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USAir seat choices and seat assignment

 
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  #1  
Old Mar 17, 2010, 4:20 PM
ElderBarker ElderBarker is offline
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 2

Two months in advance, my wife and I booked and had confirmed aisle seats adjacent to each other on opposite sides of the aisle for outbound and return non-stop flights between CLT and DEN. When I printed boarding passes for the outbound leg, my wife had been move 6 rows behind me to a window seat. For the return flight, my wife's seat assignment had completely disappeared. Only after a call to USAir customer service was she able to get promise of a middle seat one row behind me.
My complaint is that after full payment for a flight and "official" seat assignment, the airline should not change assignments without contacting the customer well in advance and explaining why the change is necessary/requested. Additionally, the customer should have the option of canceling the flight or rebooking with guaranteed seating at another date.
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  #2  
Old Mar 17, 2010, 4:38 PM
The_Judge The_Judge is offline
Former Airline Employee (NOT OFFICIAL REP)
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 1,109

You're not gonna like my answer but I am used to giving bad news. Seat assignments are not guaranteed. Especially seats you didn't pay extra for to reserve. They are basically requests. It would be nice, of course, to not be moved by the airline. Some factors sometimes mandate it. Aircraft changes are one. I have no idea the situation but the bottom line is, you paid for 2 seats and you received 2 seats. Whether they were together or not isn't part of the deal.
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Yes, the rules and policies favor the airlines unfairly. I do not dispute that.
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  #3  
Old Mar 17, 2010, 4:59 PM
ElderBarker ElderBarker is offline
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 2

I realize that there is no guarantee of seat choices, but the system that USAir and others have in place needs to be a great deal more transparent and boldly state UPFRONT that if you do not PAY for the extra consideration, you may be seated wherever the system chooses. This, by the way, is the first time we have ever been treated this way in more than 40 years of flying. In future, we will pay the man extra.
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Old Mar 17, 2010, 5:48 PM
The_Judge The_Judge is offline
Former Airline Employee (NOT OFFICIAL REP)
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 1,109

I wouldn't pay them extra. As you said eluded, this is the exception. Even if/when couples or families are split, if you go to the gate and ask the agent to see what they can do, in my experience, the majority of requests are able to be completed.

I wouldn't give more money to these crooks only to have the same thing happen again. I left the airline biz about the time they started introducing the pay extra for your seat thing and I haven't been in an airport since so I don't know if they can play with those or not. My guess is yes and they'll have some lame excuse for doing so.
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Yes, the rules and policies favor the airlines unfairly. I do not dispute that.
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  #5  
Old Mar 23, 2010, 5:42 AM
Survivor Survivor is offline
Air Canada Employee (NOT OFFICIAL REP)
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Alberta
Posts: 50

The Judge is right... there isn't an airline in the world today that is going to guarantee anything except give you back your money if you paid for seats and don't get them. The Airline is hoping things won't change, but if they have to replace a different configured aircraft for the flight you were on there is no way they will take responsibility to ensure you get the seat you thought you were getting. Seating will always be treated as a perk not a priviledge. If its important to you - continuously reconfirm your seat selection.

Last edited by Survivor; Mar 23, 2010 at 5:42 AM. Reason: mistakes
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