Seemingly a lifetime ago, I was able to book flights for us from Orlando to Austin, TX and back using British Airways Avios. After finally being able to add my American AAdvantage number to our reservation, I checked on our seating assignments.
For our flight from Orlando to Austin, I was pleased to find out that we’d been assigned two window seats in the front of the Main Cabin area. Although we weren’t getting anything extra, at least we were close to the front of the plane (Note from Sharon: and I get a window AND can kick Joe’s seat LOLOL!).
I’m happy to see we’re getting seats that normally would cost $21 each.
The same was not true for our flight from Austin back to Orlando.
You can’t even see our seat assignments on this flight as they’re way in the back of the plane. I’m not complaining as we’re paying with BA Avios and paying the least miles possible. But what shocked me was the price American is charging for exit row and Main Cabin Extra seats for this flight.
$100 for the bulkhead or exit row. Are you kidding me? This isn’t even a 3-hour flight and you’re charging this much for a bit of extra legroom? When it comes to the bulkhead, I still can’t see the appeal.
Considering you’re charging $30 for the same upgrade on our flight to Texas, you’re obviously price gouging passengers flying on a Sunday afternoon. Those are more likely to be business travelers who need to be in Orlando for a meeting on Monday morning.
If you haven’t noticed by the seat map, no one is taking you up on the $100 price for the exit row upgrade. In fact, almost no one is paying your extortionist prices for the preferred seats either. However, the back of the plane is filled with leisure travelers who aren’t willing to pay for extra legroom.
While American Airlines would like to think that the airport is filled with business travelers (Spoiler alert: it’s not), I’m rather curious if they’re able to fly a plane with the entire front section empty and the last 20 rows full of leisure travelers.
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This post first appeared on Your Mileage May Vary