Its a SCAM..
I call it a scam, because the base price of the airfare was around 700 dollars, which is great, but scamming people into dishing out extra cash for seats is kind of a let down...

This is what airlines do, is they scam people. I am surprised people aren't complaining.


Obviously i would prefer seat reservations for free on all airlines but as many here have stated this is quite normal. Unfortunately flying is not what it was 20 or more years ago but on the other hand it isn't that expensive like it was 20 years ago either. IMHO calling it scam is an exaggeration. It's not as the thread title suggests that airlines charge you if you want to have a seat on board. They charge you if you want to select your preferred seat in advance. Again, as others stated before, at check in you can choose your seat.

Anyway there still are some airlines left that don't charge like QR, for example. Or you could buy premium economy, business or first where seat selection is free when purchasing the ticket.
 
jetwet1
Posts: 2126
Joined: Thu Jun 14, 2007 4:42 am

Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Thu Feb 16, 2017 10:17 pm

wardialer wrote:

The airline in question is SWISS, but I don't know if all airlines are doing this silly policy or not.
.


I flew for the first time in years with Swiss last year, the first series of flights were for a family vacation in Y (the rest were in J for business) and yes, we had to pay extra for specific seats and there was no way I was doing 11 hours in a Y seat with a 32 in seat pitch, so we payed to move to row 23 (bulkhead) I think it was $50 per seat each way......

A lot of airlines have been charging for bulkhead/exit rows for a while, and of course BA charges for seats in J (unless it's a full fare seat) so yeah, sorry, it sucks, but let's be honest here, $700 rt LAX-ZRH-LAX is asking to be nickle and dimed.
 
BuildingMyBento
Posts: 99
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Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Fri Feb 17, 2017 4:24 am

I didn't pay too much care when Ryanair first introduced me to the idea. Then, US-based carriers started doing this, but as long as there was an aisle seat available somewhere, I didn't need to pay.

Though, now that EK has started to charge for seats, I'm wondering which carrier is next.
 
Scinfaxi
Posts: 11
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Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Sat Feb 18, 2017 10:07 am

Obviously i would prefer seat reservations for free on all airlines...


Right :D Can you imagine the amount of ballast that stations would have to buy to make aircraft like Q400s/CRJs etc trim properly because everyone has this obsession with seated at the front? :D Not to mention the extra fuel penalties :)

The beauty of charging people for seats prior to check-in is that (where I work at least) maybe only 20% or so pre-book specific seats. And then just prior to check-in opening, we block off seats on the seat map to make sure aircraft is in optimum trim zone for takeoff, cruise and landing.
 
corocks
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Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Mon Feb 20, 2017 10:17 pm

I have never in my life had to pay to reserve a seat while flying within the US on one of the major airlines. On a LCC I fully understand. I just booked tickets on BA from IAH-LHR and cannot believe you have to pay to reserve seats. I fully understand inter-Europe but on long haul trans-Atlantic that seems a little much. I looked to even upgrade to premium economy and the seat reservations are even more!
 
Wednesdayite
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Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Tue Feb 21, 2017 12:43 am

Yeah. I've just been stung over $300 by BA to reserve 3 seats on a DEN-LHR return.

I say stung. I was fully aware at the time of booking, but with a young child my wife insists that we travel direct. And as UA scrapped its DEN-LHR route years ago, BA is the only direct option.

So I feel stung. As soon as our daughter is older and can handle the extra time that a connection brings, we'll be back on United metal and avoiding those disgusting BA fees.
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simfanatic
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Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Wed Feb 22, 2017 8:53 am

I had that experience 2 weeks ago on AB on TXL-AUH. I already knew that their XL-Seats come at a price of 89€ per leg, but their preferred seats (Window seats for instance) also come at a whopping 59€! So I woke up exactly the minute Online Check-In opened and weirdly there were no window seats left, so I (slightly disgruntled) settled for an aisle. However when opening their mobile app, I could still change my seats and voila, almost all window seats were still open. So while I was lucky with that glitch there, it's still kinda sad for them to block all window seats in order to sell more of those ridiculously expensive seat reservations.
Don't be a fool, think about what you're writing!
 
ual777
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Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Sat Mar 11, 2017 7:09 pm

I like UA for this reason. Buy a standard economy ticket and pick seats at time of booking. If Economy Plus is half empty you can pay extra but get the legroom too.
It is always darkest before the sun comes up.
 
JonathanRP
Posts: 54
Joined: Tue Sep 20, 2016 7:38 pm

Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Sun Mar 12, 2017 12:04 am

SQ allows you to reserve a seat for free when booking (And I booked 5 months before travelling) gave myself window seats on every leg of LHR-SIN-SYD-SIN-LHR. They charged a fixed 75USD per leg to book a "preferred seat" which seemed to be those on exits or with additional legroom (such as the seats with no seat in front) window seats were not deemed "preferred", which is a bonus for any avgeek I guess! Note: I flew on their cheapest possible Economy fares (completely non-flexible and no changes/cancellations allowed etc) and you could check-in 48 hours before your flight time, but that was irrelevant as I picked my seats long before check in.
 
DaveFly
Posts: 141
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Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Mon Mar 13, 2017 4:25 pm

I must be lucky. My flights in the last twelve months have been on United, JetBlue, Hawaiian, and El Al. I chose my preferred window or aisle seats at the time of booking. No extra charge. And I got the seats I had reserved.
717,727,737,747,757,767,777,
L1011,DC8,DC9,DC10,
A319,320,321,330,340,
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usxguy
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Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Wed Mar 15, 2017 6:14 am

I stick with Alaska partners and have never paid for a seat assignment. Gold 75K status gets me quite a bit free, including Main Cabin Extra on American!
xx
 
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ojjunior
Posts: 304
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Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Wed Mar 22, 2017 12:05 pm

Well, I have some TAP legs on the way and surprisingly some are free seat assignment thru their website and some aren't. All are intl legs, what's the rule then?
 
