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United Airlines seating issue: flying with a baby

United Airlines seating issue: flying with a baby

Old Jul 4, 11, 3:29 am
  #16  
 
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Agreed and please write this incident up, especially since you paid and you're a 1K.
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Old Jul 4, 11, 6:01 pm
  #17  
 
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Originally Posted by PTravel View Post
That may have been what the GA told you, but it's not UA policy. I think you were lied to by a GA who was betting your flight would be later than it was. If that should ever happen again, as for a customer service supervisor, or the station manager -- what they did was wrong.
Basically I had enough time to see they had changed our boarding passes and tell them it was wrong. Then the plane was leaving and they said I could wait for a station manager and try to get on the later flight or just get on ours (which had a connection following it) and take it up with the purser. So we just got on our's. I explained it to the purser who said, "There is nothing I can do." I then saw our seats were empty so we just sat and waited. Another passenger came by and asked which seats were our's and I responded "These." and they just continued on. I'm guessing they were the people "upgraded" to our seats. At least they didn't make a big deal about it.

Once home I contacted UA to ask what had happened. (We also never received the requested bassinet on either sfo-fra or fra-sfo and on sfo-fra 2 infants had been assigned to our row but only enough O2 masks for 1 so after we were seated we were moved that time too.) The UA agent apologized and gave us both $500 e-certs. (At the time I didn't even know what an ecert was or that UA even cared if you called about poor service.) So those covered a trip to Hawaii for us, so we felt more than compensated.
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Old Jul 5, 11, 1:18 am
  #18  
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Originally Posted by slomrtwo View Post
Basically I had enough time to see they had changed our boarding passes and tell them it was wrong. Then the plane was leaving and they said I could wait for a station manager and try to get on the later flight or just get on ours (which had a connection following it) and take it up with the purser. So we just got on our's. I explained it to the purser who said, "There is nothing I can do." I then saw our seats were empty so we just sat and waited. Another passenger came by and asked which seats were our's and I responded "These." and they just continued on. I'm guessing they were the people "upgraded" to our seats. At least they didn't make a big deal about it.

Once home I contacted UA to ask what had happened. (We also never received the requested bassinet on either sfo-fra or fra-sfo and on sfo-fra 2 infants had been assigned to our row but only enough O2 masks for 1 so after we were seated we were moved that time too.) The UA agent apologized and gave us both $500 e-certs. (At the time I didn't even know what an ecert was or that UA even cared if you called about poor service.) So those covered a trip to Hawaii for us, so we felt more than compensated.
I'm glad you got compensated, and I'm glad you complained. Most of UA's GAs are conscientious people who do a great job, but there are a few who like to look for the easy way out and then make up "policies" to support themselves.
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Old Jul 5, 11, 3:58 pm
  #19  
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Originally Posted by slomrtwo View Post
And make sure the check-in at each gate early. When we had a VIE-FRA flight delay that shrank our FRA layover and we weren't at the gate 45 minutes ahead. United then gave away our Economy Plus bulkhead bassinet seats and assigned us to the back row of Economy for FRA-SFO.
I paid extra to get 2 bulkhead seats in Economy Plus Class. I hope that we will arrive at the gate 45 minutes ahead because our 2 flights connect time at Washington (IAD) Airport is 1 hour 16 minutes.


Thank you for your advice.


I called United Reservation Centre regarding our request for bassinet. I explained that our baby will be 9 month, but looks like 6-month baby as he is a premature baby. They answered that they can not confirm right now and bassinet request is based on 'first come and first served'. We have to double check at the airport on the day of departure. Therefore, by the time we arrive at the gate, we are not sure that we will have a bassinet. Anyway, I think our 2 bulkhead seats will be more comfortable even without bassinet.
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Old Jul 5, 11, 8:51 pm
  #20  
 
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Originally Posted by sysunyu View Post
I paid extra to get 2 bulkhead seats in Economy Plus Class. I hope that we will arrive at the gate 45 minutes ahead because our 2 flights connect time at Washington (IAD) Airport is 1 hour 16 minutes.


Thank you for your advice.


I called United Reservation Centre regarding our request for bassinet. I explained that our baby will be 9 month, but looks like 6-month baby as he is a premature baby. They answered that they can not confirm right now and bassinet request is based on 'first come and first served'. We have to double check at the airport on the day of departure. Therefore, by the time we arrive at the gate, we are not sure that we will have a bassinet. Anyway, I think our 2 bulkhead seats will be more comfortable even without bassinet.
On the 747 at least the bassinet position is 19F&G. The rest of the row does not have the mounts on the bulkhead. We were offered a floor bassinet that never came after 2 requests when our seats were moved. So making sure your seats actually have the mounts would be the most important. As for the floor one I guess just keep on the flight crew to bring it.
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Old Jul 6, 11, 3:27 pm
  #21  
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Originally Posted by slomrtwo View Post
On the 747 at least the bassinet position is 19F&G. The rest of the row does not have the mounts on the bulkhead. We were offered a floor bassinet that never came after 2 requests when our seats were moved. So making sure your seats actually have the mounts would be the most important. As for the floor one I guess just keep on the flight crew to bring it.
Thank you for the information.
The plane (between Washington and Beijing) will be Boeing 777 and we already chose 2 bulkhead seats (in Row 17).
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Old Jul 6, 11, 9:11 pm
  #22  
 
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Originally Posted by sysunyu View Post
Thank you for the information.
The plane (between Washington and Beijing) will be Boeing 777 and we already chose 2 bulkhead seats (in Row 17).
Any UA 777 experts around here that know the bassinet position seats on row 17? Being that the bulkhead is at 17 it would be an old config 777.
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Old Jul 23, 11, 6:04 pm
  #23  
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Originally Posted by erik123 View Post
UA is not the best for families with infants. I would pay the $149 to get economy+ - it will be well worth the investment with a lap infant. In the grand scheme of things it is not that much for a much more comfortable flight.
Yes. We paid $149 x2 to get 2 economy + seats. It well worth the investment. We are in the 1st row of Economy +. We have a lot of extra legrooms as we had 2 bulkhead seats. Plus, the aircraft is a recently renewed Boeing 777 with AVOD (Audio Video On Demand) for all the seats on Economy + and Economy Class.

