TRAVELERS disagree on whether it’s fair to “save seats” on airlines that don’t allocate a specific seat.
Southwest Airlines is a well-known US airline that has an “open seat” policy, meaning passengers can choose their seat upon boarding.
Boarding order can depend on a number of factors, including ticket time, when you checked in, and whether you are a frequent flyer with the airline.
However, passengers who are allowed to board earlier often reserve seats for their friends and family, which has sparked debate.
Traveler Amy Alkon, who covers similar topics in her book Good Manners for Nice People Who Sometimes Say F***, said people complain because it “instills a sense of freeloading and cheating.”
But others said they think the practice is unfair.
Passenger Tom Ward said he was prevented from choosing an exit row seat because a woman who boarded ahead of him reserved the entire row for her family, who had not paid for early boarding.
He told the Wall Street Journal that such passengers were “curvy” and would never do it themselves.
He added: “I would have to tell dozens of people not to sit in this seat.”
And passenger Abby Hopper said she ended up with a “screaming match” after trying to take an aisle seat, only for the person in the middle, who said she would save it for her friend.
Andrew Watterson, Southwest’s Chief Operating Officer, commented, “It is a business decision based on input from our customers.
“And right now, customers tell us every time we ask, ‘We prefer it that way.’ If customers tell us they want it differently, we will change it that way.”
Flight attendant Allie Malis said families wishing to sit together should speak to the crew before boarding, saying: “It puts a lot of pressure on us to ask passengers a favor to switch and it’s a very time sensitive one Part of the flight when we “reboard.”
A former flight attendant revealed the best seat to avoid on a plane.
And 2023 is an exciting time for Americans traveling abroad, with a host of new direct routes to Europe and the Caribbean.
American Airlines will launch new direct flights from Miami to the British Virgin Islands next year.
And both Norse Airways and JetBlue will start direct flights from the US to Paris in 2023.
https://www.the-sun.com/travel/6860561/passenger-flight-seats-save-open-southwest/ Passengers divided over travelers who ‘seat save’ on flights