VSMUT
Posts: 895
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Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Wed Mar 22, 2017 6:10 pm

wardialer wrote:
I am not huge traveler and the last time I travelled abroad was about 3.5 yrs ago.
This is indeed new to me. Its a SCAM..
I call it a scam, because the base price of the airfare was around 700 dollars, which is great, but scamming people into dishing out extra cash for seats is kind of a let down...

This is what airlines do, is they scam people. I am surprised people aren't complaining.


It's not a scam, because they never promised or sold you anything other than transporting you from A to B (and since this is Swiss, maybe also a free chocolate and drinks on various conditions).

I just check in online 24 hours before the flight and select my seat completely free of charge. I suggest you do the same.

PatrickZ80 wrote:
Last time I flew SAS the seat picking was free, but that was a few years ago so it might have changed in the meanwhile.


They have changed, today it's pay for the seat or wait until 24 hours prior to the flight. I don't think any mainline airlines in Europe let you pick seats for free more than 24 hours before the flight nowadays.
 
aeromoe
Posts: 170
Joined: Fri Dec 08, 2006 8:34 am

Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Wed Mar 22, 2017 11:35 pm

JonathanRP wrote:
SQ allows you to reserve a seat for free when booking (And I booked 5 months before travelling) gave myself window seats on every leg of LHR-SIN-SYD-SIN-LHR. They charged a fixed 75USD per leg to book a "preferred seat" which seemed to be those on exits or with additional legroom (such as the seats with no seat in front) window seats were not deemed "preferred", which is a bonus for any avgeek I guess! Note: I flew on their cheapest possible Economy fares (completely non-flexible and no changes/cancellations allowed etc) and you could check-in 48 hours before your flight time, but that was irrelevant as I picked my seats long before check in.


Interesting because I've flown SQ twice since our late November 2016 and in both cases when booking nearly ALL the seats were blocked at booking except the preferred. On the first trip it was roundtrip SFO-SIN on the A350 outbound and 777-300ER return via HKG. On the A350 I chose to pre-book and pay for the preferred seat 48K so I'd be on the right side of the aircraft and right behind door 3R. I didn't have a seat in front of me but it was kind of a tight squeeze to maneuver around the chap in front of me. For the return on the 777-300ER I chose the seat at SFO before I boarded for Singapore and got like 49A then 45A from HKG since 49A was already booked HKG-SFO.

On the January flights I did JFK-FRA-SIN on A380 flight 25 and requested window seats like 48 hr prior to departure. For the SIN-SFO A350 nonstop I chose./paid for 48A at booking for the same reason as above...more legroom and no one in front. Curious thing about that booking was I persuaded a co-worker to accompany me on the trip and when we booked his flight there was ONE non-preferred window seat showing available so I chose that for him at booking.

Aeromoe
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JonathanRP
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Re: Paying extra Money for Seating??

Thu Mar 23, 2017 10:36 am

aeromoe wrote:
JonathanRP wrote:
SQ allows you to reserve a seat for free when booking (And I booked 5 months before travelling) gave myself window seats on every leg of LHR-SIN-SYD-SIN-LHR. They charged a fixed 75USD per leg to book a "preferred seat" which seemed to be those on exits or with additional legroom (such as the seats with no seat in front) window seats were not deemed "preferred", which is a bonus for any avgeek I guess! Note: I flew on their cheapest possible Economy fares (completely non-flexible and no changes/cancellations allowed etc) and you could check-in 48 hours before your flight time, but that was irrelevant as I picked my seats long before check in.


Interesting because I've flown SQ twice since our late November 2016 and in both cases when booking nearly ALL the seats were blocked at booking except the preferred. On the first trip it was roundtrip SFO-SIN on the A350 outbound and 777-300ER return via HKG. On the A350 I chose to pre-book and pay for the preferred seat 48K so I'd be on the right side of the aircraft and right behind door 3R. I didn't have a seat in front of me but it was kind of a tight squeeze to maneuver around the chap in front of me. For the return on the 777-300ER I chose the seat at SFO before I boarded for Singapore and got like 49A then 45A from HKG since 49A was already booked HKG-SFO.

On the January flights I did JFK-FRA-SIN on A380 flight 25 and requested window seats like 48 hr prior to departure. For the SIN-SFO A350 nonstop I chose./paid for 48A at booking for the same reason as above...more legroom and no one in front. Curious thing about that booking was I persuaded a co-worker to accompany me on the trip and when we booked his flight there was ONE non-preferred window seat showing available so I chose that for him at booking.

Aeromoe


Perhaps you were just unlucky and all the seats had been booked already? Just by chance. I remember when booking 5 months prior to the flight, being presented with the seat map and seeing a substantial number of seats had already been selected. I can only assume, due to the length of my flight, a lot of window seats were still available (seems obvious, aisle access being a priority for a lot of travellers on flights over 10hrs). Also, I noticed that none of the "preferred" seats had yet been selected at this time either.

I chose 75A for my first A380 flight (LHR-SIN), it was upper deck and I always prefer travelling on the left side of the aircraft (I was also the very first person to board the plane, even before the premium cabins!) All the other legs, on both 77W and A380 I chose A seats, non-preferred, but far enough away from both the baby-specific seating at the front of the economy cabin and the toilets both front and rear.

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