MSE News: Airlines to be investigated over...

Almost a fifth of airline passengers were separated from the rest of their group as they didn't pay extra to sit together, the Civil Aviation Authority has found as it launched an investigation into allocated seating policies...
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'Airlines to be investigated over charging for allocated seats'
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  • boatmanboatman Forumite
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    Ryanair tops the list, anyone surprised?
  • edited 5 February 2018 at 1:32PM
    vacheronvacheron Forumite
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    edited 5 February 2018 at 1:32PM
    We've experienced this first hand with Jet2 when their website separated our family of three (2 parents and a 4 year old child) by placing our the two adults together but placed our 4 year old son alone on the other side of the isle next to two strangers despite the third seat next to us on our side being shown as free.

    When we begrudgingly selected to pay to choose his seat in order to move him back with us, about 75% of the plane was showing as being unreserved which included loads of 3 seat blocks together, however, when we tried to place him in the spare seat next to us we were informed by the system that seat had miraculously become "no longer available".

    I thought this was a glitch, so logged out, waited an hour or so then went back through the booking process on a different PC, but the booking site again placed us back in the same identical seats but the seat next to us had gone back to being "available", but when I tried to move him back a second time the seat suddenly became "unavailable" again. :mad:

    This meant the only option to guarantee three seats together was to move all three of us to different seats, thereby incurring three sets of seat selection charges.

    Now this may just be me being cynical..... but....
    • The rich buy assets.
    • The poor only have expenses.
    • The middle class buy liabilities they think are assets.
    Robert T. Kiyosaki
  • Voyager2002Voyager2002 Forumite
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    vacheron wrote: »
    We've experienced this first hand with Jet2 when their website separated our family of three (2 parents and a 4 year old child) by placing our the two adults together but placed our 4 year old son alone on the other side of the isle next to two strangers despite the third seat next to us on our side being shown as free.

    Surely one of the adults could have simply swapped seats with the child once on the 'plane.
  • PollycatPollycat Forumite
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    Surely one of the adults could have simply swapped seats with the child once on the 'plane.
    But that wouldn't have sounded so shocking as the headline 'Jet2 forced my 4 year old to sit on his own'.
    Would it?
  • WestinWestin Forumite
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    Pollycat wrote: »
    But that wouldn't have sounded so shocking as the headline 'Jet2 forced my 4 year old to sit on his own'.
    Would it?

    Is the Daily Mail recruiting? #3 might be in luck.

    And of course those are also still classed as seats together by many airlines if there is ‘only’ separation by an aisle.
  • edited 5 February 2018 at 3:09PM
    shaun_from_Africashaun_from_Africa Forumite
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    edited 5 February 2018 at 3:09PM
    Westin wrote: »
    And of course those are also still classed as seats together by many airlines if there is !!!8216;only!!!8217; separation by an aisle.

    Not to mention the UK Civil aviation authority.
    They state that children should ideally be seated in the same row as the parent/guardian and no more than 1 row apart so even if the children are a couple of seats away, provided that it's still the same row, the airline are complying with their recommendations.
  • edited 5 February 2018 at 3:19PM
    vacheronvacheron Forumite
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    edited 5 February 2018 at 3:19PM
    Well based on some of the intervening comments I suppose I should apologise for sharing a first hand factual account of a group of travelers being separated by an airline because they didn't pay to sit together on a thread dedicated to discussing a story about travelers being separated by an airline because they didn't pay to sit together. :(

    Don't get me wrong, we'd have been glad to get some peace and quiet while he talked some poor stranger to death for 3 hours. But why else would an airline choose to subject one of their other innocent travelers to someone else's 4 year old son when there was a perfectly good free seat right next to the parents.... and hundreds of other free seats all over the aircraft at the time?

    The system already knows everyone's ages and the location of all the children on board so could have easily placed put the child next to both (or even one) of the parents, but it didn't.... Isn't that what this thread was supposed to be about?
    • The rich buy assets.
    • The poor only have expenses.
    • The middle class buy liabilities they think are assets.
    Robert T. Kiyosaki
  • PollycatPollycat Forumite
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    vacheron wrote: »
    Well based on some of the intervening comments I suppose I should apologise for sharing a first hand factual account of a group of travelers being separated by an airline because they didn't pay to sit together on a thread dedicated to discussing a story about travelers being separated by an airline because they didn't pay to sit together. :(

    Don't get me wrong, we'd have been glad to get some peace and quiet while he talked some poor stranger to death for 3 hours. But why else would an airline choose to subject one of their other innocent travelers to someone else's 4 year old son when there was a perfectly good free seat right next to the parents.... and hundreds of other free seats all over the aircraft at the time?

    The system already knows everyone's ages and the location of all the children on board so could have easily placed put the child next to both (or even one) of the parents, but it didn't.... Isn't that what this thread was supposed to be about?
    Well, I thought it was about travellers being split up.

    And - as already pointed out by these 2 posters:
    Westin wrote: »
    And of course those are also still classed as seats together by many airlines if there is ‘only’ separation by an aisle.
    Not to mention the UK Civil aviation authority.
    They state that children should ideally be seated in the same row as the parent/guardian and no more than 1 row apart so even if the children are a couple of seats away, provided that it's still the same row, the airline are complying with their recommendations.
    ...:whistle:
  • vacheronvacheron Forumite
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    Hi Pollycat.

    Without resorting to the sarcasm you felt was necessary in your first response, I'd be interested to hear any logical reasons anyone may have as to why, on a plane that was 75% empty, Jet2 would:
    • Seat a 4 year old child next to strangers on one side of the aisle while seating both parents on the opposite side next to an EMPTY seat?

    • Not allow the child to be moved into the empty seat even when the parents twice attempted to pay the charge to do so.

    • Were able to allow the party of three to sit in together in three adjoining seats, but only if all 3 people paid the reserve seating charge?

    I am sure the specific wording if the industry guidelines regarding what constitutes "together" is perfectly legal and I understood that perfectly the first time Shaun posted it so I don't need that pointed out again. I'm also sure spirit of these rules are to ensure safety when planes are heavily booked or to allow passenger relocations in exceptional circumstances.

    Using the same defense, it would also probably be perfectly legal to sit a 4 year old at a different table to their parents at a wedding reception when there is a free seat next to the parents, but nobody would defend those arrangements because they simply make no logical sense!

    I therefore couldn't at the time (and still can't) think of any logical reason for them doing this other than a carefully orchestrated attempt to extract three additional payments out of the party in order to restore a "completely common sense" seating arrangement.
    • The rich buy assets.
    • The poor only have expenses.
    • The middle class buy liabilities they think are assets.
    Robert T. Kiyosaki
  • robrymondrobrymond Forumite
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    It is costing us £74 to select a seat on TUI to Mexico which is just insane. But we did pay it because of the flight length!
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