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Saving seats is becoming an epidemic! EarlyBird check in.

Saving seats is becoming an epidemic! EarlyBird check in.

Old Feb 14, 10, 9:52 pm
  #1  
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Saving seats is becoming an epidemic! EarlyBird check in.

There is quite the trend going on and I do believe it has A LOT to do with early bird check in.

Now, I love the idea of EB, and I have used it myself, however, it is now being used by one person in a party and then saving all the exit row seats by placing bags in them so that the rest of the party does not have to pay the @10 EB fee.. These people are VERY aggressive and I have just never witnessed this behavior in the past. EVER. It seems to be happening on every flight, where it never did in the past.

This is soon going to lead to some conflict. I have been witness to some very tense situations recently. I do think it might be time to enforce a no saving seat policy before this gets out of hand.

(sorry about the horribly misspelled subject)

Last edited by DontCallMeShirley; Feb 14, 10 at 10:00 pm
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Old Feb 14, 10, 10:37 pm
  #2  
 
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I am an A-Lister but my CP is not so when I board I usually head for the "Love Seat" and hope no one will take it before my CP gets on. I have had many FAs remind me that I cannot save the exit row seat and if anyone wants to take it, the seat is theirs. I totally agree with this and if someone really wants the seat next to me bad enough, I will move to a different row so I can sit with my CP. I do kindly ask people if they don't mind, my CP is coming and I would like for them to sit here, but if anyone were to say they did mind, I would gladly go find another seat further back.

So in my experience, FAs have been very good about enforcing Exit Row seat saving, but not regular rows, which is fine with me. I also rarely see an exit row not be taken by through pax, BS pax, or A-List pax, so I am not sure how many EB pax are really getting these seats. Maybe you are just lucky enough to be on the EB heavy flights!!
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Old Feb 14, 10, 10:42 pm
  #3  
 
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Originally Posted by ronbo83 View Post
I am an A-Lister but my CP is not so when I board I usually head for the "Love Seat" and hope no one will take it before my CP gets on. I have had many FAs remind me that I cannot save the exit row seat and if anyone wants to take it, the seat is theirs. I totally agree with this and if someone really wants the seat next to me bad enough, I will move to a different row so I can sit with my CP. I do kindly ask people if they don't mind, my CP is coming and I would like for them to sit here, but if anyone were to say they did mind, I would gladly go find another seat further back.

So in my experience, FAs have been very good about enforcing Exit Row seat saving, but not regular rows, which is fine with me. I also rarely see an exit row not be taken by through pax, BS pax, or A-List pax, so I am not sure how many EB pax are really getting these seats. Maybe you are just lucky enough to be on the EB heavy flights!!
I am in the same situation -- AL with CP. My approach, reaction and experience has been the same as yours.
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Old Feb 19, 10, 12:00 am
  #4  
nsx
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I saw a new method today. A guy had stuffed animals and pastel mini-blankets spread across all of Row 8 (approximate row number). Obviously he wanted the entire family to be together, and probably this was a way to avoid paying for BS tickets or even EBCI.

He must have been in Business Select, or a through passenger picking up his family at this stop, because I boarded at A30 and he was already completely set up with his seat-blocking system. The family were not through passengers or I would have seen them heading upstream at some point.

The guy was at least nice enough to remain seated while everyone else got off first. That's something that fewer than half the traveling parents do.

For the record, I agree that Southwest should assist a family in sitting together. However mid-boarding (after A60) would have been sufficient without this scheme.
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Old Feb 19, 10, 6:30 am
  #5  
 
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Well, dumb ole me paid for the EB for my entire family of 6 so we could sit together, and while it isn't my place to spend other people's money, if I have to do it to ensure we can sit together, other's should too. JMO
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Old Feb 19, 10, 6:49 am
  #6  
 
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Originally Posted by Sofakingcane View Post
Well, dumb ole me paid for the EB for my entire family of 6 so we could sit together, and while it isn't my place to spend other people's money, if I have to do it to ensure we can sit together, other's should too. JMO
Thank you for doing the right thing-I wish more would follow your example.
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Old Feb 19, 10, 8:48 am
  #7  
 
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EB works for CP too

Originally Posted by ronbo83 View Post
I am an A-Lister but my CP is not so when I board I usually head for the "Love Seat" and hope no one will take it before my CP gets on. I have had many FAs remind me that I cannot save the exit row seat and if anyone wants to take it, the seat is theirs. I totally agree with this and if someone really wants the seat next to me bad enough, I will move to a different row so I can sit with my CP. I do kindly ask people if they don't mind, my CP is coming and I would like for them to sit here, but if anyone were to say they did mind, I would gladly go find another seat further back.

