exit row assignment in advance?

Old Jan 23, 08, 11:36 pm
Original Poster
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: LAS
Posts: 1,323
exit row assignment in advance?

I am a BA Silver, and have recurring issues with booking exit row seats in advance of an AA flight. Typically, I book on aa.com, but ring AA to have them manually add in my BAEC number, since there is no place to enter the number in an online booking. (I don't input my AAdvantage number because I want the BAEC credit instead).

Sometimes, the AAgent immediately knows how to enter the BA number for each individual segment of my itinerary; other times the agent has to be persuaded to do this, without just adding the number only once to the res.

Then, sometimes, the AAgent reserves my exit row seat requests without any problem, and other times they don't know how to do it, or won't do it.
Today, I was told by three different telephone reps that it is impossible for one world sapphire members to reserve exit row seating in advance, that this can only be done at the airport on flight day. Two of the agents insisted that only platinum and explats can do this, and that one world sapphires have never qualified for this privilege. One agent rang their "help desk" who told her that one world sapphire is "not the same" as being a true Plat or Explat.

Is this accurate? If not, advice please on how to politely persuade a telephone agent to handle my seat request.
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Old Jan 24, 08, 10:04 am
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: ORD
Programs: AA Platinum, HHonors Diamond
Posts: 1,177
According to the oneworld website, you receive preferred seating "in accordance with the individual policy of the oneworld member airline operating the flight." According to aa.com, you do qualify for preferred seating, but this is a consistent problem across oneworld. Many OW airlines tell me that they don't pre-assign exit row seats. Others tell me that they won't do it for another FF program. Others have told me it's only for OW emerald members.


Last edited by cparekh; Jan 24, 08 at 10:10 am
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Old Jan 24, 08, 11:58 am
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Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: LAS
Posts: 1,323
Thank you!
This is what irritates me about having to ring the AA reps. rather than do it all online - -
The inconsistency of the responses from AA telephone agents.
Sometimes, the agent has no problem whatsoever in entering my BAEC number and requesting exit row seats in advance of the day of flight.

However, my last two flights on AA required several phone calls to different reps until I lucked out in getting a rep who knew what to do and didn't insist that this was only for AA plat and EXP members
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Old Jan 24, 08, 12:12 pm
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Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: SJC
Programs: AA EXP, BA Silver, AS 75K Gold MVP, and some hotel stuff...
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IME (albeit somewhat limited), AA's OW partners do a better job handling AA's elites than AA does handling elites from partners. When I fly CX, my emerald status (via AA) gets me a personal greeting and has gotten some op-ups. When I fly BA, I can use my AA PNR on the BA.com website to choose my seats automatically. I think it doesn't let me choose exit rows...but at least I can do something. When I flay AS (not even a OW partner), I can board before the rabble with the partner elites. I've never heard a similar announcement from AA.

Likely, they (AA) consider themselves the linchpin of OW (and maybe they are, based on size), but it seems that treatment of partner elites is haphazard at best.

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Old Jan 24, 08, 12:34 pm
Join Date: Feb 2007
Programs: AA EXP; Starwood Gold
Posts: 216
Even with my lowly AA Plat (OW Sapphire) status, I'm able to select exit row seats on BA's website. Maybe this is a recent development but I've done it twice in the last month without any issues.

As with all things AA, I find that it can sometimes take more than one call to find someone willing to help you but, at least in my experience, if you keep trying, you'll eventually get through to a conscientious employee who will do the right thing. It is unfortunate that you've dealt with three unhelpful operators thus far, but I suspect if you keep calling, you'll find someone who will take good care of you. Obviously, you shouldn't have to go to that much trouble, but this is an airline so I suppose none of us should be terribly surprised that it happens.
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Old Jan 24, 08, 1:13 pm
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Texas
Programs: AA LT PLAT
Posts: 78
I recently tried to book exit row seats with JAL using my AA Plat status and was told by 3 different res agents that I did not qualify.I e-mailed JAL cs and two days later recieved a reply that my initial seat request would be granted and an apology for the "misunderstanding". I do give JAL some slack as they are fairly new to OW, but I wish there was some consistency in applying the OW rules by all members.
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