EasyJet to introduce allocated seating on all flights

Allocated seating is to be introduced on all EasyJet flights from November after a trial period this summer.

Passengers will be allocated a seat for free. But those wanting to guarantee where they will be sitting will be charged.

Three bands of pricing, dependent on the seat selected, will be imposed:

•                       £12 for extra leg room (front row and exit rows)
•                       £8 for up front seats (row 2-5 on A319 or 2-6 on A320)
•                       £3 for any other seat

EasyJet said: “Passengers who do not wish to pay to select their seat will be allocated a seat free of charge.

“Passengers travelling on the same booking will be seated together wherever possible by the airline’s reservation system which uses the most advanced seating algorithm in world aviation.”

Research among 800,000 passengers on 6,000 trail flights found that more than 70% thought allocated seating was better than the budget airline’s ‘first come, first served’ system, due to the improved boarding experience.

More than 60% said they are more likely to use EasyJet in the future as a result, the airline said.

“The key tests of the trial were to improve passenger satisfaction without impacting EasyJet’s ability to deliver industry leading punctuality or adding cost – all of which were achieved on trial flights,” the carrier added.

Chief executive Carolyn McCall said: “Our customers asked us to trial allocated seating and we are really pleased with the positive passenger feedback during the trial.

“As importantly, we have shown that we can do so while delivering strong on time 
performance – the most important driver of passenger satisfaction.

“Allocated seating gives all our passengers a better boarding experience and offers the choice of selecting a seat to those who want to.

“On trial flights the majority of passengers were simply allocated seats when they checked in.

“Some passengers chose particular seats with bestselling seats usually those near the front, for those who wish to get off the aircraft quickly at their destinations, and exit row seats with their extra legroom.”

She added: “We are confident this move will make our current passengers happier when flying with EasyJet and will attract new passengers to fly with us in future.”

Phased introduction starts on November 13 from Gatwick South Terminal, Luton, Stansted, Southend, Bristol and Glasgow.

This will be followed on Novemver 20 by Gatwick North Terminal, Milan, Rome and Paris Charles de Gaulle and November 27 by Belfast, Edinburgh, Liverpool, Manchester, Newcastle, Basel, Geneva, Lyon, Nice, Toulouse, Paris Orly, Madrid, Lisbon and Berlin.

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