My wife and I are very satisfied with this 14-hour flight. Our 9-month baby also enjoyed the flight except that he did not sleep a lot. (He is very curious baby and he wants to check everybody and everything on the plane).
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Old Jul 25, 12, 1:20 am
  #24  
 
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Originally Posted by PTravel View Post
Front seats on UA are called Economy Plus. They have extra leg room and require either that you pay extra to sit there, or you get free access because you have status on the airline. Virtually all UA flights run full -- it is very, very unlikely that you would be given seats in the Economy Plus section.
This is wrong, at least for planes with bassinet seat positions. Seats with an infant bassinet are reserved for travelers with infants and often blocked by the airline for that reason.

On United, if you're travelling with an infant and request an infant bassinet seat, you (and up to one travel companion!) will be given economy plus seating at no charge. I just did this for my wife flying SYD-SFO with our 5 month old. See the "Bassinet" section for more details:
http://www.united.com/web/en-US/cont...s/default.aspx

I've been told by two agents that UA only has bassinet seats on international flights. This page has more details about which planes have bassinet seats:
http://www.united.com/web/en-US/cont...t/default.aspx

Last edited by flyerbjorn; Jul 25, 12 at 1:34 am
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Old Jul 25, 12, 9:13 am
  #25  
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Originally Posted by flyerbjorn View Post
This is wrong, at least for planes with bassinet seat positions. Seats with an infant bassinet are reserved for travelers with infants and often blocked by the airline for that reason.

On United, if you're travelling with an infant and request an infant bassinet seat, you (and up to one travel companion!) will be given economy plus seating at no charge. I just did this for my wife flying SYD-SFO with our 5 month old. See the "Bassinet" section for more details:
http://www.united.com/web/en-US/cont...s/default.aspx

I've been told by two agents that UA only has bassinet seats on international flights. This page has more details about which planes have bassinet seats:
http://www.united.com/web/en-US/cont...t/default.aspx
My post was made when United was United and it was right when I posted it. Now it's Continental-Flying-As-United. Everything changed after the merger.
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Old Jul 25, 12, 11:50 am
  #26  
 
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Originally Posted by PTravel View Post
My post was made when United was United and it was right when I posted it. Now it's Continental-Flying-As-United. Everything changed after the merger.
Yes, that's why pulling up old, outdated threads is not useful.

I will add, I have not noted UA blocking any bulkhead seats to accomodate nonpaying E+ passengers and their infants, and I don't think they should. Of course, I am not on every international UA flight either.
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Old Jul 25, 12, 6:28 pm
  #27  
 
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Originally Posted by 6rugrats View Post
Yes, that's why pulling up old, outdated threads is not useful.

I will add, I have not noted UA blocking any bulkhead seats to accomodate nonpaying E+ passengers and their infants, and I don't think they should. Of course, I am not on every international UA flight either.
I agree that continuing an old discussion is not that useful. But this thread happens to be the one of the top Google results when searching for how to fly with an infant on United.

I replied to this thread in the interest of helping others.
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Old Jul 25, 12, 6:58 pm
  #28  
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Originally Posted by flyerbjorn View Post
I agree that continuing an old discussion is not that useful. But this thread happens to be the one of the top Google results when searching for how to fly with an infant on United.

I replied to this thread in the interest of helping others.
May I humbly request that, in the future, you preface such a response with, "This has changed," or, "This is outdated," rather than, "This is wrong."?
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Old Jul 25, 12, 10:14 pm
  #29  
 
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Originally Posted by PTravel View Post
May I humbly request that, in the future, you preface such a response with, "This has changed," or, "This is outdated," rather than, "This is wrong."?
Absolutely, sorry about that.

Thanks for pointing that out.
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Old Dec 18, 13, 5:14 pm
  #30  
 
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My experience 12/2013

Just wanted to add my experience here since I searched high and low and couldn't find many of the answers I was looking for. My family and I are flying LAX>SYD(747) on award tickets next month. We will have our 8 month old baby with us and wanted a bassinet.

I called United Reservations to request a bassinet and got transferred to another call center (sounded like India?) "because I was on an award itinerary". The representative took a long time, got the name and age of the baby (which they already had since I added and paid for the infant ticket some time ago). After a good deal of time, he told me my bassinet request was confirmed.

When I logged back on, I saw that our seats had not been changed and I was unable to change them to a bassinet location online without paying ~$160 per seat since the only bassinet locations are in E+. Furthermore, the bassinet locations were not blocked out and were available for sale / booking. I called back late in the evening to see if I could get the seats confirmed. This time I reached the call center in Manila (I didn't even know they had one there) and the representative easily moved our seats to the bulkhead location without trouble and without paying a fee.

TL;DR: United can and will move your seats to an E+ bulkhead location accommodate a bassinet request but not all agents seem to understand this. Call early, since they are not blocked out and available for sale as E+ seats.

My $0.02, YMMV

Last edited by Dave.d; Dec 18, 13 at 5:23 pm
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