I personally prefer the open seating at all times, but most of all when I am travelling with children. Legacy carriers have vacated our seat assignments too many times to count -- equipment changes, schedule changes of less than 5 minutes, the flight being re-numbered -- you name the excuse, I've heard it. They tell me to call every day on the chance that "something might open up", so I waste an enormous amount of time listening to advertisements while on hold, only to get an operator who tells me that no seats are available, and to try again tomorrow. The end result is always separation in scattered middle seats.
With open seating, I check in online, get our A's, and step up to the end of the A line knowing that we will be sure to get contiguous seats. The responsibility rests with me, and takes less of my time than all those fruitless phone calls. I can supervise my own child, and make sure that other passengers are not bothered by his presence.
I understand the issue of getting late-connecting families seated together, but surely there should be a way to know who those connecting passengers are and how many there are? I would suggest using the reserved cards to hold open a bloc of seats at the rear of the aircraft for expected late-connecting passengers.
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