Well I had to learn this the hard way. I leave in a week for my trip to Cozumel, Mexico. When I was shopping for airfare, my beloved Delta didn’t offer any options for me out of Rochester to fly down to Cozumel so I had to look around. I ended up booking with American Airlines through my American Express Travel portal for my Platinum Card. This is not the way to go about booking an extra seat. Today I’m going to show you how to book an extra airline seat.
Reasons for an Extra Seat
- Passenger of Size Policies: Most airlines require plus size passengers to purchase an additional seat. Some airlines will refund you the ticket price. Here is a list of the different policies on each line.
- Covid-19: The only US-based airlines that are currently blocking middle seats are Delta, Hawaiian, Southwest, and Jetblue. Other airlines like American and United claim that they are limiting flights to 85% capacity.
- Service Animals: Some people like to have the extra space when are traveling with a service animal so they don’t disturb other passengers.
- Medical: People with medical reasons could also seek an extra seat so that they are more comfortable when flying.
I booked a reservation for Jeff and I through amextravel.com and then I booked another reservation with my name on it again through the website. A couple days later I noticed that my extra seat confirmation number disappeared in my American Airlines app. I called American and they said I had to call American Express Travel to find out what was going on. After calling AMEX they said that American voided it because it was a duplicate and that I would have to call them back to book the additional ticket. The airlines do not allow them to book “extra seat” reservations.
I called American Airlines back and received some clarity on how the situation should work. They said what I should have done was book my two tickets through AMEX and then called them for the extra seat ticket. Since my reservations were made a few days prior, the rate was cheaper than it was when I called this time. American Airlines refused to honor that pricing so it cost me about $40 more to book this ticket unfortunately.
Things to Remember when Booking an Extra Seat
- Call the airline directly for the extra ticket reservation immediately after you book your primary reservation. You cannot have two reservations under your name. They in essence create a ticket with the name “Extra Seat” and tag it to your reservation.
- You will not get charged the Passenger Facility Fee or the Segment Tax (segment tax is on international flights only) on the “Extra Seat” reservation.
- You can earn miles for the “extra seat” flight. It goes to the person who is attached to the reservation.
- Price is at the prevailing rate. Sometimes entities like American Express Travel and other third booking sites have promo prices so keep that in mind. There could be a fare differential.
Well I can honestly say that I learned something new. When in doubt, just call the airline directly prior to booking anything. I decieded that I wanted the middle seat to travel more safely during this Covid-19 pandemic. We didn’t want to be shoulder to shoulder with someone so for us it was worth it to book. The cost was still less than the other airlines who are blocking middle seats as well.
I hope you enjoyed this article on how to book an extra airline seat. For more airline tips check out this post!