When flying to your favourite destination city, you will surely prefer the most comfortable seat on the plane. In fact, everybody does, no matter if your journey on the flight is just two hours or a much longer one. When you book a flight, the airline randomly assigns a seat to you for that travel class.
However, if you are not aware, you can also select your seat assignment, which is possible if you book a reservation in advance. It is also possible to request a seat assignment at the airport’s check-in counter, and the staff would be glad to assist you.
In this travel guide, we will share with you a few essential tips on how to get the best seat on a plane you are travelling.
Things Passengers Usually Look for When Selecting Seats in an Aircraft
Different passengers may have different needs and preferences when it comes to seat selection. Choosing the best seat will also depend significantly on the specific aircraft you are flying. Aside from personal comfort and needs, the width of an aircraft matters, too, since there are narrow and wide-bodied aircraft that are operated by airline companies.
Here are some common preferences for seats that vary among travellers when flying with an airline carrier.
- Middle seat
- Window seat
- Wing seat
- Bulkhead seat
- Exit door seat
- Seat with legroom or extra legroom (also seat pitch)
- Storage space under the seat for luggage
- Reclining seat
- Seat with armrest
- Class of cabin (since seats may differ in each class of cabin)
If you wish to pick a seat preference during or after booking a flight reservation, keep in mind the airline may or may not charge a fee for the service.
Tips to Get a Good Seat on Your Flight
Here are some useful tips that will help you decide which seat on a plane will give you the most comfortable experience during your trip.
Avoid Noise and Travel in Peace
Noises such as the sound of in-flight announcements to babies/children and conversations among passengers are common on an aircraft. In addition, there are also other noises or sounds which you simply can’t avoid. However, seating yourself in certain seats may help you fly more peacefully than getting annoyed during your journey.
If you are a person that loves quietness and likes to travel peacefully and avoiding all sorts of noise, then choosing a window seat or a seat in the front of the plane would be ideal.
First-time Flying Fear
If you are flying for the first time or you are not an experienced frequent flyer, you may have many fears. For example, if the weather is bad, the plane you are travelling to may experience turbulence, which really gives a scare to most passengers on board.
So, if this is what scares you the most when flying, it is suggested that you choose a seat close to the plane’s wings. Also, it is best to avoid picking seats at the rear of the plane, since the effects of turbulence is pretty rough towards the end of an aircraft.
Demand for More Legroom Space
Most travellers will want more space for legroom, mainly because of their physical appearance. It is seen that usually tall and overweight persons have trouble adjusting in the seats on the plane. Therefore, they require more space to sit comfortably during their flight.
Also, some travellers may prefer legroom space just so that they can stretch their legs and relax, which is also common among travellers.
Now, depending on the design and layout of the aircraft you are travelling to, keep in mind that the availability of legroom may vary. So, when you book a flight and want to pick a seat, make sure to check your seat’s “seat pitch”. A seat pitch is a measurement of how much legroom you can get for a particular seat, and it varies from one travel class to another. A typical seat pitch can range between 28 inches (71.12 cm) and 32 inches (81.28 cm).
If you want more legroom, you can also choose bulkhead or exit row seats. A bulkhead seat is located in the first row of a dividing wall inside the plane. This gives you ample space to stretch your legs and relax.
Sleep, Sleep, and Away!
Late night and overnight flights can be tiring and boring for some travellers, so they will just prefer sleeping away on the journey. In addition, if you are travelling on a long-haul flight at night, you would really need to asleep.
Thus, to make your night journey comfortable, choosing a bulkhead seat should be ideal. As already mentioned above, a bulkhead seat gives you more legroom space than any other seat on a plane, since the seats are located in the front row of a dividing wall, curtain, cabin, galley or lavatory. There is enough space for you to stretch your legs and sleep for a couple of hours and not feel cramped.
Also, in order to not disturb your sleep, avoid seats that are located near the lavatory, galley, and aisles.
The seat that Matters You the Most
You should always look out for seats that really matters to you the most. Seats that are located in front of the exit row are usually non-reclining seats. However, it could be possible that on planes with two exit rows, the first row of seats does not recline, while the second row might have reclining seats. Also, some bulkhead seats may have the limited reclining capability, and seats in the last rows often do not recline, either.
Bear in mind that seats with the tray table stored in the armrest, too, can reduce the width of the seat. And, if you are planning on using electronic devices for entertainment and/or work, such as laptop computer, tablet, smartphone, portable audio/video player or game console, you will want to make sure that your seat has integrated power outlets in order to keep your devices charged and usable.
Getting the Best Seat You Want
Generally speaking, it is your personal preference that plays a key role when it comes to getting the best seat on a plane.
Thus, knowing which seat you should choose in order to avoid noises or turbulence or choosing a reclining seat for comfort will go a long way. However, to make the most of your flight experience, it is also a good idea to take a look at the seat maps when booking your reservations. This will ensure you get just what you are looking for, and easily avoid things that could hamper your experience during the flight.
When you are certain what seat on the plane you want, there are a few other ways that can help you increase your chance of getting the best one.
Booking your flight reservations early on certain airline carriers allow you to pre-select a seat of your preference. However, keep in mind that this may depend on the availability of seats during booking. So, your best bet is to book your reservations as early as possible in order to grab the opportunity of getting the best seat that you want.
Alternatively, you can request a seat selection at the airport’s check-in counter. Or, if you are checking in online, be sure to check in at least 24 hours before your flight’s departure. This may give you an opportunity and you will likely be prompted to select seats that you couldn’t before, or that were not originally available for selection, like frequent flyer seats which can open up when these fliers upgrade.
Also, it’s always best to look for upgrades. This increases your chances of scoring great deals and flying experience as well.