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prebooking flight seats?

(94 Posts)
Beth2511 Mon 09-Jan-17 10:11:25

im flying domestically to go see my very unwell grandma and flying alone with a 2 year old and 5 month old.

i can barely afford the flights but i dont have any other eay of getting there and unlike lastvtime i did it they want £28 for me to book seats which is 30% of the cost of the tickets and also £40 for luggage.

ultimately its going to be a choice between taking luggage or guaranteeing im sat with my 2 year old. i definitely cant afford both but i think because of the age of my two and going for 5 days that im going to have to take luggage.

if i didnt prebook seats would they really sit me apart from my 2 year old. she'd probably have a great time as she loves making friends but she is also mastering the terrible twos..

dont know whether to risk it!

WorkAccount Mon 09-Jan-17 10:13:00

the airlines definition of together is a lot looser than anyone elses.
I think you need to investigate a different way to get there.

LagunaBubbles Mon 09-Jan-17 10:13:14

It depends on what airline you are using. When we flew BA they had a policy of seating the under 12s with an adult.

Rosa Mon 09-Jan-17 10:17:06

WHat airline ? I would also go for the luggage option as you will have your hands full with the children. If its mid week on a non 'rush hour' route then I would probably risk the seating

VintagePerfumista Mon 09-Jan-17 10:18:53

All airlines must seat children "next to" a parent/adult.

Be warned, that might be in the row in front, behind, or across the aisle.

I've never seen any of these separations tbh but I wouldn't risk it, especially at a stressful time. flowers

Is it Ryanair? I think their pre-booking now costs 50% less for kids. (same with luggage iirc)

soupmaker Mon 09-Jan-17 10:19:47

I'd risk it Beth.

If your on a domestic flight it's likely to be lots of business folk not lots of other families who will want to sit together.

Make sure you check-in online as soon as you can as you'll have a better chance of getting seats together.

I'd be amazed if any airline put a 2 year old in a different row to their grown up. He might be across the aisle but I'd be pretty confident a passenger would help you out by moving so he could sit beside you. Especially as you'll have the wee one on you knee.

EssentialHummus Mon 09-Jan-17 10:20:24

Which airline, and is it during a school holiday by any chance?

Some airlines' definitions of "together" include in front of/behind, which is problematic in your circs.

Can you book seats for free closer to the time of the flight/during online check in?

BusterTheBulldog Mon 09-Jan-17 10:22:05

I've been on an air Canada flight where a 4 and a 6 year old were sat nowhere near parents. Kids sat together, parents separately in completely different areas.

Spam88 Mon 09-Jan-17 10:24:32

With easyJet we've never booked seats and we've always been sat together. We just always make sure we check in online as early as we can.

EssentialHummus Mon 09-Jan-17 10:25:17

buster but surely they can then swap among themselves so the 4 yo is with a parent?

Chicken4dinner Mon 09-Jan-17 10:29:22

Which airline? BA's definition of together means separated by no more than one aisle.

The problem about asking people to swap onboard is that they may have paid to reserve specific seats and/or to sit together and may be unwilling to move.

Mari50 Mon 09-Jan-17 10:31:54

Depends who you're flying with, I use easy jet a lot, i always check-in online as soon as check in opens and I've always been allocated a seat next to my DD.

Beth2511 Mon 09-Jan-17 10:36:55

its flybe and definitely in term time and non rush hour times.

looked into driving but my toddler really doesnt tolerate the car well and gets very travel sick and the baby obviously cant be in his car seat too long so i dont think id manage to safely drive it on my own with the amount of screaming between the pair of them.

train involves going through london on underground and about 6 changes and with a pushchair, suitcase and two car seats and 2 kids i really wont manage that. plus it works out twice as expensive as flying

DailyFail1 Mon 09-Jan-17 10:40:59

On your head be it if your toddler finds himself next to a family/person who did pay then refuses to move to let you all sit together. I personally think you should have prioritized the toddler here - stuff can just be bought when you're down there.

zofranks Mon 09-Jan-17 10:41:58

I would risk it - tbh if someone sat a 2 yo next to me & the parent was elsewhere I would offer to swap (and have done in the past) - most people wouldn't worry about swapping and I am am sure the staff at Flybe would be as helpful as possible.

BarbarianMum Mon 09-Jan-17 10:42:20

Can none of your family give you £28 to book seats? If not you are just going to have to risk it.It will almost certainly work out ok.

BarbarianMum Mon 09-Jan-17 10:44:39

Daily if the OP doesn't have £28 to pay for sitting together she's hardly going to be able to start buying clothes/toys/ baby equipment when she lands.

EssentialHummus Mon 09-Jan-17 10:44:59

From a quick Google you can't choose a seat during check-in with FlyBe, but seats are allocated in order of check-in, so if you log on as soon as the 36(?) hour window before the flight starts, you should be OK.

EssentialHummus Mon 09-Jan-17 10:46:48

daily OP said she could barely afford the flights. It's a trip to see an ill family member, not a holiday jaunt to Marbs.

chillie Mon 09-Jan-17 10:48:56

Pay for the luggage. When you get onto the flight, if you are not sat next to your toddler then just tell the person next to your toddler that your toddler is sometimes airsick and here are some bags and wipes and 'good luck!', then go sit down. I would be amazed if they don't swap with you.

EssentialHummus Mon 09-Jan-17 10:52:40

That's not helpful chillie. Flies/honey/vinegar?

mrsm43s Mon 09-Jan-17 10:55:18

I'd be inclined to book the seats rather than take checked baggage. Remember, you'll have 2 hand luggage allocations, so pack light, and wear your coats/jumpers/boots etc. Honestly, legging and long sleeved t shirt type wear for all of you, doesn't take up much room, you should be able to fit into hand luggage. You may need to wash and dry an outfit or two while you're out there, but that's doable.

JacquesHammer Mon 09-Jan-17 10:55:20

Pay for the luggage. When you get onto the flight, if you are not sat next to your toddler then just tell the person next to your toddler that your toddler is sometimes airsick and here are some bags and wipes and 'good luck!', then go sit down. I would be amazed if they don't swap with you

I'd simply say "oh dear, better tell the steward then" and plug my headphones in.

OP - I think in your situation I would try and book in as soon as you can once online check in opens. Or contact the airline and see if they are willing to offer a solution in the circumstances.

VintagePerfumista Mon 09-Jan-17 11:13:01

I do think you need to bear in mind that if the offer to book seats is there, and most people have taken it up, then they are not going to move for you. Why should they?

I always book seats for me and dd (travelling alone) and once a couple asked if they could have our seats because they only liked sitting in a certain part of the plane. Whilst sympathetic to anyone getting the heebs over planes, I'm afraid I just said no, and called the steward over. I'd paid for my seats, they hadn't paid (either for mine, or their own) they had been allocated seats and didn't like them.

I think domestic flight you would probably be OK, and you might well be seated together, but I just wouldn't risk it. Handluggage allowances are fairly generous these days, especially if you take a fabric bag rather than a hard case.

theothersideoftheworld Mon 09-Jan-17 11:19:04

I watched 'rip off Britain' on Friday. On there they stated that although the airlines try to get you to book and pay for your seats, they can't sit you apart from your child.
Apparantly it's law (civil aviation £ that children have to sit with an accompanying adult. However she did say that this might be the next row, or one behind.

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