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Beware of Seat Selection Charge for Business on BA

Beware of Seat Selection Charge for Business on BA

Old Apr 4th, 2023, 05:17 PM
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We booked seats in business on BA for later in the year. When we looked at the seats they had assigned us, which were in the middle, we would rather sit at the side. We just called up customer service and asked if our seats could be moved, no problem, and no extra charge. We last flew on BA at Christmas 2021, and they didn't charge for business seats then as far as I can remember.

Last edited by joto; Apr 4th, 2023 at 05:24 PM.
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Old Apr 4th, 2023, 09:01 PM
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joto: Did you book via the BA website or on AA or ?? Do you have One World status?
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Old Apr 5th, 2023, 11:01 AM
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Originally Posted by janisj
joto: Did you book via the BA website or on AA or ?? Do you have One World status?
We did book on the website, and I only have silver, and not a frequent flyer on any airline.
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Old Apr 5th, 2023, 02:05 PM
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BA Silver equals AA Platinum and One World Sapphire so yes, you DO qualify for free seat selection at time of booking.
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Old Apr 24th, 2023, 10:13 AM
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Originally Posted by janisj
It hasn't changed -- been the same for ages. Anyone can select seats for free 24 hours before the flight. But if you are talking earlier than that, you need to be One World Sapphire (AA Platinum) or above to select seats for free at time of booking. Also I think if you book full fare fully flexible tix (normally very expensive).
Starting at Gold, you can book further ahead, increasing with each level.
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Old May 1st, 2023, 10:15 AM
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This seems to be the way that even erstwhile respectable airlines are going. It probably explains why there is a rise in the number spats involving passengers refusing to swap their assigned seats. My upcoming flight with Qatar has a seat selection fee of $98 per leg in business class which I declined. As long as I don't have to share a honeymoon suite with a stranger, it should be ok.
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Old May 4th, 2023, 07:39 PM
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Just to add, I too wasn't aware that they would charge for seat assignments; however, I had some Avios I wasn't able to make use of any other way, so I used them plus a lesser fee to reserve.
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Old Sep 5th, 2023, 01:30 PM
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I just stumbled across this thread while in the process of booking with BA, I was made aware I would need to pay to choose my seat, even one in a less desirable location that would've normally been included as a free option in the past. I last booked a BA flight in November of 2018 and I do not remember paying except for the transatlantic leg in order to upgrade that seat a bit. When I surfed over to purchase it on AA instead, I see that I will have to contact BA for seat selection although the message said nothing of payment.
The cheapest seat is $50, adding a cool $100 to my cost. I mean, they are charging $50 for a seat in the very last row of the plane where the seats don't even recline! Imagine actually paying extra for 10+ hours of that torture.

My question now is, are there any choose-able free seats internationally on Delta or United and their partners?
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Old Sep 5th, 2023, 01:58 PM
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Book BA through AARP to get a discount and then apply promo code CHASEBA10 and pay with a Chase card to get a 10% discount.
(you can join aarp at any age for $12)

Last edited by mrwunrfl; Sep 5th, 2023 at 02:03 PM.
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Old Sep 5th, 2023, 02:09 PM
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Never knew of that benefit! Been an AARP member for 13 years and normally only use it for hotel discounts. I will try this trick. Thanks so much for your reply!
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Old Sep 5th, 2023, 02:39 PM
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Ok, put it all in, went thru the AARP link, but I don't see the AARP discount. Where and when does that show up? Other forums I checked say these two discounts are stackable; It deducted the Chase 10% before I even get to payment.
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Old Sep 5th, 2023, 08:15 PM
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It used to be under the travel tab.

I did a site search for British and got here:
British Airways Discount, an AARP Member Benefit

You get to the BA site for AARP and do your flight search.

To get the Chase discount you need to select BA flights and log into your Executive Club account. Then click on Apply an E-Voucher. Toggle to promo code and enter it.

It you choose an itnerary that is not all-BA then the Chase discount won't apply. You could try it, though. I tried and failed. Also, instead of 10 in the promo code I tried 50 then 30 then 20, because why not. Those failed. The 10% discount worked out for me because the BA flights were best price. Use a Chase card to pay.

