Families That Fly Together May Not Sit Together

   By drodriguez  May 27, 2012

As if it weren’t already difficult enough to get the whole family packed and boarded onto an airplane for summer vacation, some airlines may make it a little more trying for families to fly this summer.

ABC News reports about a new initiative to increase profit by charging extra for the aisle and window seats which will make it harder for friends and family who are not willing to pay the fee to sit next to each other.

In most instances, in order for family members to sit next to one another on the flight they will have to pay an extra $25. But this fee can add up when you are paying for multiple people on roundtrip flights. One recent flier, Khampha Bouaphanh, ended up paying $114 extra so that he, his wife, and their four-year-old daughter could sit in a row together.

Not everyone is up in arms over the changes. The frequent flier business travelers (who in the past often got stuck in the middle seat) will get the most benefit from the seating arrangement as the window and aisle seats will be set aside on some airlines for them at no extra cost. Eduardo Marcos, American Airline's manager of merchandising strategy, explain “The customers that are more loyal, who fly more often, we want to make sure they have the best travel experience.”

Do you think it’s a smart move for some airlines to charge extra for the window and aisle seats on flights?

Would you pay extra to sit next to your friends or family while traveling?

Make a Comment

corwinky by corwinky | Tacoma, WA
Jun 08, 2012

They should raise the prices by $50 across the board and stop charging for seat assignments and the first bag.

niagre by niagre | Brooklyn, NY
Jun 07, 2012

It is kind of silly to not seat families together, it should make travelling with young kids easier, which in turn should make it a more comfortable flight for other passengers.

wagarific918 by wagarific918 | Barnegat, NJ
Jun 01, 2012

I think it is silly to charge extra for window and aisle seats. However, I fly with Spirit airlines and I like to have the aisle seat, so if I know I am not going to get to the airport at a reasonable time, I will pay for my seat ahead of time. I also travel solo with my 7 year old daughter, and ALWAYS pay for our seats ahead of time. It guarantees that we will sit together. It is silly that they do not automatically give you seats together, but I do not want to risk being separated.

monson42 by monson42 | PHOENIX, AZ
May 31, 2012

I think the airlines are out of control and trying to charge you for everything. It's to the point where I don't want to fly anymore. It is just ridiculous to charge for you to sit with your kids, especially if they are small.

Your1chef by Your1chef | Spring Hill, FL
May 30, 2012

I think that there should be an exception when traveling with young kids. I have a 5 & 2yr old and had to pay extra so I could sit with my kids. The airlines should be glad that families are wanting to fly, we could drive and save money.

Texmel by Texmel | COLORADO SPGS, CO
May 30, 2012

Sounds like they don't really want our business. This definitely shows that the airline is only concerned about its bottom line and not about the customer. Let's see, baggage charges, unstable employees wacking out in-flight or on the runway, now separating families with small children from one another. Makes me really WANT to fly!

buttercup3 by buttercup3 | Portage, IN
May 30, 2012

A few years ago I flew with my family on Air Tran. They tried to separate my family. They had me sitting with my 2 and 4 year olds, my husband by himself, and my 6 year old by herself. They had her all the way up front and us all the way in the back. They had no intention of changing it and I had to pitch a major fit to get it fixed! I asked what they planned to do when she got scared during take-off and started crying and I couldn't get out of my seat to get to her. The guy had the nerve to tell me that it was against their policy to have anyone under 12 sitting alone. HELLO! Your the ones who did it and were arguing about fixing it!

Hiiyooitscat by Hiiyooitscat | LOS ANGELES, CA
May 30, 2012

wth... that is unneccesary.. but now that I think about it .. every flight I go on.. was never an assigned seat flight.. it's always been a free for all.

SimplyDavia by SimplyDavia | HUNTSVILLE, AL
May 27, 2012

I think that this is getting way out of control...I think that there needs to be an across the board list of services kind of similar to an alacarte menu..this way everyone knows what to expect when traveling! There is constantly changing rules for flying, charges for this and that! I can see why people have flight rage and are up in arms! I can say that I have decided to stop flying and to drive across country because not only the cost overall is cheaper..there is zero confusion about added charges! This again is another attempt at US AIRLINES..trying to treat people like $$$ not people!

lillamissa by lillamissa | Hebron, KY
May 27, 2012

I can understand looking for ways to increase their revenue without creating a general price hike. Sure, I'd like to not have to pay extra for the premium seating, but I see the benefits in charging it. What I dislike is the notion that the one senator is proposing, that families should be exempt from the fees. If there is going to be a fee for a preferred seat option, I don't think that a family should not have to pay that. Families would have the option of booking early, like everyone else to attempt to get the best options, or pay extra for the conveniences if they book late.