From knee room to in-flight amenities, who knew there was so much to consider when booking your next airline seat.
Thanks to SeatGuru.com, knowing how and when to pick the best ‘chill chair’ on your flight is simple and stress free.
Research the options before you book
There are several tools available to help the airline traveller make informed booking decisions. In addition to providing a list of flight options, most booking engines also provide the aircraft each airline will be flying and what seats are still available for each flight.
Taking a few extra minutes to examine all this information can have a significant impact on your travel.
Look beyond price. While the cost of a plane ticket is certainly important, considering only this factor when booking may cause you to miss out on a better travel experience.
While buying a cheaper ticket will save you money, it might cost you a more enjoyable journey with a better entertainment system, a power port, or even a better seat.
Compare seat pitch and width dimensions. Seat pitch and width can vary greatly between airline carriers and aircraft type. While one or two extra inches of pitch may not seem significant, it can make a huge difference in terms of comfort and productivity.
It usually means your knees won’t be touching the seat back in front of you and you’ll be able to fully open your laptop screen.
Compare in-flight amenities. Having a personal video screen or power port to plug in your laptop or DVD player can make any trip more enjoyable. It can help you relax, entertain the kids, and help business travelers stay productive. Airline carriers offer very different types of amenities, especially for international travel.
Compare seat availability. Most major booking engines allow you to view Seat Availability for flights before you even select them for your itinerary. If the only seats that are available are Red seats, it may be worth booking a different flight.
Select a seat at time of booking
To get a preferred seat on a plane, it is extremely important to select your seat as early as possible. Most booking engines and airlines allow you to select your seat at time of purchase. Even if your first choice seat is not available, select another option to ensure you have a seat assignment; it can usually be changed later.
If seat selection is not available when booking online, call the airline directly
Time is the most important factor here, so call the airline immediately after you have completed your online booking to make your seat selection with a phone agent. Again, if your first choice seat is not available, select another seat and attempt to change it at a later date.
Confirm your seat assignment the week you are flying
Airlines sometimes switch the aircraft type close to the departure date due to load factors and maintenance. When these changes are made, pre-reserved seats are re-assigned and you could lose the seat you so carefully selected. In addition, airlines will often release seats that were previously not available for assignment.
If you continue to check back on your flight and aircraft type you’ll increase your chances of keeping the seat you want, and perhaps even grab a better seat when one becomes available.
Many airlines only allow exit rows and bulkhead seats to be booked on the day of flight. As online check-in is now widely available, you can secure a better seat without having to arrive at the airport hours and hours before your flight. You can even check-in online if you have bags to check!