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I'm so angry at BA after our long-haul flight with a 5 month old - anyone else?

(57 Posts)
townsender Thu 10-Mar-16 20:53:54

I've just had the worst flight experience on a long haul return flight with BA, the first with our 5 month old baby.
In both directions, we got moved at checkin from the bulkhead bassinet seats which we had reserved months in advance. On the way out, we both got moved to normal seat positions, and on the way back then my husband got moved, leaving me with the baby and bassinet sitting next to a stranger (and I am still breastfeeding - not fun with limited elbow room). Both times it was people who had paid for extra legroom who got our seats, not other people with infants.
I have complained to BA and asked for an explanation, but just got a load of generic waffle back from their customer service center.
Has anyone else had this experience, or was I just very unlucky to get it twice in a row? I don't think it is BA's official policy to prioritize customers who pay extra for legroom over customers with infants, but in my experience this seems to be the case.

Floggingmolly Thu 10-Mar-16 20:57:37

Of course the people who paid extra were prioritised over you confused. The "but I've got children" card doesn't work here; you had the option to pay extra for those seats yourself.

LittleRedSparke Thu 10-Mar-16 20:58:36

Did you pay for the extra legroom seats?

DontCareHowIWantItNow Thu 10-Mar-16 20:59:14

Of course if they have paid more they are prioritised. Why wouldn't they be?

TooMuchOfEverything Thu 10-Mar-16 21:01:02

I think you should be given whatever you reserved. If they wanted you to pay more they should ask at that point of reservation.

JeanSeberg Thu 10-Mar-16 21:01:38

Why would passengers with infants get priority over those who've paid extra for a certain type of seat?

NerrSnerr Thu 10-Mar-16 21:02:43

Did you pay for the extra seat?

Gisla Thu 10-Mar-16 21:02:53

we got moved at checkin from the bulkhead bassinet seats which we had reserved months in advance

Did you pay to reserve them? If so, then definitely complain.

If not, then were you told that despite reserving the seats, you may be moved if someone else pays for them? If not, complain that you should have been given the option to pay for them to make sure you had reserved them.

GreenTomatoJam Thu 10-Mar-16 21:02:56

bulkhead bassinet seats which we had reserved months in advance

Sounds like they'd booked them in advance to me, what with OP having said that she had and all (and last time I flew BA, you could pay to book in advance, or take your luck on the day - there wasn't reserve ahead for free)

That's pretty off of BA - I'd keep complaining you should get a refund of whatever you paid to book the seats.

NerrSnerr Thu 10-Mar-16 21:02:56

Not seat, legroom!

tinkerbellvspredator Thu 10-Mar-16 21:03:52

From my experience of booking BA they allow families with infants to reserve seats for free so presumably you don't have the opportunity to pay . And at any rate if they've let you reserve a seat you would expect that to be the seat you got, why would you think otherwise.

Haffdonga Thu 10-Mar-16 21:04:57

I'm guessing there were disclaimers when you booked, warning you that there was no guarantee you'd keep those seats. You chose them because you had more space. Other people were prepared to pay extra for that space.

It was bad luck for you but nothing to be angry about.

fastdaytears Thu 10-Mar-16 21:10:16

I'm confused. Did you have the option of booking and paying for these seats?

MissBattleaxe Thu 10-Mar-16 21:17:14

I would definitely complain. You reserved them. You had a small baby. You are a customer and you had made advance arrangements to suit your needs. If those seats were likely to have been given away you should have been informed or asked to pay for them.

Try social media. Twitter has worked for me a couple of times when I've been pissed off with various customer services dept.

LittleRedSparke Thu 10-Mar-16 21:30:05

from their website

Child seats and carrycots supplied by us (for infants from birth up to two years)

You can reserve a seat in advance for a carrycot/child seat position on the aircraft (on long haul flights only). Child seats and carrycots are free of charge, *but subject to availability once you are on-board the aircraft. *You'll see the carrycot/child seat positions on the seat map in Manage My Booking. If you don't choose a seat in advance, we'll allocate a suitable seat for you three days before departure, but this might not be at a carrycot/child seat position.

Please note: Due to operational reasons, we may not have sufficient carry cots or child seats on-board for each reserved carrycot position.

so if you havent paid in advance, you cant bank on having one - however, if they lead you to believe you would have one, then .....?

BoomBoomsCousin Thu 10-Mar-16 21:30:29

That is awful OP. If you reserve them you should expect to get them barring some unavoidable clash with greater need.

Trollicking Thu 10-Mar-16 21:31:41

Some people need the extra leg room for medical reasons.

We sometimes used to book a seat for our DC when they were babies or toddlers.

LoveBoursin Thu 10-Mar-16 21:34:15

But then surely, they should make very clear that it is possible to book the seats with the extra room so you can have the bassinet too??

BoomBoomsCousin Thu 10-Mar-16 21:34:41

The child seat or carrycot is a separate thing Little. You need to be in a bulkhead seat to be able to use the carrycots. Theoretically, you could be in a bulkhead seat and they run out of carrycots, but that's different from being moved from the bulkhead seat.

ExitPursuedByABear Thu 10-Mar-16 21:35:41

I can understand why you are cross. But it looks like you don't have a leg to stand on.

LoveBoursin Thu 10-Mar-16 21:36:19

Troll I've done that too and confued a few flight attendants that then had amjor issues with the counting of passengers grin
Bt the big difference is that you KNOW you can book a seat for a toddler whereas there it's unclear that you can book the seats (and which ones) that will allow for the use of the bassinet.

confusedandemployed Thu 10-Mar-16 21:38:58

The ambiguity of the t&cs is terrible. If you reserve something you expect to get it. BA should not be offering to "reserve" a seat for one passenger only to fuck them over for the highest bidder. Either it's reservable or it's not.

OP YADNBU.

Blu Thu 10-Mar-16 21:40:16

That para from the BA website says nothing about paying: it says you can book the positions in advanced, but the actual carry cot or child seat to go with that position is subject to availability. So if everyone wants a carrycot rather than the child seat, or vice versa, they might run out.

Keep complaining !

Want2bSupermum Thu 10-Mar-16 21:44:59

That is very poor customer service. Fair enough if someone in a wheelchair needs the seat but with a baby where you can use the bassinet and you had booked it in advance, they should have honoured your assigned seat.

I would be kicking up a fuss with BA. Their website says nothing about your requirement to pay extra for the seat that comes with the bassinet.

In future consider KLM for long haul. We have found them to be the very best with young children. Our routes are US - Denmark and US - UK. Jet Airways (the Indian airline going through Brussels) is excellent if heading East.

fastdaytears Thu 10-Mar-16 21:53:53

I wouldn't assume that a seat would be held if someone offered to pay for it and I hadn't paid, but regardless that wording is really unclear and they need to make this a lot more obvious so that you can decide whether to pay or risk it.

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