Author Topic: Airlines' tricks was random seats on Queasyjet  (Read 791 times)

Martin

  • Give me bas relief
    • WWW
Airlines' tricks was random seats on Queasyjet
« on: August 15, 2019, 12:34:03 pm »
If it's a special occasion or likely to have nice views I often splurge the £5.99 each to get window seats near the back. I did get randomly allocated two right at the back last year on a flight to Seville only to find out that they were not next to a window ;-( a rapid chat with their online team and crossing their palms with Visa got them changed.

What seats do peeps usually get given at random and does it make a difference the nearer to flight date when you check in? I know some airlines actually provisionally allocate you seats when you book. It used to be the case that if you booked flights through their holidays website they actually told you what seats you would get for free before you committed or paid up at check-in but they've stopped that now.

I tend to assume that Ryunfair just put you on the wings unless you pay £££

telstarbox

  • Loving the lanes
Re: random seats on Queasyjet
« Reply #1 on: August 15, 2019, 01:01:02 pm »
This was last summer so unless things have changed: We completed and paid for the easyJet booking without selecting particular seats and were still given seats together. However the nearer you get to the flight date, it's more likely that other people are taking the seats which means there are fewer 'pairs' left.

Generally you won't be given a 'free' seat in the front rows or exit rows as these are the most expensive seats to select.

Ryanair is different and will deliberately split you up.

MSE article backs this up: https://www.moneysavingexpert.com/travel/airline-seating/
2017 - R500 ✅ | 2018 - R1000 ✅ | 2019 - ?

Martin

  • Give me bas relief
    • WWW
Re: random seats on Queasyjet
« Reply #2 on: August 15, 2019, 01:07:43 pm »
There's usually a slow filling up of overwing seats backwards as soon as check in opens (30 days before) but they seem to be in pairs. Even so you can wait until they have gone and still get bad ones,

seats right at the back (as long as they have a window) are no big deal these days as they seem to put steps up the back everywhere now including Gatwick

Martin

  • Give me bas relief
    • WWW
Re: random seats on Queasyjet
« Reply #3 on: August 22, 2019, 11:43:27 am »
I just spun the roulette wheel and didn't pay at check-in, got two seats together but not window  :( another chat and £11.98 got them changed at no extra charge over what it would have been before check-in :)

Beware the very back row of seats (which you can't reserve) unless you like spending the flight looking at a plastic panel!

caerau

  • SR x 3 - PBP fail but 1090 km - hey - not too bad
Re: random seats on Queasyjet
« Reply #4 on: August 22, 2019, 01:09:06 pm »
I refuse to play ball with paying for seat bookings.


However, I was building up airmiles/avios for a long time - since it's no longer any use building these up as far as I can tell, I am now using the remaining thousands to be spent on booking flight seats in advance as my wife and I got separated on a flight back in March (our original booking disappeared in the failure of FlyBMI) and although I can cope with this, my wife is a terrible traveller and it's just not worth putting up with the endless whinging (sorry dear, but you know it!).  I have seriously considered using the method the A Team used to get Mr T to fly ;). I have so many avois that hopefully this will last the rest of my life.


I've managed to avoid ever flying Ryan Air but I'm told that if you book as a couple - or family - and *don't* pay to book seats, then they deliberately separate you on the flight so that you will be pressured into paying.  Apparently what then happens after take off is that half the passengers get up and move seats to sit next to one another.   This is apocryphal, but I really hope it's true - supposedly it proper winds up the flight crew  :-D



It's a reverse Elvis thing.

Martin

  • Give me bas relief
    • WWW
Re: random seats on Queasyjet
« Reply #5 on: August 22, 2019, 01:20:45 pm »
I try to avoid Ryanair at all costs (living near Gatwick helps) I did have to use them a couple of months ago as the ferry I was planning to get to Spain broke down and it was them or sit in Barcelona airport for 5 hours. As we were also planning a week there I paid £12 each for not only a big bag but also a reserved seat. On a £9 flight!!! so I was relieved to have saved a ton of dosh over the ferry and having had our plans disrupted didn't want any more disruption.

