How to Book the Best Airline Seat
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Utilize these tips for choosing the best seat when you book your airline tickets Published On: March 26, 2009 
  1. Seats in the Exit Row: Seats located near the exit generally have more room than other seats. However, not everyone can book this class of seat. Children under age 15, individuals who are blind or disabled cannot sit in an exit row. Also, these seats can’t be reserved, as the airline personnel wants to see the passenger they assign these rows to, to verify that they are physically able to open the emergency exit, should the occasion arise.

    Seats in the Exit Row

    If you want a seat in the exit row, get to the airport early on the day of the flight, and request an exit row seat. Note that some of the exit row seats on some aircrafts do not recline.

  2. Bulkhead Seats: Bulkhead seats are the seats directly behind physical partitions on the plane, essentially the walls or curtains that separate the different sections and classes of a plane. When reclined, your legs will hit the divider/wall or curtain. If you have an infant and request an airline provided bassinet, you will be assigned to the bulkhead seats because that is where the wall brackets that hold the bassinette are located.

    Each plane is designed differently, so the space may be limited in the bulkhead area. When booking your airline tickets, check to see what type of aircraft you’ll be flying on for your trip. Various airlines offer an inside look at their fleet to help you choose the best seat based on location and space.

  3. Tips for Getting the Best Airplane Seat: Being prompt and quick is key to getting the best deal in today’s world. Booking an airline ticket is no exception.

    Book Flights in Advance:
    1. The sooner you purchase your airline ticket, the more options you will have for choosing the best seat.
    2. Keep on checking for available seats, as the majority of airlines have additional seats as the flight departure approaches. If this is not an option, make sure you get to the airport early and ask an agent to help find the best seat.

    Purchasing a Better Seat:
    1. Some airlines offer travelers to purchase better seats. Of course this comes at an additional cost. These seats offer more legroom for an extra price. It’s advisable to go for this option if you are booking a long haul flight.

    Choosing your seat while booking your Tickets:
    1. There is no point in waiting until the last minute to book your seat. If the option to choose your seat while making your flight booking, go for it.
    2. Most of the booking engines these days offer this provision and have added this feature to their website.

  4. Airline agents: Always ask an airline agent for help with regards to your seating. Confirm your seat with the agent at the time of check-in. In case you have any medical conditions, make him or her aware of this and the type seating you will need.

    Be courteous and gentle when requesting a seat change or new seats.

  5. Frequent flier program:
    1. If you are not part of a frequent flyer program, we suggest you join one. Signing up for a membership is free and it comes with loads of advantages.
    2. No annual dues or requirements to being a frequent flier
    3. While purchasing your airline tickets you can use your frequent flier number and you’re likely to get better seating options if they are available.

    Below is a sample of seat pitch and seat width for some common airlines. Please note: Seat details were correct when this article was published. CheapOair cannot be held responsible for any errors that may exist. Please also note that some figures represent new product installations that may not be available across an airline's entire fleet.

    We urge you to call the airlines to check. Airline Numbers and Websites:

    Name of Airlines

    Seat Pitch

    Seat Width

    Name of Airlines

    Seat Pitch

    Seat Width

    Aer Lingus

    32"

    17"

    Etihad Airways

    32"

    17"

    Aeroflot

    32"

    18"

    Finnair

    32"

    18"

    Air Canada

    31-33"

    17.2"

    First Choice

    33"

    17.8"

    Air China

    34"

    18"-19"

    Garuda Indonesia

    33"

    17"

    Air France

    31"

    18"

    Gulf Air

    32-33"

    18"

    Air India

    31-33"

    17.4"

    Iberia

    32"

    17"

    Air Mauritius

    33"

    20"

    Japan Airlines

    33"

    17"

    Air Pacific

    32"

    17"

    Jet Airways

    31"

    17" - 18"

    Air Sahara

    31-32"

    18" - 18.4"

    K L M

    31"

    17.0" - 17.5"

    Air Seychelles

    32"

    18.5"

    Lufthansa

    31"

    17"

    Alaska Airlines

    32"

    17"

    Malaysia Airlines

    34"

    17.0" - 17.25"

    Alitalia

    32"

    17"

    Olympic Airways

    32"

    19"

    Alliance Airlines

    34"

    18.5"

    Pacific Blue

    31-33"

    17"

    All Nippon Airways

    32"

    16.5" - 17"

    Pakistan International

    32"

    20.3"

    American Airlines

    31-32"

    17.2" - 17.8"

    Qantas Airways

    31"

    17.2" - 18.1"

    A T A

    31-32"

    17"

    Qatar Airways

    32-34"

    17.5" - 18.9"

    Austrian Airlines

    32"

    17.3"

    Ryanair

    30"

    17"

    British Airways

    31"

    17"

    SAS Scandinavian

    32"

    17.7"

    bmi baby

    29"

    17.5"

    Singapore Airlines

    32"

    18" - 19"

    Cathay Pacific

    31"

    17.45" - 17.5"

    Swiss

    31"

    17.3"

    Continental Airlines

    31"

    17.2"- 17.9"

    Thai Airways

    34"

    17.0"

    Delta Air Lines

    32"

    17.2" - 17.5"

    Tunisair

    32"

    17.3"

    Dragonair

    31"

    18.7"

    Turkish Airlines

    32"

    17" - 18"

    easyJet

    29"

    18"

    United Airlines

    31"

    18"

    Emirates

    32-33"

    17" - 18"

    Virgin Atlantic

    31"

    17.5"


    *A considerable discrepancy has been observed in the way many airlines quote seat widths. Some provide the measurement between the inside of armrests, others the distance between the middle of armrests etc.

    **The stats have been obtained from various internet sources, primarily www.seatguru.com & www.seatexperts.com

    ****Stats provided are for the Economy Class.

    In conclusion, those familiar with flying know the importance of a good seat, though a good seat is a matter of personal preference. We hope this guide helps you in narrowing your seat selection when you book your next airline ticket.
 
 
 



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