Last edited by mrwunrfl; Sep 5th, 2023 at 08:20 PM.
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Old Sep 5th, 2023, 08:27 PM
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When you click on Learn More on the aarp page it talkes you to a BA flight search page that says

AARP member discounts on BA

You can compare the fare results with what is offered by going to the ba site directly. From the wording on the uses ba terms for economy, PE, business class, so ticket probably has to be all-BA. Maybe.

"Members save $65 off World Traveller (economy) and World Traveller Plus (premium economy) or $200 off Club World (business class) fares when they purchase round-trip transatlantic tickets online to over 130 destinations, including Europe, Asia, the Middle East and Africa. Restrictions apply. Online only."

Last edited by mrwunrfl; Sep 5th, 2023 at 08:46 PM.
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Old Sep 6th, 2023, 09:31 AM
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When we flew on BA last April we "only" had to pay for ADVANCE seat selection.
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Old Sep 7th, 2023, 08:20 AM
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I just did a test booking via aarp on BA that included a TATL flight on AA and the $200 aarp discount was applied when compared with the price shown at Google Flights.

It happens now that I get the aarp search page at the BA website whether or not I go via aarp. If I go to their website directly or via GF the search result gives the price with the discount (e.g. GF showed $4412 but when I followed the link it showed $4212 on the BA site). When I opened another browser (firefox), where I had never gone to aarp before, the search result showed the price without the discount.

So it looks like you can get the aarp discount even when the itinerary is not all-BA.

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Old Sep 7th, 2023, 09:32 AM
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Originally Posted by Underhill
When we flew on BA last April we "only" had to pay for ADVANCE seat selection.
That is the problem. I would not have to pay for ADVANCE seat selection on American, other carriers, in business class. I very much want to select my seats in advance.

I assume that I would not have to pay that charge when booking with BA and flying on a codeshare op by AA. I can just go to aa dot com to select seats in advance for free, if I couldn't do that with BA..

I booked LAX-AMS rt with BA for $2440 - 244 chase discount - 200 aarp discount = $1996. The charges for ADVANCE seat selection on the TATL flights ranges from $129 to $186 each way. That would be a minimum of $258 for both which is more than the 10% chase discount that required flying on BA. I will probably pay up for the overnight flight to LHR.

Am thinking now that if I could have paid the same fare with neither discount and flown on AA then I should have done so, as I just noticed that BA switched both long hauls to A380s (no direct aisle access from a window seat, which sucks).

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Old Sep 7th, 2023, 09:47 AM
  #37  
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I've done many A/BA code shares and on the AA website you can only book seats on the AA flights. When we traveled in May, we had to book our BA seats on BAs website. I have oneworld status so there was no charge for advanced booking on BA. Back when I didn't have status, the seats could be booked free 24 hours ahead of the flight.
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Old Sep 8th, 2023, 04:37 AM
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Originally Posted by tallyhotravels
I just stumbled across this thread while in the process of booking with BA, I was made aware I would need to pay to choose my seat, even one in a less desirable location that would've normally been included as a free option in the past. I last booked a BA flight in November of 2018 and I do not remember paying except for the transatlantic leg in order to upgrade that seat a bit. When I surfed over to purchase it on AA instead, I see that I will have to contact BA for seat selection although the message said nothing of payment.
The cheapest seat is $50, adding a cool $100 to my cost. I mean, they are charging $50 for a seat in the very last row of the plane where the seats don't even recline! Imagine actually paying extra for 10+ hours of that torture.

My question now is, are there any choose-able free seats internationally on Delta or United and their partners?
Delta and United do not charge for seat selection on international flights even in regular economy. Delta has a basic econ price where you cant pick a seat at all but that's obvious in the fare class description. Both have fees of maybe 35 to 50 for some preferred locations which are towards the front of economy. You definitely pay nothing if you are near the rear if the cabin. Of course the premium or comfort econ classes are extra for more leg rm but you sure don't pay for seat selection on top of that. I don't fly AA so don't know about them.
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Old Sep 8th, 2023, 10:25 AM
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Its mostly a BA thing (besides some low cost carriers that charge for lots of add ons).

Which is why I usually try to avoid BA metal.
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