I'm Gold on AA, and nobody on US, but for a trip later this month, US was about $300 cheaper. Having bought the tickets, I find a have an aisle for the return, but on the outbound, I'm in a middle seat towards the back, and all that's currently available are other middles even farther back, or pay seats. Is there any chance I can get an aisle without paying? Is it worth it to keep checking the seat map hoping one opens up? Ask at the ticket counter, kiosk, or gate? Any other suggestions? As an aside, how does US price the choice seats? What little I can find suggests it varies based on flight duration, but for my round trip, it's $30 for the outbound and just $23 for the return.