Next week I am taking my family to Disneyland. It’ll be the first time in 12 years that I have visited, and I have mixed feelings about the trip. I’m not a fan of crowds, lines, and most of the other things that visiting a theme park entails. But…I know that seeing our kids’ happy faces will be entirely worth it.
(SEE ALSO: 9 tips and tricks I learned at Disneyland)
(SEE ALSO: 6 mistakes I made at our first time at Disneyland)
Although driving to Disneyland is technically an option for us (it’d be a long 12 hours), I decided flying was a much better choice. The most cost effective option was to drive to the Bay (only 5 hours) and fly into Santa Ana airport. Plus, I caught the perfect Alaska flight on a fare sale. And Alaska was still my selected airline for my Business Platinum Card, so I figured I better make use of the 50% back perk while I still could.
After booking our flights for a mere 19,200 Membership Rewards for 5 people, I purposely selected seats near the back of the plane. I avoided the last row since it is right next to the lavatory. After our first time flying with kids, I realized that the back of the bus is a great place to be with our little ones.
Why do our sets keep changing?!?
Oddly, I have now gotten 3 notifications via Award Wallet that our seats have been changed. The first time I panicked since I knew that we could be in trouble if they had split us up poorly. I mean…the first attempt at seating us together was a major fail. But that one was Amex’ fault.
(SEE ALSO: Delta just SPLIT UP my family!)
After logging in and taking a look, things weren’t all that bad. I had to move a pair of us closer to the rest of the family, but other than that, the changes weren’t a problem. The weird thing was that there weren’t any other people seated in the rows around us, save one person in the last row. So why did Alaska change our seats?
The second and third times were just as puzzling. This time people had moved, but the overall arrangement was maintained. There was no equipment change (every time the seat map still showed an ERJ-175), and both flights were changed each time. I really have no explanation.
At this point, our flight is next week, and the plane is pretty full. If Alaska changes our seat assignments again and other people move into the seats, we could be in trouble.
But I am confident things will work out. If worse comes to worst, we can just try and ask people to switch, and I’ll write a complaint to Alaska. Why they keep changing the seat assignments is beyond me.
Anyone else ever experienced this issue after booking a flight?
Featured image courtesy of BriYYZ under CC 2.0 license.
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I also experienced seat changes, but with American on a long haul flight, LAX to NRT. I have Platinum status, so I was able to choose a Main Cabin Extra seat without additional fee at the time of booking, and I chose my preferred seat: an aisle seat toward the front of the MCE section, but not the very first row (looked to be adjacent to the lavatories).
A couple weeks before the flight, I checked my booking online and noticed my seat was now assigned to a middle seat. Oh the horror! And my original seat selection was now unavailable as someone else had seemingly booked it. I received no notice or explanation for the change. Ultimately I was able to change my seat back to an aisle seat a couple rows behind, but not until several hours before departure, which is when I have noticed seat available in the MCE in particular start varying widely, likely as passengers start checking in for the flight and begin selecting/deselecting seats that typically carry a surcharge.
Question as I am not as frequent a flier as you are, but I thought once you chose your seats you were confirmed. Is this not what actually could happen? Or is this when using ff miles or points?
Unfortunately, no. The airline can change them, and they supposedly *try* to keep your party together. The most common seat change trigger is an equipment swap, where they change the type of plane for the flight.
So annoying and it is happening to me and my husband flying and paying for First Class – no points just good old cash! Tried contacting United to no avail! And apparently they have the right to do this and don’t care about Good will!! It has never happened before in the 50+ years we have been flying. Thanks United & likely next time we’ll just choose another airline they same way you chose other seats for us after all one good turn deserves another!!
In First? That’s crazy. I’d definitely be upset if we didn’t sit together.
Fear not we are upset! So we will use the power of our pen and not fly United. Doubt they will notice but that is part and parcel of most airlines today. So vote with your pocketbook first and foremost.
Your post prompted me to recheck seat assignments for our trip to Maui next week. Sure enough, Alaska has changed our seats on the return leg. I originally booked three seats across in the middle of the plane. Now, we are at the back but split in two rows! WTF!! I’ll be calling Alaska on this. Not acceptable.
That’s super frustrating. I’d drop them a note. We are actually flying SJC-OGG in a few months. I hope the same doesn’t happen to us then!
Yes, on an Alaska award flight on AA, my spouse and I had a far back row of just 2 seats (2nd to last row where the plane narrows). We booked the ticket last April! Last month I noticed we were moved to two window exit row seats (some row, opposite window seats) right next to the lavatory. Same plane.
Why? While the extra leg room is nice (these seats have a large emergency exit protrusion) the constant lights on and traffic = not fun. The flight is now completely booked. WTF?
I frequently have my seats changed the farther out I book. Doesn’t have to be an equipment change. Sometimes at the airport I am able to get better seats when I explain what happened with original seats.
Alaska does this to me roughly half the time. Far, far more than other airlines. In First Class (whether via dollars or points), they often move passengers for deadheading crew/pilots. It’s kind of a bait and switch. One buys a ticket in part because they think they reserved a specific seat. Then, they just change you.