My opinion is that the recent EBCI fee increase will only cause groups that are traveling together to purchase a single EBCI. This single EBCI will then board and save the appropriate number of seats since SW allows for such a practice. Even if a couple is traveling together by purchasing a single EBCI would save a fair amount. I don't like the practice of saving seats but on my last flight I was inconvenienced by SW "no policy on seat saving" so I will take advantage of it on future flights and save at least $50.00.
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Linsey...Your response is essentially a no response as you don't address the issue being discussed. The issue isn't getting the exact seat that one wants but is the fact that SW charges an EB fee and has an "Open seating" policy. Yet when travelers circumvents the Open seating policy by paying for a single EB and having that person save seats for traveling companions who have not paid the EB fee thus preventing other customers not to have their choice of an open seat. I experienced this situation on my most recent flight where I paid for EB for myself and spouse. When I boarded there were two empty seats in a particular row but when I went to sit in one of the seats, I was told by a traveler in the 3rd seat that one of the seats was being saved. I said that there is open seating and saving is not allowed. A nearby flight attendant then interjected that that was not true. When I asked the flight attendant for an explanation, she said that the company doesn't have a policy against saving seats and if I didn't like that I could contact corporate headquarters. Please respond to the question "Does SW permit the saving of seats?" If the answer is "Yes" then I will only purchase a single EB on future flights and save the seats that I need for my traveling companions. Why pay extra when I don't have to!! I will also make this well-known through the various social media platforms so that other customers can play the same game. Needless to say, SW's condoning the saving of seats will have an impact on its income from EB fees as others may follow suite and pay for a single EB as opposed to numerous. In closing I would like to state this is a bigger problem than SW may believe it is and will negatively reflect in passenger satisfaction and choice of SW as a carrier. Other similar carriers offer a "choice seating" fee which would be a viable alternative to SW and its EB fees.
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