Seat Allocation

Discussion in 'Your Questions' started by Nick, Jul 3, 2003.

  1. Nick

    Nick Junior Member

    Jun 11, 2003
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    As a Bronze FF, I travelled in Economy class on QF 1 from SYD to BKK approximately 6 months ago. At check in, we were allocated the very back row, Seats 75F and 75G despite checking in much earlier than the allocated time. When asked if we could have better seats closer to the front, we were told that the flight was totally booked and therefore, we had to stay with the seats that had been allocated.

    After entering the aircraft first due to our position, we spoke to the flight attendant while waiting for tackoff and asked her about seat allocation was determined. She proceeded to tell us that seat allocation in Economy was based on the fare that you paid, and had absolutely nothing to do with the time you check in.
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    I'm just wondering what other people with such a wealth of flying experience think about her claim and whether it is true?? :wink:
     
  2. icemann

    icemann Member

    Jan 2, 2003
    268
    0
    French's Forest, NSW
    I'll add my two cents worth here :-

    I would also reckon that being higher up in the status game has something to do with it, regardless of the fare that you've paid.

    E.g. a QF Plat/Gold will get priority over most other mere mortals because of the status, hence, if there are a lot on the flight and aren't flying business, you might find yourself at the back of the plane.
     
  3. Rossmurdoch

    Rossmurdoch Junior Member

    Oct 11, 2002
    42
    0
    Sydney
    Flew Lon-Syd on QF2 in Apr with my partner, Discount Economy as was spending my money this time and no upgrades available. Original seat allocation was well into the 70's. I'm Platinum status so at check in we were moved forward and managed to get a bank of 4 seats to ourselves all the way through.
    So I have to assume it's one of the privileges of status if they can do it for you
     
  4. QF WP

    Moderator

    Jun 20, 2002
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    It certainly is! On Domestic, although there isn't seat allocation there is a tacit seat allocation for Plat, CL and CIP's - according to the preferred in your outline. Then it's whoever can get whatever id left at check-in. i thank my flying every time I get to an airport (not only for quick check-in, but also pre-assigned seating - forward aisle).

    For Intl, of course, you can get preferred seat allocation. Again, it is status based with the seat allocation. Probably a third of the seats are pre-assigned to top tier (Emerald & Sapphire, CL, CIP's), with the CSA's having the rest to give to paxs checking in. That is why I always ask QF Res about how oversold a flight is. If it is -30 in Y (that is, 30 seats sold more than capacity in Y) or worse (i.e. -50), then I'm in line for op up (if I haven't been able to use my points or tier credits for upgrade). Of course, 50 might actually not show for one reason or another, so I probably won't get it as it remains 20 undersold when the flight leaves. If you forget to ask, check on the ITN web site for yourself. If your flight looks like a row of 0's, then know it's going to be a fullish flight. If you have status, then you might be lucky.

    In all honesty, it's the next best site to QF for me. thadocta showed me the ITN website and how to use it - I bookmarked it and use it for everything (i.e. when I'm booking through QF Res, I've already checked the availability through ITN and tell Res I'm looking for "x" class seat - that I know is available)
     
  5. Nick

    Nick Junior Member

    Jun 11, 2003
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    Do you think I'd have any chance of getting marginally better seats as a Bronze FF and a non QC member?? Surely my FF membership, regardless of my status, has to count for something??
     
  6. Rossmurdoch

    Rossmurdoch Junior Member

    Oct 11, 2002
    42
    0
    Sydney
    I'd see if my travel agent could do something at the time of booking, then ask at check-in as well
     
  7. QF WP

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    Jun 20, 2002
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    Nick, it is totally your FF status that means everything to QF when looking at upgrades...QC membership has no bearing on it.
     
  8. thadocta

    thadocta Active Member

    As a Bronze FF, you are second from the bottom - the bottom is non-FF members. Above you are (from the top) Chairman's Lounge, QF Platinum, OW Emerald, QF Gold, OW Sapphire, QF Silver, OW Ruby.

    (I know, I have been slightly tautologous there, but it was to indicate that QF Plat come before all other OWE, QF Gold come before all other OWS and QF Silver come before all other QFR).

    Dave
     
  9. straitman

    Moderator

    Apr 27, 2003
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    Nick,
    As stated above you are at the bottom of the FF pile however you still are a good step ahead of the masses. As has been covered at several other times in various forums, use your charm and good manners and you will still do OK.

    The checkin staff etc will give you a much better go then than the majority and certainly a much better go than the agros who demand everthing :!:

    i.e. make the most of the little you have :!:
     
  10. icemann

    icemann Member

    Jan 2, 2003
    268
    0
    French's Forest, NSW
    And I would agree, because I know of friends, who (completely unconnected to the airline) scored business class upgrades when economy was full.

    And they weren't even members of the FF program (Malaysian Airlines).

