British Air - No seat selection

Aug 13th, 2007, 11:28 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 316
British Air - No seat selection

We were flying home out of Budapest on BA. Due to their rule of no seat selection prior to check-in, we spent half a day prior to our flight at the airport trying to get a seat assignment. This was important because my husband is claustrophobic and needs an aisle seat. The only way we could check in within the 24 hour period was online. We could not check in at the ticket counter or the telephone. TERRIBLE SERVICE British Air!
We didn't have a laptop nor did the hotel have internet access.
Anyone else have a problem with this policy? Any other airlines doing this? We usually fly AA or Alaska and their seat selection policy is great can select at the time of booking.
Marycang is offline  
Aug 13th, 2007, 11:48 AM
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 23,074
Different airlines from around the world have different policies. No right or wrong about that, just different.

If you have to have those seats, just do online check-in. I am pretty sure it's much easier and cheaper to find an internet cafe (or perhaps internet access at your hotel) than going to the airport.
rkkwan is offline  
Aug 13th, 2007, 03:54 PM
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 22,587
A few years ago I was flying BA with my mother. Because we had bought such cheap tickets they told me we can't choose seats in advance. I told them my mom has terrible motion sickness problems and will be sick at her stomach the entire way if she's not by a window. (that is true, BTW) They backed down and assigned her a window seat. I'm sorry for your experience, but if you tell them these things in advance it can make a difference.
P_M is offline  
Aug 13th, 2007, 04:31 PM
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 430
Funny ... I used to always be able to assign seats for myself and family each time I booked flights on BA, but lately (in the last 12 months) they have stopped giving seat assignments - that caused me to think the flights were overbooked so panic set in - either get to airport very early to secure seats or check-in online (this latter isn't easy for the return journey if you do not have internet access while abroad).

Now after reading a couple or so Fodors threads on BA non-seat assignments I have now come to think BA just has stopped assigning seats for people who book.

BA is a pita now. We like to know if flights are full or not.

We use AA a lot and have been happy with this airline, even though there are no direct flights from here to UK - we go via JFK.
BlueSea is offline  
Aug 13th, 2007, 04:44 PM
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 22,587
According to their web page you can get a pre-assigned seat if you are a member of their frequent flyer club.
P_M is offline  
Aug 13th, 2007, 05:36 PM
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 406
Simple membership in the BA frequent flier program is NOT sufficient to be able to get a seating assignment at time of booking. You have "Blue" status when you initially join the program and you need to attain either "Silver or Gold" status in the BA frequent flier program to be able to select a seat upon booking.

Other criteria for being able to get a seat upon booking are: be traveling with an infant, traveling with a full fare flexible ticket or flying "First" status.
GreenDrake is offline  
Aug 13th, 2007, 06:10 PM
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 22,587
I still have a few points kicking around my BA account. I logged in and here are the benefits for blue members. It sounds like #3 would allow seat selection, but it's a bit vague:

Earn BA Miles
Priority waitlist
Seating preference stored and delivered where possible
Meal preferences stored and delivered where possible
Household Account for earning BA Miles
Earn BA Miles with Executive Club partners
Purchase BA Miles
P_M is offline  
Aug 13th, 2007, 06:18 PM
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 380
British Airways please. Well we had a member of our group who suffers as well and we spoke to them and they treated her as a "special needs" passenger and were very very helpfull in assigning an inner isle seat away from a bulkhead.
blightyboy is offline  
Aug 13th, 2007, 06:18 PM
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 23,074
But it's now "not possible".
rkkwan is offline  

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