How to Choose Seats on Iberia Airlines

Many people come across Iberia Airlines’ notoriously bad IT when they attempt to make use of their Oneworld elite status benefits. Even though Oneworld elites are entitled to free seat selection on Iberia flights – including Iberia Express, Iberia Regional and Air Nostrum – the airline often attempts to charge for seat selection.

Until recently, I have never had a problem personally with using my Oneworld status to pre-select a seat. Occasionally it might not work the first time, but eventually Iberia’s systems would recognize my elite status and allow me to choose a seat. I have regularly wondered why it wouldn’t work for everybody, and why some people have resorted to all kinds of wacky schemes in order to select a seat.

For my latest trip on Iberia, I have had the same difficulties as others – but I believe that I have found an easy solution. It requires downloading the Iberia App to your phone…

Step 1 – Find Your Booking Using the Iberia App

Step 2 – Select Seats Using the App

When you manage your Iberia booking using their App, you should be able to easily find where to choose seats…

Even though Iberia’s App wants to charge you for seat selection, you can choose seats nonetheless.

Once you confirm your seat selection – without entering any payment details – you can return to the initial Manage Your Booking page, where you should see that your seat selection is confirmed.

Step 3 – Double-check on your Computer

If you Manage My Booking on a computer, you should find that your seat selection appears to have “stuck”. Even though you never actually paid for the seats…

Bottom Line

I can’t say for sure whether I will be sitting in seats 11C and 12C when I actually take my flights. But several days after using this little trick to pre-select my seats, things are looking good…


  1. Michelle says

    So did that work? We booked our first flight on Iberia tonight and almost throw a few electronic devices with how buggy the website is. Attempted this suggestion since my boyfriend has platinum pro on American and now we see seats. Crossing fingers!

  2. AinakJin says

    Awesome. I did not enter any payments and the seats still appear to be there. I am Plat with AA. Hope this works

  3. Mikko says

    I’m having the same issue. On the app, I cant choose the seat at all. On the website, I could choose it but only if I pay. I’m Finnair Platinum (Emerald). I’ll keep trying 🙂

  4. Andrew Wingert says

    Craig, very excited to see your article, given the extreme frustration I am experiencing with Iberia, not only in obtaining seat assignments for flights from France back to DFW in Oct ’23, but the overall service (or lack thereof) offered by their call center agents – multiple calls, each has a different reason for my inability to obtain, but with no viable solution other than wait until check-in.

    So, in following your steps, I am immediately ‘halted’ because my interface with Iberia app does not match yours. I have no icons for ‘Seats’, ‘Insurance’ or ‘Special Equipment’, thus I am unable to execute your directions further.
    I have deleted and reloaded app several times…does not appear to be any other options of Iberia apps within Apple Store.

    Would very much appreciate any ideas, suggestions or other alternatives.

    • Craig Sowerby says

      First of all, Iberia doesn’t allow you to pre-select seats so far in advance. It won’t be available until Iberia decides which airplane types are actually assigned to each route. That should happen in early 2023.

      Secondly, the App work-around has stopped working for elite members. However, I suspect that you booked October 2023 using miles – and award tickets usually come with seat selection. So it’s just a question of patience…

      • GT Laudouar says

        Hello, I’m in the same boat as ANDREW WINGERT — I can’t get a seat assg thru any means, the app, the website or thru American AIrlines. Flight is in a month MAD-DFW (Oct 2023). An 11.5 hr flight will be rough is I’m stuck in the middle seat… Thanks for any help you can give me.

  5. GT Laudouar says

    PS I’m using aa miles, and every time I’ve called Iberia, their agents give me a different reason they can’t assign a seat, and said I must wait to check in AT THE AIRPORT, not even online. One blamed it on the booking code, another on the airport itself, another on the fact is was too early. And the flight looks like it will be full.

    • Craig Sowerby says

      Do you have elite status? Or do you just want to pay for a seat? Or are you just hoping that an AA award ticket includes seat selection on Iberia?

      Did you call AA to get the PNR valid for Iberia? It should be 6 numbers / digits and will be different to AA’s record locator.

  6. Peter Frank says

    I’m booked on a MAD-JFK flight in April that I booked through American. Paid for business class seats. When I tried to get my seat assignment with IB on their website, it wanted to charge me anywhere from $43 to $52. So obnoxious considering what I’ve already shelled out for the fare and I’m AA Platinum Pro! I tried your trick: Chose the seat on the app, didn’t enter payment details, then backed out. When I check my flight on the IB site it shows a “balance due” but of $36.82 – a bit less than the originally quoted fee. Strange! I’m not paying – we’ll see what happens when I check in at the airport. Wish me luck!

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