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Old Jun 19, 17, 12:30 pm   #1
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Question Seat choice showing all unavailable?

hi,

I've just been booked by our company travel agent for a last-minute trip to the US, flying out on Wednesday 21st. Our company policy allows for premium economy on long-haul, so that's what I'm booked in.

Normally the seats are all assigned automatically at the point of booking, but when I log into MMB in my BAEC account, the LHR - DFW segment simply says "seat choice available".

And if I click on reserve a seat, here's what the seat map looks like (attached)...

Ummm... what does this mean? Why can I not select a seat?!
Attached Images
 
TownCar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jun 19, 17, 12:34 pm   #2
  
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Looks to be a particularly busy service:

Results from https://www.ExpertFlyer.com
Code:
Flight Availability Search
Departing LHR on 21/06/17 0:00 for DFW
Flying BA  
Direct/Non-Stop Only
Point of Sale: UK


                                                                     Frequency
Flight        Stops  Depart             Arrive             Aircraft  Reliability     Available Classes
0 Connections
BA 193        0      LHR                DFW                744       W               F9 A8 J9 C0 D0 R0 I0 W9 E5 T0 Y5 B1 H0 K0 M0 L0 V0 S0 N0 Q0 O0 G0 
                     21/06/17 11:55     21/06/17 15:45               60% / 27m
Here is the seat map:

Results from https://www.ExpertFlyer.com
Code:
Seat Map Search:
Departing LHR on 21/06/17 for DFW
Flying BA flight 193 in First, Business/Club, Premium Economy

        A   B       D   E   F   G       J   K   
33  W   X   -       -   X   X   -       -   X   W   
34  W   -   -       -   -   -   -       -   -   W   
35  W   -   -       -   -   -   -       -   -   W   
36  W   -   -       -   -   -   -       L   L   W   
        A   B       D   E   F   G       J   K   




Seats
Premium Only             P                        
Available                +                        
Handicap-Accessible      H                        
Paid & Premium           #                        
Occupied                 -                        
Blocked                  X                        
Lavatory                 L                        
Paid                     $                        

Location
Exit Row                 E                        
Wing                     W                        
Upper Deck               U
I would be expecting a few upgrades on this service.
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Old Jun 19, 17, 12:36 pm   #3
  
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If there are two sectors under one flight number and no one single seat is available for both sectors (i.e. you'll need to change seats at the first stop) MMB might not be able to cope.

Not going to be the case for LHR-DFW

I expect the flight has been deliberately overbooked
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Old Jun 19, 17, 12:42 pm   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rossmacd View Post
I would be expecting a few upgrades on this service.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ned1968 View Post
I expect the flight has been deliberately overbooked
Ah, ok, thanks - I was worried in case it meant there was a glitch or problem with the booking, but if it's just overbooking (and there's space for upgrades) then that's ok.

Sadly I suspect that on status-heavy routes such as these, there will be plenty Golds that get upgraded into J in order to free up a seat in W for me!

(Thanks for the ExpertFlyer results too!).
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Old Jun 19, 17, 12:59 pm   #5
  
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BA target upgrades now in an effort to tempt you to book a higher class of travel in future, it does not follow that golds will get upgraded over you.
I think the seat map shows a number of in occupied but blocked seats? The block should come off soon?
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Old Jun 19, 17, 1:10 pm   #6
  
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On a recent DXB in WTP I was upgraded to CW both ways, as was my companion - separate bookings both Gold. I definitely think status does increase chances
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Old Jun 19, 17, 1:17 pm   #7
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Originally Posted by Skipcool3 View Post
BA target upgrades now in an effort to tempt you to book a higher class of travel in future, it does not follow that golds will get upgraded over you.
I think the seat map shows a number of in occupied but blocked seats? The block should come off soon?
I know that some seats are blocked for status holders, but would they keep the block even when no other seats are available for selection by Silvers or below? The only time I've ever been upgraded is on the return leg of holiday travel in March this year, from KEF to LHR. Not a very status-heavy route I guess, lots of tourists like myself on the flight, a bunch of us were upgraded from a similar area on the plane to make space for a decent sized group of Chinese folk who were all travelling (and sitting) together. Everyone that I could see getting upgraded was also of status. Sadly I have never had the chance to experience business class long haul.
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Old Jun 19, 17, 1:25 pm   #8
  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TownCar View Post
I know that some seats are blocked for status holders, but would they keep the block even when no other seats are available for selection by Silvers or below? The only time I've ever been upgraded is on the return leg of holiday travel in March this year, from KEF to LHR. Not a very status-heavy route I guess, lots of tourists like myself on the flight, a bunch of us were upgraded from a similar area on the plane to make space for a decent sized group of Chinese folk who were all travelling (and sitting) together. Everyone that I could see getting upgraded was also of status. Sadly I have never had the chance to experience business class long haul.
See Here for details of BA's Upgrade Tool. There seems to be plenty of evidence that BA generally upgrade based on commercial opportunity. WTP is also a bit of a sweet spot.

The block seats are infant seats and if not reserved will be available at online check in T-24.

What would I do? I would try to check in online early if you can get a seat assigned. Turning up a bit later on in the check in process has helped me a couple of times in the past when booked in WTP. I've only done this twice and so far have a 100% success rate. Still, check out the DUT thread.

Good luck!
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Old Jun 19, 17, 2:43 pm   #9
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Originally Posted by lavajava View Post
The block seats are infant seats and if not reserved will be available at online check in T-24.
Thanks for the link to the DUT tool, but it doesn't appear to be working at the moment.

