No status: any strategies for a better seat?

Discussion in 'US Airways | Dividend Miles' started by swag, Mar 10, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. swag
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    swag Silver Member

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    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.
     
  2. fets
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    fets Silver Member

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    Get up at midnight Arizona time on the day of departure and snag yourself an exit seat. Also, as the upgrade windows open, elites may be leaving their assigned seats in coach, opening up opportunities for you. And it never hurts to ask at checkin/gate for another seat, last minute changes happen all the time.
     
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  3. desert_gecko
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    desert_gecko Silver Member

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    It mostly depends when/where you're traveling. Some routes on US get so busy even elites don't get upgraded and every seat leaves full. Others maybe be half full, and the agents will try to sell first class.

    Try looking a week out when the upgrade windows begin and maybe you'll see an exit seat. Otherwise, when you do OLCI, you may be able to switch too.
     
  4. swag
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    swag Silver Member

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    4 of 10 seats in the exit rows are available now, but as a non-elite, I can't select them. It's a Friday afternoon flight into CLT, so I assume it'll be pretty full with a fair number of elites, as the consultants head home. Besides the 4 exit seats, I see 8 seats for sale and only one other freebie open.

    If I can select an exit seat at 2 am departure day as a non-elite, then I'll set the alarm. That's just the sort of tip I was looking for. Thanks.
     
  5. vortoozo
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    vortoozo Silver Member

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    Is waking up at 2:00am to potentially get a better seat really worth $30?
    If I saved $300 and were in this situation, I'd probably just suck it up and get the Choice seat.
    What happens if Preferred members fill up the exit seats between now and then? Then you'd be stuck with a crappy seat or a choice seat and waking up unnecessarily at 2:00am.
     
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  6. swag
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    swag Silver Member

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    It's the thrill of the hunt, and the principle.

    But yeah, I'd plan to check the seatmap earlier that day, and not get up if no exit seat is available.
     
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  7. Flag_November
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    Flag_November Silver Member

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    I'm in the same boat. I have to fly US because AA doesn't go where I'm going. But I'm "lucky" and I'm flying RJ's all he way, so there are no middle seats, just pretty tight aisle and windows. My last time I had a wide body sitting next to me - I won't call him a 'customer of size', but he was pretty wide - and it made things tough.
     
  8. swag
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    swag Silver Member

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    At about 2:01 or 2:02 am CT, the exit seats (including the exit aisle I had been eyeing) became selectable. Thanks again!
     
  9. Travel2Food
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    Travel2Food Silver Member

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    Corollary question here. I never fly US (AA-EXP, DL-PLT) so don't know the game.

    SO is traveling in a couple of weeks DCA-DAY-DCA. No seat assigned as there is one pay seat per flight, and all exit row (elite only) seats open.

    How heavily does US overbook the flights? With no seat assignment, How much risk is there of being bumped (I know, lots of folks want the bump - she doesn't)? This is an RJ, so I'd assume the bump offers/rules will be different than mainline.

    No desire to pay for the seats as there isn't much cost savings relative to FL, but the tickets have been bought.....
     
  10. trooper
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    trooper Silver Member

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    Flag_November! I like your username... although I recall it meaning "negative" (??)
    Other
    favourites are Flag_Tango and Flag_Whiskey

    (Respectively: " Keep clear of me I am engaged in pair trawling"... and "I require medical assistance"!
     
  11. sobore
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    sobore Gold Member

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    LOL I guess an RJ is one way to avoid the middle seat! :D
     
  12. JetsettingEric
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    JetsettingEric Silver Member

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    How many First Class seats are available? When are you flying? For $200, you can do the Trial Preferred program - where you can buy instant silver preferred (lowest level elite) status. You'll get access to the exit row, plus a shot at First Class Seats (unlimited complementary upgrades - no stickers). You won't pay for bags, you get to use First Class Check-in, get 25% bonus miles and Board in Zone 2 or 1. (Silver gets you Zone 2, but Exit Row / Certain bulkheads may get you Zone 1. The Value Prop of Silver Preferred only really starts to make sense if your upgrade chances look good, or if you plan to fly 7500 miles or more with US in the next 90 days - where you get to keep status for a year. In addition, US preferreds that have 35,000 or more EQMs this year get to gift the trial preferred to anyone - so if you know someone that flies US a lot you can save $200 of cash.
     
  13. Flag_November
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    Flag_November Silver Member

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    Most of the planes I fly on with US have no first class. I signed up for the Mastercard deal that gets me to Zone 2. So far I have not failed to get my roller on board with that arrangement (except for the teeny Air Wisconsin planelets). I will reach 25k in a little while.
     
  14. Flag_November
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    Flag_November Silver Member

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    Flag November means "Your movements are not understood". I had it used on me once and I never forgot it. Underway in formation at night, under EMCON, guiding on the wrong ship.
     

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