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Holding seats

Sonokeena
New Arrival

I was on flight 5696 heading to LaGuardia from Nashville international airport. The flight was full and as I headed toward the back I found a window seat with space in the over head compartment. As I tried to sit down the person in the middle seat said they were holding the seat. I told them if the person was not on the plane yet I was sitting as the open seating policy allows. The women then called the fight attendant who justified her actions saying it was allowed to hold seats. I was then instructed to take a middle seat. Thankfully a gentleman offered a window seat further back. I should not have had to move further back for someone who had not boarded yet. The passenger and the flight attendant ganged up on me when I had the right to have that seat. What is the point in assigning boarding positions if everyone can just hold seats for each other. I felt bullied by the flight attendant Susan. I am very dissatisfied and disappointed with the service I received.

5 REPLIES 5

Re: Holding seats

CareforNOLA
Active Member

@Sonokeena,

Southwest’s open seating policy is often a posted topic on the discussion boards, and various opinions and suggestions get tossed around.  If you search saving seats, you will see the variety of opinions.  I understand how some dislike it, and for many, they ultimately choose to fly alternative carriers.  

 

I prefer the policy, because I have a lot of allergies, so if I sit and end up near a dog or a highly perfumed person, I will get up and move further back.  That option is preferable over an allergy attack in an enclosed space.  And I keep in mind that we all arrive at the same time and it helps keep the prices lower. Having sat in the back often, I have timed how long the plane takes to empty out and it is usually less than 10-15 minutes. Others argue that they should get to choose any seat, and will even sit down against the other passenger’s will, but if someone is saving one, I just keep moving back.  

 

I don’t want that kind of conflict in my life to save for 10 minutes of time.  

 

I am sorry that you felt ganged up on, and hopefully it will not happen to you again.  I also think that the gentleman who found you the window seat was likely a much better person to share a row with than the person who asked you not to sit in that seat.

 

My mindset is that free-range seating is preferred.  Although I might end up in the middle or squished against a window occasionally, I know that can happen even with assigned seating.  I wish I could say that makes me “a MOVER and a shaker” but it probably just means I like lower prices.  I hope the experience doesn’t totally turn you off of Southwest, and that you ended up next to someone kind and respectful, even if in the back.

Highlighted

Re: Holding seats

Sonokeena
New Arrival

This was my first time visiting the discussion forum and my first post. I read some of the other posts afterward. Thank you for the reply. 

Re: Holding seats

SWDigits
Active Member
Solution

@Sonokeena wrote:

This was my first time visiting the discussion forum and my first post. I read some of the other posts afterward. Thank you for the reply. 


One additional thought is that most of the participants here are customers just like you so you may also want to send your thoughts directly to Southwest using one of the options listed on the "Submitting a Suggestion and/or Complaint" page.


Southwest customer | Home airport DCA

Re: Holding seats

SWDigits
Active Member

@Sonokeena wrote:

The women then called the fight attendant who justified her actions saying it was allowed to hold seats.


This comment caught my eye becasue the Southwest policy is that there is not a policy so I'm surprised the flight attendant got involved.  Many of the other seat saving threads voice disbelief that the flight attendant did not get involved when they asked for flight attendant intervention.

 

It's also strange that the person saving the seat sat in the middle and saved the window seat rather than sitting in the window and saving the middle seat.  Strange because I think most people, like you, would go for an open window seat before going for an open middle seat.


Southwest customer | Home airport DCA

Re: Holding seats

DancingDavidE
Top Contributer

@SWDigits wrote:

@Sonokeena wrote:

The women then called the fight attendant who justified her actions saying it was allowed to hold seats.


It's also strange that the person saving the seat sat in the middle and saved the window seat rather than sitting in the window and saving the middle seat.  Strange because I think most people, like you, would go for an open window seat before going for an open middle seat.


@Sonokeena"obey flight crew instructions" supersedes all other policy in this regard. But be aware that a different crew might not give the same interpretation.

 

@SWDigitsexactly! This person wasn't playing the game correctly by sitting in the middle unless they were actually trying to save both seats, which we're digging the hole deeper if so.

 

I suspect that many more experienced Southwest travelers would also see this person sitting in the middle and go "harumph" and just keep moving back as a telltale sign of seat saving that they would be back in the open range area and sitting in a middle seat. Something is up, any normal person (excepting @TheMiddleSeat)would be in the window or aisle in that situation.

 

 

 

Home airport MDW, frequent visitor to MCO to see the mouse.