So yes, i could either check in early and try to grab an unblocked A or K seat (which is fine by me), or leave it as late as possible in the hope that all allocation is gone and I get upgraded (or alternatively there's no choice left and I have to take a 33E/F seat. Still surprised that the seat blocking prevents me from choosing - surely they know so far whether anyone so far is travelling with a baby? What's the logic in blocking the bassinet seats at this stage - just in case of last minute bookings with babies?)
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Old Jun 19, 17, 3:03 pm   #10
  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TownCar View Post
Still surprised that the seat blocking prevents me from choosing - surely they know so far whether anyone so far is travelling with a baby? What's the logic in blocking the bassinet seats at this stage - just in case of last minute bookings with babies?)
I've never been clear on that myself, I think they may be attempting to guard against people telling them very late they have a baby but then opening them for selection at OLCI seems strange.

You can usually phone up and request you be manually assigned those seats, I've done so previously when no other exit/bulkhead seats were open and it's usually been a 'we'll submit it but will depend if the seating team do it etc...' but it's always come through.
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Old Jun 19, 17, 3:20 pm   #11
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In the OP's shoes, I'd check-in online at the very first opportunity. If there are no seats available, keep checking every few hours, you are better to have a seat than not to have one. And if s/he has bags to check-in, do so at T-3 hours. If going later or via an alternative route is an option, then by all means think that through, and what your price may be for this, but overall this is heading for an involuntary upgrade from what I make out. However I don't think the aircraft is totally oversold, from my reading of those numbers, though it appears to be so in WT. (I'm guessing this will link in to some services from India, if these connecting services run late then all bets are off!).
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Old Jun 19, 17, 3:31 pm   #12
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Originally Posted by corporate-wage-slave View Post
In the OP's shoes, I'd check-in online at the very first opportunity. If there are no seats available, keep checking every few hours, you are better to have a seat than not to have one. And if s/he has bags to check-in, do so at T-3 hours. If going later or via an alternative route is an option, then by all means think that through, and what your price may be for this, but overall this is heading for an involuntary upgrade from what I make out. However I don't think the aircraft is totally oversold, from my reading of those numbers, though it appears to be so in WT. (I'm guessing this will link in to some services from India, if these connecting services run late then all bets are off!).
Thanks for your expertise! Are you implying that if I don't check in soon enough and all seats get allocated, that I may be bumped off the flight through overbooking?

This is actually the middle leg - I'm going NCL-LHR-DFW-STL. Going later is not an option as I need to be in our office in St Louis first thing Thursday morning. Alternative routes... well, this is the alternative route as there was no availability on the usual (and quicker) route.

Hoping to go hand baggage only, just about to verify my case packing plans tonight!
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Old Jun 19, 17, 3:42 pm   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TownCar View Post
Thanks for your expertise! Are you implying that if I don't check in soon enough and all seats get allocated, that I may be bumped off the flight through overbooking?

This is actually the middle leg - I'm going NCL-LHR-DFW-STL. Going later is not an option as I need to be in our office in St Louis first thing Thursday morning. Alternative routes... well, this is the alternative route as there was no availability on the usual (and quicker) route.

Hoping to go hand baggage only, just about to verify my case packing plans tonight!
Ah, ok, these extra details are actually quite critical. Because you are an "on carriage" passenger, my hint, correctly picked up, about downgrading should not apply, you're off that list, or rather way down the pecking order. Moreover you can check in a few hours before LHR based travellers (though presumably after those from India etc). NCL won't be able to see much happening, so I doubt you'll be rerouted either. I would still check in on the dot of T-24. I would check in for NCL only first, get your boarding pass, then check in immediately for DFW, but don't be too worried if it doesn't initially let you do so. Just try again every hour or so. And good luck for any magic bleeps.

HBO is the way to go!
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Old Jun 19, 17, 3:51 pm   #14
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Originally Posted by corporate-wage-slave View Post
Ah, ok, these extra details are actually quite critical. Because you are an "on carriage" passenger, my hint, correctly picked up, about downgrading should not apply, you're off that list, or rather way down the pecking order. Moreover you can check in a few hours before LHR based travellers (though presumably after those from India etc). NCL won't be able to see much happening, so I doubt you'll be rerouted either. I would still check in on the dot of T-24. I would check in for NCL only first, get your boarding pass, then check in immediately for DFW, but don't be too worried if it doesn't initially let you do so. Just try again every hour or so. And good luck for any magic bleeps.

HBO is the way to go!
Ok, cheers! If I can manage HBO and check-in for NCL-LHR online, then NCL won't see much of anything happening as my first encounter with them will be at the gate (well, excluding the lounge).

However, in recent months I've never been able to OLCI for the US-bound segment, either via the mobile app or online. It always says they need to verify my documents. I've always presumed that it's because I'm connecting from a domestic flight, but then stopped and wondered how that is different from starting at Heathrow because either way, the first time my passport & ESTA is checked is at Heathrow.

I shall cross fingers for the special bleep at the gate at Heathrow!
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Old Jun 19, 17, 4:19 pm   #15
  
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[QUOTE=TownCar;28462446].

So yes, i could either check in early and try to grab an unblocked A or K seat (which is fine by me), or leave it as late as possible in the hope that all allocation is gone and I get upgraded QUOTE]

Leaving it as late as possible is a bad strategy lest the person in 68D vacates to take 61A/K leaving you, should the upgrade gods not smile upon thee) with a flight enjoy the dulcet music and scents of the WT/WTP lav.
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