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Reports From the Forum

The “Economy Throne” That’s Better Than an Upgrade

The “Economy Throne” That’s Better Than an Upgrade
Joe Cortez

The FlyerTalk Forum is a pretty big place, so when a particularly good piece of FlyerTalk comes across our desks, we put it on the front page for regular Reports From the Forum. Want to read more? Check out the Reports From the Forum tag, or head to the forum yourself to see what the FlyerTalk is about.

Is there an economy seat so good that you’d resist an upgrade? We first got wind of the “Economy Throne” in the British Airways | Executive Club in a post titled Any Way to Prevent an Unwanted Upgrade? which is the best recommendation for an economy seat we’ve heard in a long time.

Usually, getting an upgrade is a good thing, especially now that they’re harder and harder to come by. But in the FlyerTalk forum, one flyer wants to keep the economy seat they went out of their way to book:

“When I fly Economy on an A380 I always book myself into seat 25D, a.k.a the ‘Economy Throne,’” writes FlyerTalker Buzzz. “It’s on the main deck and has an emergency access hatch on the floor that provides the most legroom on any BA airline seat.”

But, as a British Airways Executive Club Gold flyer, they were upgraded to World Traveller Plus, British Airways’ premium economy product.

“The truth is that, at my excessive height, I would greatly prefer ANY exit row seat in World Traveller or 25D on an A380 to any seat in World Traveller Plus. With my Gold status, though, I am prioritized for an unwanted upgrade. Is there any way to prevent this from happening?”

Is There Anything You Can Do About an Unwanted Upgrade? 

Yes, a gate agent in the forum advised. You can get a downgrade by telling the ground staff at check-in or at the gate as soon as you find out. “They will be able to officially put you back into that seat and upgrade somebody else. I’ve had this a few times at the gate while boarding passengers. Not a problem and our flight management team can sort this with a quick phone call.”

Another Economy Throne?

One way to find those economy seats worth refusing an upgrade for is to keep an eye out for FlyerTalkers asking for downgrades. In March 2019, another FlyerTalker had a similar problem. This time, the seat they wanted to keep was 23D on an A321, “the one with a lot of extra legroom.” He was also able to get a downgrade via the lounge attendant who was “a bit perplexed” but accommodating.

And he wasn’t the only one looking to downgrade: “As I got to the gate some poor chap was arguing with the gate staff to be downgraded as well, possibly having taken my seat in Club.”


What are your favorite economy seats? Let us know in the comments section or in the FlyerTalk forums!

View Comments (5)


  1. trickshot

    January 8, 2020 at 10:45 am

    To be honest on any BA short haul flight I systematically refuse any upgrades to Club Europe. As a Gold flyer and at 6ft 6in, the emergency exit is my friend and on a short haul flight who cares about the minuscule “meal” I’ll be missing out on in Club Europe with the atrocious legroom.

  2. dhturk

    January 8, 2020 at 12:33 pm

    I’ve got an economy throne seat picked out on international flights , such that I decline the upgrade (Delta allows you to select which individual flights you want to upgrade). I just can’t bring myself to give the particulars here.

  3. BigLar

    January 8, 2020 at 3:58 pm

    Back when I was a Plat on NW, we were guaranteed First Class (domestic) and, if they couldn’t do it, they gifted you 1000 miles. I used to fly regularly BUF-MSP, and I’d book BUF-DTW-IND-MSP, and refuse the upgrade on all the legs. Each leg was an hour or less, so no big deal. Doing that every week (unless I was UG’d before the flight) resulted in no less than FIVE WBC flight to Europe.

    Ah, good times. :)

  4. IanFromHKG

    January 11, 2020 at 7:36 pm

    Seat 22C on AY’s A350 is the same – a missing seat in front!

  5. Jinxed_K

    January 15, 2020 at 9:08 am

    This is like 23A/F on American’s A321s.
    The window seats in row 22 are missing due to the emergency exits.

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