Even though I have flown more than 1.5 million miles, I am always learning something new about travel. This week’s lesson came from a source close to home.
My husband flew from Orlando to Los Angeles this week. He was on the upgrade list for First Class and was #1 on this list. Unfortunately there were zero open seats left. Before boarding his coach seat, he asked the gate agent for a ‘better’ seat in coach. He was moved back several rows from his original seat, where no one was in the middle seat, so he had more room to spread out. He thought he’d be in great shape for his 5-hour flight.
He was excited to connect to the internet with a free GoGo Inflight code and he got busy sending me messages from 30,000 feet up. Then the tone of the messages got more and more frustrated as his laptop battery went down and down. He had a great GoGo connection and no juice to take advantage of it. Two hours into the flight and the laptop died.
A quick check with SeatGuru and his internet time would have lasted the entire flight.
Here’s why you want to use SeatGuru before you fly:
- SeatGuru shows you which seats have power outlets.
- SeatGuru tells you the best seats to try to get. Here’s their key to the great level of detail they have:
- The vast details that SeatGuru provides can mean the difference between a very enjoyable flight and one where you swear you’ll never fly again. Frequent travelers swear by SeatGuru.
Guess what? Had my husband stayed in his originally-assigned coach seat, he would have had a power outlet! One of the flight attendants gave him this bit of frustrating news.
Here’s how SeatGuru shows which seats have power outlets:
Notice the black dots between the front-most coach seats and not all of coach? Ah, had he know!?!?!?
Wouldn’t it be great to score a Good Seat and end up with extra leg room or one that has a power outlet? This is much better than ending up with a Poor Seat that you unknowingly selected (or was given to you by the airline).
A few other notes about SeatGuru …
- How do you know what type of aircraft you will be on? Check your reservation online with your airline. Your flight number will display. If you do not immediately see the type of aircraft, click on the flight number and you may see further details about your flight. If you cannot find it online, call your airline for assistance.
- One person’s ‘poor seat’ may be another person’s ‘good seat.’ Find the seat that you prefer, no matter what the coding indicates. For example: bulkhead seats may often be coded as poor seats if they have limited legroom, but some people prefer bulkhead seats so that someone else’s seatback doesn’t come crashing into their knees. It’s all personal preference.
- If a ‘good seat’ isn’t available to select, see my Travel Gem on March 1st to find out the best time to recheck your airline’s website to see if a ‘good seat’ opened up.
- For us mobile-phone addicts, you may ask, “Can I access SeatGuru information via my mobile phone?” You bet! Check out SeatGuru’s page on accessing their mobile site at http://www.seatguru.com/articles/mobile_launch.php. They also have a page on iPhone apps: http://www.seatguru.com/articles/iphone_travel_application_reviews.php.
I hope this lesson that my husband and I learned this week helps you in your future flights. Be a well-informed flier and enjoy the seat on your next flight!