The airlines will tell you it's to keep costs down to the budget conscious traveller but does the "select your own seat" facility actually cost them anything? BA used to do it for free but you had to be quick; check in opened 24hrs before the flight and there was a huge onilne rush for everyone to move to a window seat. I think they have now stopped it unless you pay the "hold baggage included" fare

Also EJ charge £5.99 for a seat to the continent but £3.99 internally or Channel Islands

It was fun in the days before the budget airlines allocated seats, if you didn't pay speedy boarding it was first in the queue, as soon as boarding opened all these seasoned businessmen rushed to the desk like schoolchildren.

Until Ryanair 2 months ago i never paid for priority boarding it seemed pointless as no-one was going anywhere until everyone was on board. But easyJet have a new trick, if you don't pay for speedy the later you get through boarding the more chance they will nab your cabin bag and put it in the hold then make you wait ages at the carousel at the other end.

Re: random seats on Queasyjet
« Reply #6 on: August 22, 2019, 01:37:29 pm »
The airlines will tell you it's to keep costs down to the budget conscious traveller but does the "select your own seat" facility actually cost them anything?

It's not the cost to them, it's making it cheaper for the people that don't care where they sit.

It also allows the airlines to advertise lower fares but still bring in the same total revenue.
"Yes please" said Squirrel "biscuits are our favourite things."

Martin

  • Give me bas relief
    • WWW
Re: random seats on Queasyjet
« Reply #7 on: August 22, 2019, 03:38:31 pm »
The airlines will tell you it's to keep costs down to the budget conscious traveller but does the "select your own seat" facility actually cost them anything?

It's not the cost to them, it's making it cheaper for the people that don't care where they sit.

It also allows the airlines to advertise lower fares but still bring in the same total revenue.

I think generally the budget airlines generally operate on lower margins than the national ones;

When I first went on easyJet over 20 years ago the inflight magazine showed 2 737s, one an easyjet one BA, and showed that half the seats were already filled by BA through using eg Heathrow, giving away loyalty flights, less seats due to business class, direct booking rather than travel agents, actually employing rather than contracting staff which EJ didn't etc. So even if BA sold every remaining seat at the same price as EJ they would never break even. BA learned from this by launching Go, IIRC they were very restricted on how much they could subsidise this company (probably after Laker) and in the end they admitted they couldn't compete and EJ bought Go. 

These days most airlines are moving towards the budget model. Filling up half the plane with really cheap sets enables them to rake this back by stinging people who absolutely have to go at short notice

Re: random seats on Queasyjet
« Reply #8 on: August 22, 2019, 04:56:47 pm »
I think generally the budget airlines generally operate on lower margins than the national ones;

Sure, but the principle of mix and match pricing applies to both.

Imagine a theoretical flight with 200 passengers paying a flat fare of £50 each (i.e. £10k income). Luggage is included, as is picking your seat. Airline gets to advertise a fare of £50pp.

Then someone notes that a fair number of passengers travel hand luggage only, so to fund cheaper fares they make people pay for checked luggage.

It magically settles down to 50% of the passengers paying £20 to check in bags, and the other 50% travelling hand luggage only.

The total revenue for the airline is the same (£10k) but the headline fare is now £40pp.

Repeat this for picking specific seats. Plenty of people on the flight simply won't care, or won't be prepared to pay for it (I never have and have been lucky that my family was never split up enough for us to do something about it). Whatever income it provides can be used to further drive down the base fare. If 25% pay £10 to pick their seats then you can knock off another £2pp to bring the advertised fare down to £38pp.

Dynamic pricing is a further extension of this. Offer even lower headline fares and recoup the "lost" money as the plane fills up, with the last minute passengers who have to get that particular flight getting screwed the most (I've been this person on many a flight but usually for business panic reasons and not personal reasons). Easier to do if you have premium/first class as you'll eventually get to the point that the higher class seat isn't much more than economy, which will make it more appealing to some people anyway.

Even the non-budget airlines have cut back on freebies (sandwiches, drinks, etc) on short haul flights in favour of a paid-for trolley service.
"Yes please" said Squirrel "biscuits are our favourite things."

Martin

  • Give me bas relief
    • WWW
Re: random seats on Queasyjet
« Reply #9 on: August 22, 2019, 05:20:42 pm »
well the airlines have figures for who brings a bag, who pays for a seat and even who buys a beer so they must use this as "fixed" income for the flight and can then set their fares accordingly.

