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to not want to pay £100 to guarantee that our kids can sit next to us on the plane

(613 Posts)
mumsnit Wed 17-Jun-15 21:08:16

DH wants us to pay £25 each to guarantee that we can all get seats together when we go on holiday next month. Aibu to think it's a ridiculous cost to pay out shock

But I have heard that one airline refused to seat a family together as they hadn't paid the premium and tried to seat a 3 year old alone on the other side of the plane from the parents. We don't go on holiday very often - especially abroad and I'm already nervous about flying so don't want this added to the stress of travelling.

WWYD/WDYD - do you pay the extra cost?

Fairylea Wed 17-Jun-15 21:09:53

It's a bit daft but unfortunately it is stated quite clearly in the documents etc that you need to pay the premium to guarantee seats together so I think deliberately refusing to pay it is a bit of a gamble really.

PtolemysNeedle Wed 17-Jun-15 21:10:36

Some airlines will separate families if they need to, others won't. You need to find our what your airline is likely to do before deciding.

SoupDragon Wed 17-Jun-15 21:10:53

If you want to guarantee you are all sitting together, you pay the fee to book seats together.

Hygellig Wed 17-Jun-15 21:11:11

We flew with Ryanair to Portugal recently and didn't pay for allocated seating. I did the online check-in the morning that it opened (seven days before) and we received three seats together and one across the aisle. I'm not sure how much it would have cost had we paid for allocated seats.

conniedescending Wed 17-Jun-15 21:11:21

I'd be paying to guarantee not to be near my kids

kinkyfuckery Wed 17-Jun-15 21:11:40

If you don't want the stress, why don't you agree with your DH and pay it?

It's part of your holiday costs, surely you budget for it?

TeenageMutantNinjaTurtle Wed 17-Jun-15 21:11:49

I would pay it. But I'd also check if another airline works out the same price or cheaper after all the extras are added on. Try SkyScanner.

Ubik1 Wed 17-Jun-15 21:12:33

I never pay it and always manage to sit next to my children.

kinkyfuckery Wed 17-Jun-15 21:12:38

grin @ connie

Scoopmuckdizzy Wed 17-Jun-15 21:13:59

I think yabu. If you're that anxious about flying you need to pay it, at least it's a weight off your mind and you won't be worrying about it. I wouldn't be risking sitting apart from my children and people tend to get arsey when asked to move because they feel they should be entitled to seats together but haven't paid.

redexpat Wed 17-Jun-15 21:14:49

The consensus on these threads is always either pay for peace of mind, or accept that you may not get to sit together. The online check in as early as possible might help but its no guarantee.

backinthebox Wed 17-Jun-15 21:16:38

Pay the cost if you want to sit together. Once upon a time, you paid more for your flights and got everything included - baggage allowance, in flight meal, seats together, etc. The low cost carriers have stripped every possible item out of the equation in order to advertise the lowest headline fares, and then drip-fed the extras back in, each with their own separate fee. It's a model that customers have shown they like, so it's been adopted by most airlines now.

Airlines will not deliberately refuse a family seats together IF there are seats together. But neither will they move other passengers who have paid to reserve seats in order that your children can sit with you. If it is stressing you, pay the cost. Next time, search out an airline who will seat you together without the fee, if you don't want to pay it. Your tickets will probably cost more though, because you pay for it one way or another.

CakeNinja Wed 17-Jun-15 21:16:49

I have never paid to book seats and have (sadly!) always been sat with my children.
It's a risk we take. Don't gamble if you're not willing to lose!

SiobhanSharpe Wed 17-Jun-15 21:17:26

If thre are four of you, I think they wil at least try to put your DCs with at least one adult, i.e. you might be in two groups of two, or a three and a one, and would try to ensure a young child is not seated on its own away from its parents. But easyjet doesnot charge to select your seats, unless they are the'premium' ones, up front or extra legroom etc. with BA you can select your seats when online check-in opens 24 hours before the flight.

WhatWouldFlopDo Wed 17-Jun-15 21:18:56

I was worried about this when we flew with First Choice/Thompson's earlier this year. We checked in as soon as the online check in opened, about a week before the flight, and were given seats together for our party of 5 (me , DH, 3yo DD, and my parents) then we paid to move my parents away from us

ChickenLaVidaLoca Wed 17-Jun-15 21:19:40

£25 per person is bloody outrageous though. This is one of the many reasons I try to fly as little as possible.

cuntycowfacemonkey Wed 17-Jun-15 21:19:57

As long as you don't expect someone who has paid to move to accomadate you it's fine not to pay and take a chance. Personally I always pay, like you say why have added stress?

mimolette Wed 17-Jun-15 21:21:39

What's the airline and will they allocate seats in advance? These days the main budget airlines (Easyjet, Ryanair) will let you check in X days in advance and allocate seats at that point. Set an alarm, check in as soon as you can and you should be fine. If your only option is to check in at the airport you could try to arrive super early but that's far more risky...
Also depends how old your kids are. If I was seated next to a solo 3 year old, I would swap seats with one of its parents in a flash ;-) Conversely, a 10 year old can entertain themselves for a couple of hours.

Gemauve Wed 17-Jun-15 21:22:59

An airline which placed a child away from its parents would be doing so in clear breach of CAA rules and could be, in the limited, grounded for doing it. It would be extremely dangerous in an evacuation, and if an airline tried that on to extract money from the parents ("I have heard that one airline refused to seat a family together as they hadn't paid the premium and tried to seat a 3 year old alone on the other side of the plane" seems a bit weak: which airline, which flight?) then a complaint to the CAA would see them in a great deal of trouble.

The precise rules are here:

Ubik1 Wed 17-Jun-15 21:23:17

Ryanair and easyjet seem to board families straight after the numpties who have shelled out for special speedy boarding.

There always plenty of room.

Ruperta Wed 17-Jun-15 21:23:28

We didn't pay last year (just didn't think about it). They sat me (I had a 8 month old), my husband and a two year old on completely separate seats around the plane.

Tbh I think it's a disgrace you have to pay to sit next to your two year old. Luckily one nice couple swapped with us (nobody else near would swap with us - which I also think is pretty sad reflection of our society).

Had we taken off in separate seats I would have loved to have seen how the two grumpy women who refused to swap with us entertain him for the 4hr flight.

Gemauve Wed 17-Jun-15 21:25:13

Sorry, pressed enter too soon.


"The seating of children close by their parents or guardians should be the aim of airline seat allocation procedures for family groups and large parties of children.

Young children and infants who are accompanied by adults, should ideally be seated in the same seat row as the adult. Children and accompanying adults should not be separated by more than one aisle. Where this is not possible, children should be separated by no more than one seat row from accompanying adults. This is because the speed of an emergency evacuation may be affected by adults trying to reach their children.

Whenever a number of infants and children are travelling together the airline should make every effort to ensure that they can be readily supervised by the responsible accompanying adults."

For those that don't read CAA rules for fun, "should be the aim" and "every effort" are CAA-ese for "fucking well do this or you'll find yourself grounded like an episode of Cabin Pressure gone wrong, matey boy".

Whathaveilost Wed 17-Jun-15 21:26:56

Jeez, is it a month with a vowel in for this to topic to come round again!

Postchildrenpregranny Wed 17-Jun-15 21:28:01

I think most people would happily swap to enable a young child and parent to sit together . We never flew when my Dcs were very young but have always risked it and at worst have sat 'two and two ' Few planes have 4 seats in a row anyway .
I do remember a stewardess on an intenal flight from Boston to Newark (about an hour) was really cross because the checkers-in hadnt seated a nine year old and his mum together. She 'made' a lone businessman move seats...

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