How to Successfully Save Seats on Southwest and Uber Hosed in Europe

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About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. Why would anyone sit in a middle seat and try to save an aisle or window seat? That’s plain stupid. My wife and I usually board together, but when we don’t, whoever boards first sits in the aisle or window. That middle seat is likely to still be empty by the time the other one gets there. No need to save it. When we are both there, we sit on aisle and window hoping the middle seat goes empty, and then switch if someone asks for it. Seat saving is not courteous to other passengers. If you want a better seat, pay up. But this is what happens when FA’s aren’t required to get involved.

  2. C’mon Delta……there has to be some blame you can assign to Boeing, and then you can collect from them too.

  3. I would never seat save. If seating was important to us we would pay for the advance boarding for both of us. If one person was saving a seat in a row for 3 I would not respect the seat save if I wanted that row, I would move into the aisle for the row I don’t think I would offer tp swap seats with them either if they were sitting in the middle seat so that my husband and I would sit next to each other. If they didn’t move their stuff which was saving a seat I would pick it up and put it on the floor. I’m not confrontational but I’m not a shrinking violet either.

  4. That seat saving idea is how I handle the folks who full-recline in economy the moment the plane heads down the runway — sneeze and cough quite loudly. Since the recline puts their head inches away from my face, this always works quite nicely.

  5. @gary – I’m confused how you can so arbitrarily find Ga Power not responsible here. Without a thorough understanding of the planning that went into putting all power in a single access tunnel you can’t seriously find in favor of anyone, other than DL. Unless there is a doc proving that Ga Power told ATL that it was a bad idea to put both primary and redundant power in the same passage and that ATL signed off on it anyway I’d think that Ga Power would hold a little burden from this. And using the analogy of spoiled food after a power outage is not the same thing. Maybe more like your food spoiled because of a power spike through the line that fried your fridge is more applicable.

    Either way DL should have known how the airport was powered and should have had concerns about the current state. ATL should have understood the need for multiple input routes for power. And Ga Power should have made concerns of a single point of access known.

  6. I actually surprised Delta didn’t have insurance to cover this sort of thing. I suspect they will in the future. I don’t see how GA power would pay out. They are a regulated monopoly and there is no alternative for Delta to choose. I’m assuming ATL buys power at a negotiated rate and then bills the tenants based on sqfoot lease or something. It’s not uncommon for a power purchase agreement to guarantee a service available percentage but I could also see GAPower having a force majeure clause and arguing that’s what happened and unless they have evidence of negligence that GApower would probably win. Also, we don’t know who owned the equipment it could have been owned by ATL but maybe had a Maintenance agreement with GA Power. Lots of unknowns here to try and figure real liability…

  7. The all time best SW seat saving trick happened when I was in my window seat and granny sat down in the aisle seat and then immediately put the tray down, took the lid off her coffee and threw it away, put the creamers in her coffee spilling them on the table and leaving the creamer cups on the tray table, then sat stirring her steaming coffee while everyone filed past. Drawbridge up!

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