Ryanair used to say "bring as much hand luggage as you like" as it cut down the dwell time at airports but now they have cottoned onto the fact that

a) most people need more than a tiny bag under the seat and if everyone brought a big cabin bag half of them would have to go in the hold costing them money and time
b) putting in the luggage fee as an unseen part of the headline fare for most passengers keeps their prices low.
c) they can sting passengers who bring a big bag having not paid thinking they will get away with it for a much higher price than online, after all you're not going to leave it or half the contents behind.

They appear to have lumped speedy boarding reserved seat and bigger bag into the same package too so it's easy to distinguish groups of passengers at boarding and get them in the right queue.

The Ryanair flight I went on in June was £9 to Spain, it was even that price a day before and the plane was half full. I suppose they think that keeping those seats at that price on a plane that's got to fly anyway will encourage a few "spur of the moment" passengers who then might bring a bag choose a seat and buy a beer.

At least they now have to quote the actual fare it will cost you including APD booking fee and credit / debit card fees rather than advertising flights for 1p or even free

I was unlucky today because easyJet had lots of free seats at the back so were able to lob us into seats next to someone who had paid for a window seat, but it didn't cost any more to choose nicer seats after the event. Top Tip is to go to book on the same flight for a new booking and look at how many seats and where are left before going back and taking pot luck on your existing booking.

Re: random seats on Queasyjet
« Reply #10 on: August 22, 2019, 06:01:04 pm »
c) they can sting passengers who bring a big bag having not paid thinking they will get away with it for a much higher price than online, after all you're not going to leave it or half the contents behind.

EasyJet also make it very difficult to work out whether you've booked a bag or not. It's not obvious on either the printed boarding passes or looking at the booking online. I'm sure this web "dark pattern" is intentional to make some people pay for checked in bags more than once.
"Yes please" said Squirrel "biscuits are our favourite things."

Martin

  • Give me bas relief
    • WWW
Re: random seats on Queasyjet
« Reply #11 on: August 22, 2019, 06:54:58 pm »
That's true

I went to Greece this year on a package that included an easyJet flight booked by the tour operator

I had to email the operator to confirm it was included

Bikes seem to show up on the booking though

Re: Airlines' tricks was random seats on Queasyjet
« Reply #12 on: August 23, 2019, 12:00:33 pm »
As someone who books hundreds of flights (but hasn't been onna plane since 2012), there's almost certainly a correlation between the number of times you'll visit an airline's website to check prices, and the prices rising accordingly.
In my office we've found that regularly clearing cookies alleviates this issue.

Mr Larrington

  • A bit ov a lyv wyr by slof standirds
  • Custard Wallah
    • Mr Larrington's Automatic Diary
Re: Airlines' tricks was random seats on Queasyjet
« Reply #13 on: August 23, 2019, 06:32:14 pm »
The thieving bastards at Air Canada quote you a price and only when you're most of the way through the booking procedure do they tell you that actually having a seat - ANY seat - will be an extra £35.  And no, you can't sit on the floor.
External Transparent Wall Inspection Operative & Mayor of Mortagne-au-Perche
Satisfying the Bloodlust of the Masses in Peacetime

Martin

  • Give me bas relief
    • WWW
Re: Airlines' tricks was random seats on Queasyjet
« Reply #14 on: August 23, 2019, 07:16:47 pm »
I tried to book 2 return flights to Canada with WestJet. The multi city fare coming back on 3 hops (as otherwise we'd have to go all the way back to Toronto to get back to Gatwick) was a very reasonable £400. However when you tried to book two it leapt to £1600! Even trying to book 2 independently.

A long phone call to  Calgary eventually sorted it.
We didn't have to pay for seats or to use the toilet but just about everything else. Still a very good experience apart from trying to find the secret public bus to St Johns (although a transatlantic 737 must be a bit of a cop)

hellymedic

  • Just do it!
Re: Airlines' tricks was random seats on Queasyjet
« Reply #15 on: August 23, 2019, 07:48:47 pm »
Was that an oblique reference to Fascinating Aïda?

Martin

  • Give me bas relief
    • WWW
Re: Airlines' tricks was random seats on Queasyjet
« Reply #16 on: August 23, 2019, 09:21:34 pm »