So in my experience, FAs have been very good about enforcing Exit Row seat saving, but not regular rows, which is fine with me. I also rarely see an exit row not be taken by through pax, BS pax, or A-List pax, so I am not sure how many EB pax are really getting these seats. Maybe you are just lucky enough to be on the EB heavy flights!!
Here's another perspective:

CP is an amazing benefit. I gladly pay $10 each way for EB for my CP. That makes the total price of the ticket $15 each way after paying the airport security fee. "Price is what you pay, value is what you get" (Warren Buffet)

Also, I'm 6'5" and currently forced to travel on Delta, Continental and AA commuter jets. These are the small jets that sometimes have 1 or 2 seats on the left and 2 seats on the right of the aisle. Every seat on Southwest offers 'much' more leg room and hip room than any seat on these flights. I fit comfortably in any seat on Southwest. Thanks WN for making that possible
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Old Feb 19, 10, 1:39 pm
  #8  
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Originally Posted by DontCallMeShirley View Post
Now, I love the idea of EB, and I have used it myself, however, it is now being used by one person in a party and then saving all the exit row seats by placing bags in them so that the rest of the party does not have to pay the @10 EB fee.. These people are VERY aggressive and I have just never witnessed this behavior in the past. EVER. It seems to be happening on every flight, where it never did in the past.
Every flight? Shirley you're exaggerating ...
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Old Feb 19, 10, 1:42 pm
  #9  
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Originally Posted by safu View Post
CP is an amazing benefit. I gladly pay $10 each way for EB for my CP. That makes the total price of the ticket $15 each way after paying the airport security fee. "Price is what you pay, value is what you get" (Warren Buffet)
How can I justify paying triple ($15 vs. $5) or even quintuple ($12.50 vs. $2.50) for a one-way ticket?!? That's an outrageous percentage increase in price!!!
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Old Feb 19, 10, 2:38 pm
  #10  
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As WN states no formal policy on seat saving, no rules are violated by taking a seat someone "claims" to be saved.

If the are saving the last aisle seat, I am taking it if I have a lower boarding number than the person they are saving it for. Same with the exit seat. Let them try to stop me physically, and I will initiate a lawsuit against the pax and perhaps WN.

I really don't care if I "seem like a jerk". I don't know these people and I am never seeing them again. It's like my anti-poacher policy on airlines with assinged seating..."a lack of planning on your part does not constitute an emergency on mine"

I know EB has increased this practice, and in turn devalued the EB incentive for those "denied" their first available choice of seat by a saver.

EBCI is so rife with problems that it seems to have been rolled out as more of an experiment than a revenue source.

1: It is a product with monetary value that cannot always be necessarily delivered. Line jumpers and inattentive GA's lead to the person with A47 getting on before a person at A33 EBCI. Seat savers who buy one EBCI and attempt to save a seat for someone without EBCI...an issue WN seems to not know what to do about...render the product I purchased somewhat useless. Sure, no t24 pressure, but that's it..they ALSO advertise it as a better boarding position..which means nothing if seats are saved for people further back in line.

2: So far, it doesn't seem to even work that well. WN will frequently "lose" ECBI status on a ticket, or assign non-EBCI BP's boarding positions infront of EBCI tics. Nothing like checking in at the airport and getting C30 after EBCI..and inquring with a GA only to find out the system did not see my EBCI..but it still took my MONEY!!!

3: So far as I know, and I may be wrong on this now, the gate software has not been programmed to prevent BP's too far out of range from getting on, and doesn't seem to notice deviations from the standard order of BS, A List, EBCI and Regs. No reg tick should be scannable without an override BEFORE all known ECBI's are checked in.

4: As a product, it's kind of a crapshoot. You can buy it and still get B30, or you can NOT buy it and still pick up A22..depending on the flight and time.
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Old Feb 20, 10, 9:38 am
  #11  
 
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Why is there such an urge to sit beside someone you really don't want to sit beside and who really does not want to sit next to you?

If you holding A-32 cannot stop A-47 from cutting in front of you then you cannot stop C-47 from cutting in front of you. If you show your boarding pass to someone while asking to see his and he refuses, then you can safely assume your number precedes his.
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Old Feb 20, 10, 10:31 am
  #12  
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It's really quite pathetic. Sometimes it's about saving a seat for your buddy with the B59 boarding pass.. other times it's because someone's a racist and would rather let a Caucasian female take the adjacent seat instead of an Asian male (common on MDW-Florida routes).

