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Seat Allocations on Delta - parents/kids together

Mackay, Australia
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Seat Allocations on Delta - parents/kids together

Flights booked Las Vegas to Los Angeles via Delta early October. Aussie family of 4 (2 adults + 2 kids aged 12 & 8). Economy flights booked through our travel agent, but don't have tickets/booking # yet. Viewed flight online, available seats on the flight shows there is not a group of 4 'available' seats showing up, or at least 2 seats together so parent/child can be together. I'm a overprotective Mum and would not want my children to be seperated from us, and know the kids would be anxious if seated next to strangers. I have tried to find a 'policy' on the Delta webpage, with no luck. Can anyone advise what would normally happen. Would we be allocated seats next to our children once we check in? There are 'available' seats in economy confort, would we be upgraded and allocated them (presuming they are still available) ??? Any advice greatly appreciated as I'm a bit worried.

South Pole
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1. Re: Seat Allocations on Delta - parents/kids together

one of the pitfalls of dealing with travel agent i guess.

call delta and get it sorted out.

delta.com/help/…index.jsp

Edmonton
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2. Re: Seat Allocations on Delta - parents/kids together

Your travel agent should be able to take care of this for you. However, sometimes pre selected seats are closed to booking anymore if you are too close to departure, they are holding some back for airport check in, etc. Often there are seats held back for seat selection to be given at the airport. I have never had my clients not be able to sit with their kids in 15 years (I also travel with my kids and don't normally pay to select a seat unless I can get the front row). I have never been denied and we have never even been split up (the four of us), but I guess it could happen it would be 2 and 2. I highly doubt they would split kids from their parents, becasue in all reality, other people don't want to sit with your kids either. I don't think you will have a problem, but if you are really worried, call Delta when you get your confirmation number (it will be a 6 digit letter/number combo) and pay to have seat selection. If it is already closed to seat selection, just ask at the airport at check in. You really shouldn't have a problem. I doubt they would upgrade you, more likely they would upgrade the person they move to accommodate you. that would only be one seat they would be upgrading instead of two.

Good luck:)

Edited: 20 August 2012, 04:04
Bangkok
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for Bangkok, Air Travel, Thailand
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3. Re: Seat Allocations on Delta - parents/kids together

Hi,

I'd either call early and speak to DL or get to the airport early and get it addressed.. Pretty much the earlier you get this addressed, there should be more seats available as options.

Airlines do hold back X% of seats for 'gate' use, though the X% is unknown and not uniform across all airlines, flights, or aircraft type.

DL, like most US carriers doesn't have as a formal policy that it requires or otherwise entitles parents to be guaranteed a seat next to their children.

The principle airline passenger regulator-- the US Dept of Transportation-- has not addressed this, and their rules (the DOT) tends to be what most airlines use as the base-line for their own in-house rules and policies.

Given LAS and LAX are big(ger) service cities for DL, I wouldn't be surprised at all if the seat map as it shows right now in their system, looks VASTLY different than it does at departure time as passengers either cancel/change their plans, get delayed, or other issues..

I think the key here will be getting it addressed EARLY ON as you probably won't be the only person with some form of a seat change request of some type or need.. so the longer you wait the fewer options you'll have barring last minute passenger changes.

Travel Safe,

Mackay, Australia
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4. Re: Seat Allocations on Delta - parents/kids together

Many thanks for all your replies. Great information and advice. We will be getting our tickets issued by the travel agent very soon so once I get a booking or confirmation # I'll contact Delta and see what they can do. Thanks for the link to the Delta information number in Australia!

Park City, Utah
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for Utah, Winter Sports
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5. Re: Seat Allocations on Delta - parents/kids together

For sure this is something your travel agent should manage - that's why you're paying them.

But in any case, you do have the ability to go online and do your own seats. As long as there are four seats (or two and two) available in your fare class, you can book them yourself. If the seats are restricted due to economy comfort or other priority seats, you'll need to upgrade to economy comfort (which I would recommend). DL is not going to just give you an EC seat just to get you close to the kids. And they can't give you emergency row.

If you are not together in advance, do talk to the gate agent. You would have more chance of getting an empty EC seat there than you would in advance.

But ... again, if you've chosen to book with a travel agent make them earn their money.

Portland, Oregon
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for Air Travel
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6. Re: Seat Allocations on Delta - parents/kids together

If your travel agent is of the reputable full service type (as opposed to an online booking agent) then I'd agree to ask them to do their job.

If you don't get anywhere that way, then call Delta.

If you still don't get anywhere, then make sure you have the PNR (reservation number that maried11 refers to), and access your reservation on delta.com very frequently. Seats do free up, especially nearer the departure date, and the more often you check the more likely you'll spot some seats to nab. Don't just wait for a 3 or 4 to come available either. If two seats together come up, nab those for two of you. Even though I travel mostly solo, I've got out of middle seats and into exit rows many times that way.

Good luck.

Killingworth...
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7. Re: Seat Allocations on Delta - parents/kids together

Be persistent with your travel agent or call Delta . I would not fly them for this year's vacations because this is exactly what happened to us last year - no kids but seats not available til gate despite being purchased 6 mos out . Eventually we got seat assignments and boarding passes only to find others in our seat on the plane with the same seats assigned - same thing happened on return trip but we got to the seats first. Many families were separated as half a family got seats and the rest of the family was bumped. They apparently overbook quite a bit. Booked with US Air for all trips this spring and summer with only one small issue out of 8 trips.

Mackay, Australia
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8. Re: Seat Allocations on Delta - parents/kids together

Just been back onto Trip Advisor and see the additional replies, thanks for your advice. I have just emailed our travel agent (which is a very reputable 'full service' provider) asking them to sort out if they can. If I get no reply ASAP I'll ring and hassle them. I am happy to buy seat allocations, especially if I can lock in seats together, don't mind if its 2 x 2 in different rows, just as long as we can have parent+child together. If no luck that way I'll contact Delta direct and see what assistance they can give. I appreciate all the knowledgeable advice you have all given.

Milford, Ohio
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9. Re: Seat Allocations on Delta - parents/kids together

One thing that was not mentioned - typically online, you may not see ALL the open seats. For example, if I do not log in using my skymiles number with Delta, I only see non-premium seats. If I log in with my skymiles number, I see premium seats also. The gate agent can also help in the event that you can't get your travel agent to help. Trust me, no one wants to sit by someone else's kid!

Illinois
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10. Re: Seat Allocations on Delta - parents/kids together

I have been split up from my daughter (although not on Delta), so it can and does happen. The most recent time was last April on Lufthansa where you can not choose seats until check in (or at least I couldn't find a way).

It looks like that's only about an hour flight (according to Kayak), so although I know it is concerning, the children should be ok. Most of the time on a 1h flight, most of it is spent taking off and landing.

Personally, I would prepare the children in advance that this is a possibility, so they know what to expect. After all, seat assignments are not guaranteed, so you could end up separated even if you had seats assigned together now. Make sure they have something non electronic to do (since you can't use electronics during takeoff and landing which will probably be most of the flight). Plan where you will meet them (I'd go with the start of the jet bridge where the wheelchairs usually wait).

That said, when I have been split up from my daughter in the past, we have generally been able to get seats together by asking at the gate. I've never actually asked anyone on the plane to switch with me. She is now 14 and said that she didn't mind sitting by herself on the Lufthansa flight, so I didn't try to move. About a year ago she flew with my mother and they moved her to be next to my mother. After the flight she said she wished they hadn't because her first seat was better.

Don't know if it's the same on Delta, but I have noticed on United that if I pay for Economy Plus there are usually a lot of seats open even after regular Economy gets full.