Southwest Airlines has a serious problem with people who try to save seats for traveling companions. The seats that they save are the seats that people try to obtain by paying extra fare for early boarding. Today (28 July 2019) two of the eight seats in the exit rows were saved by passengers on flight 5531 from LAX to SMF. My very tall, 21- year-old grandson had paid for early boarding and requires the exit row to be comfortable. After arguing with the woman saving the seat, we directed our grandson to sit in the seat and told her that we had paid the extra fare and were entitled to sit there and that she was ripping us off by saving a seat for her companion. The flight attendant did nothing. After the flight, the seat saver's companion cursed our son-in-law for imvoking the open-seat policy. These sort of altercations spoil the trips of tall passengers who pay for early boarding and are deprived of exit row seats by those who are too cheap to pay for early boarding and try to obtain the same result by collusion. The fact that flight attendants do not enforce the open seat policy shows that Southwest is not concerned with fairness and enforcement of its own rules. These altercations also spoil the trip for those who try to save seats and fail. As a result of not enforcing rules about open seating, the passengers are left to settle their own grievances and all parties involved can develop bad feelings about Southwest Airlines. This problem is occurring with greater frequency on our flights.
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