The last flight I took to Florida was ridiculous - a guy in the 2-seat exit row said his seatmate was in the restroom (I look up and see green lights on both ends of the plane). I figured if an older guy is gonna make up dumb lies on a plane, it's the tip of the iceberg.
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Old Feb 20, 10, 8:17 pm
  #13  
 
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Originally Posted by pinworm View Post
Let them try to stop me physically, and I will initiate a lawsuit against the pax and perhaps WN.
I really hope you try to do that to me someday. I truly do.

I really don't care if I "seem like a jerk".
Obviously.

I know EB has increased this practice, and in turn devalued the EB incentive for those "denied" their first available choice of seat by a saver.

EBCI is so rife with problems that it seems to have been rolled out as more of an experiment than a revenue source.

1: It is a product with monetary value that cannot always be necessarily delivered. Line jumpers and inattentive GA's lead to the person with A47 getting on before a person at A33 EBCI. Seat savers who buy one EBCI and attempt to save a seat for someone without EBCI...an issue WN seems to not know what to do about...render the product I purchased somewhat useless. Sure, no t24 pressure, but that's it..they ALSO advertise it as a better boarding position..which means nothing if seats are saved for people further back in line.

.
.
.
What happens when you run into real problems in your life?

This is the biggest non-issue on earth... well... at least since the Tiger Woods story broke out.

Originally Posted by ronbo83 View Post
I am an A-Lister but my CP is not so when I board I usually head for the "Love Seat" and hope no one will take it before my CP gets on. I have had many FAs remind me that I cannot save the exit row seat and if anyone wants to take it, the seat is theirs. I totally agree with this and if someone really wants the seat next to me bad enough, I will move to a different row so I can sit with my CP. I do kindly ask people if they don't mind, my CP is coming and I would like for them to sit here, but if anyone were to say they did mind, I would gladly go find another seat further back.

So in my experience, FAs have been very good about enforcing Exit Row seat saving, but not regular rows, which is fine with me. I also rarely see an exit row not be taken by through pax, BS pax, or A-List pax, so I am not sure how many EB pax are really getting these seats. Maybe you are just lucky enough to be on the EB heavy flights!!
I completely agree with your take on the situation. I'll save my wife/CP holder a seat, explain nicely that "I can't/wouldn't tell you not to sit here, but I'd like to save this for my wife if you don't mind." No one ever minds. If you do mind, I'll move, but you *are* a jerk, whether you care what others think of you or not.
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Old Feb 21, 10, 1:18 am
  #14  
 
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You Can't Violate a Policy if There is No Policy

If SW's policy on seat saving is that "there is no policy," then officially you are neither permitted nor prohibited from doing it. Take that any way you want.

When you have an empty seat next to you, you can ask the those boarding behind you to leave it empty. Say something like "Yes, it's saved," or something polite like "If you don't mind, I'm waiting for someone," or something rude like "Don't even think of sitting here." Or maybe do little tricks like not making eye contact, or leaving you laptop or jacket on the seat next to you, or wearing a surgical mask. Or you can sit in silence hoping the following passengers will read your mind. If you want. It's your choice.

If you are the one boarding later and see a seat you want, you may just take it. You don't have to ask. Any empty seat. Or you could ask politely if it's saved and if the reply is "Yes" then you find another seat. Or you still can take the seat anyway. If you want. It's your choice.

Are you type A or Type B? entitled or cooperative? courteous or pushy? Your personality type, not a vague airline policy, will determine what you do. It's your choice.
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Old Feb 21, 10, 7:48 am
  #15  
 
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Originally Posted by Allan38103 View Post
If SW's policy on seat saving is that "there is no policy," then officially you are neither permitted nor prohibited from doing it. Take that any way you want.

When you have an empty seat next to you, you can ask the those boarding behind you to leave it empty. Say something like "Yes, it's saved," or something polite like "If you don't mind, I'm waiting for someone," or something rude like "Don't even think of sitting here." Or maybe do little tricks like not making eye contact, or leaving you laptop or jacket on the seat next to you, or wearing a surgical mask. Or you can sit in silence hoping the following passengers will read your mind. If you want. It's your choice.

If you are the one boarding later and see a seat you want, you may just take it. You don't have to ask. Any empty seat. Or you could ask politely if it's saved and if the reply is "Yes" then you find another seat. Or you still can take the seat anyway. If you want. It's your choice.

Are you type A or Type B? entitled or cooperative? courteous or pushy? Your personality type, not a vague airline policy, will determine what you do. It's your choice.
Well said.
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