    I asked just how the hell they managed to do that, and they didn't know.

    But saying that, I had a gate agent at a certain airport very recently on the BA desk who thought that my QC membership didn't allow you to check in at the Business class desk.

    I understand, from the QC regulations, that you are allowed to, if there is no QC desk there, to check in on a flight at the business class desk, regardless of the class that you're flying. I was flying on a QF flight, with a BA connection to the QF flight.

    The gate agent's behaviour was basically 'I don't want to be here', but I kept my cool and was polite, and firm. In the end, an amicable solution was reached, and I came away from it better than she did.

    It would have been easy to 'lose it', but that doesn't get you anything (apart from a lousy seating arrangement).
     
  11. ejh

    ejh Newbie

    Feb 7, 2003
    8
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    I have never had any co-operation from British Airways with seat allocations being a member of the Qantas Club and a gold frequent flyer means nothing to BA i avoid their flights whenever possible.
     
  12. QF WP

    Moderator

    Jun 20, 2002
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    Well ejh, whilst that is a pity that you haven't had any co-operation from BA, it probably depends on a number of factors:

    1. Your status comparable to other paxs status on the flight you're on (remember OW Sapphire is down the rankings list on a BA flight - QC means nothing in seat allocation)
    2. What seats have already been pre-assigned before departure (remember up to a third are pre-assigned according to status)
    3. What your preference is in your FF profile and whether that profile has transferred across from QF to BA's system
    4. How you treat the CSA when you check-in (from your musing here and other earlier posts...you appear very negative)

    I'm glad you don't like BA...means more seat availability for the rest of us. BA's WT+ is a cut above any OW team's Y offer, their J is very comparable.

    Thanks for your comments though...after all, we are all entitled to our opinion....
     
  13. ejh

    ejh Newbie

    Feb 7, 2003
    8
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    Lindsay,
    Thanks fr your reply, with Qantas my profile is such that because of my height i am normally issued exit rows, but with BA i have always been given lousy seats, despite being very nice and polite and being at the airport very early. It appears that the best seats are allocated to their own FF which I suppose is only fair, one has to look after thier own customers first.
     
  14. QF WP

    Moderator

    Jun 20, 2002
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    ejh, I can relate to your height issue - I'm 6'2" (184cms) and have forward aisle as my preference.

    I've always found that it pays to ring BA separately and confirm that my QF preferences have transferred across.

    Also, BA rate all frequent flyers on BA separately...see BAscoring
     
  15. icemann

    icemann Member

    Jan 2, 2003
    268
    0
    French's Forest, NSW
    And the moral of this story is :-

    Be nice to the Check In person. They can make your seat arrangements very uncomfortable, or very nice.

    As a rule, I am always nice to them, but not a sook. I would expect the same courtesy in return from anyone in customer service.
     
  16. arun

    arun Member

    Sep 5, 2002
    311
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    Sydney
    I always call the airlines (after booking and purchasing the tickets from the travel agent) and give my food preference (I am (more of) a vegetarian) and ask for my seat numbers. In most cases I used to get the numbers in advance (well before the other fellow passengers) and they happen to be good seats.
     
  17. icemann

    icemann Member

    Jan 2, 2003
    268
    0
    French's Forest, NSW
    Question :-

    Do any of the higher member FFs, if you have the unfortunate luck to be in int. coach, ask for a bank of seats together that are empty ?

    What are your chances of getting this ? I say this, because if you want to sleep, you really need a bank of 2-3 seats or more to stretch out.

    I say this, because as a lowly bronze flyer a few years ago, I had from BKK-SYD, a bank of three seats in coach all empty. It was the best mate.
    I stretched right out, had a great sleep and only woke up for the meal service.
     
  18. arun

    arun Member

    Sep 5, 2002
    311
    0
    Sydney
    Yes, I have done it on CX flights. I don't think it has anything to do with the status.

    You can ask at the time of check in to "block" three seats (or four in the middle if you are tall). If the flight is not full, they will be happy to oblige. (I have not tried this on QF though).
     
  19. shillard

    shillard Guest

    I can't speak for CX, but QF's seat allocation engine automatically blocks seats near high-status members. Unless a flight is full, for example, the seat next to me will almost always be empty.

    Others with more OW alliance time than I (Lindsay, for example) may be able to elaborate on the situation with CX.
     
  20. Nick

    Nick Junior Member

    Jun 11, 2003
    40
    0
    I had the exact same experience as Icemann on QF 2 from BKK-SYD a couple of months ago which caused me to ask the initial question for this forum. After being allocated the very back row on a relatively full flight, we were pleasantly surprised to have a block of four seats all to ourself and so that made the trip very enjoyable.

    It's probably easier to get a block of seats up the back of the plane, but having somewhere to stretch out in Economy on a long flight pleases me much more than being squeezed in as tight as possible up the front.
     
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