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How to use ExpertFlyer alerts to snag a better seat

How to use ExpertFlyer alerts to snag a better seat

Editor’s note: This is a recurring post, regularly updated with the latest information.

We get it. Airline seat selection can be a frustrating endeavor. Window or aisle? Preferred seat or standard seat? Over the wing or not? Should I not select a seat and hope to score a unconfined one at check-in?

Sometimes, your platonic seat may not be misogynist when you book. And who has time to manually trammels a seat map multiple times a day leading up to a flight in the hopes that a largest one opens up?

Fortunately, ExpertFlyer (owned by TPG’s parent company, Red Ventures) can do this automatically. Best of all, you can set an zestful for a window or walkway seat with ExpertFlyer’s self-ruling membership. In this guide, we’ll take you through exactly how to set up and use ExpertFlyer seat alerts.

What is ExpertFlyer?

American Airlines first matriculation seats A321neo

ExpertFlyer is self-ruling for anyone to join, but it moreover includes two paid membership tiers that unlock expanded features and functionality. You can sign up for a free five-day Premium trial on the ExpertFlyer website if you’re a new member. Here are the three membership levels:

  • Free: Set an zestful to notify you when a increasingly desirable seat opens up on your flight. You’re limited to one self-ruling zestful at a time, though you can add increasingly for $0.99 each.
  • Basic ($4.99 per month): Offers spare features, such as ribbon and upgrade inventory search and flight availability. You can set four seat alerts simultaneously, but you’re limited to 250 queries per month.
  • Premium ($9.99 per month, or $99.99 per year): Includes flexible search options, unlimited queries and the worthiness to create watercraft transpiration and flight alerts. You can have up to 200 combined flight and seat alerts simultaneously.

For increasingly information on ExpertFlyer, trammels out our guide to finding ribbon space with ExpertFlyer. The remainder of this guide will focus solely on ExperFlyer seat alerts.

Related: Tips for picking the perfect airplane seat every time

How to set an ExpertFlyer seat alert

Young Asian woman shopping online for flight ticket on airline website with palmtop at home, sitting next to suitcase with sun hat, camera, clothings, headphones, smartphone and passport. Getting ready for vacation. Travel and vacation concept

Once you’ve signed up for ExpertFlyer, you can set a seat zestful plane if you opt for the self-ruling membership tier. Surpassing you go to ExpertFlyer to set a seat alert, gather your flight information. Specifically, you’ll need the pursuit information well-nigh your flight:

  • Departure airport
  • Arrival airport
  • Date
  • Airline name or International Air Transport Association code
  • Flight number
  • Class of service

Once you have this information, log in to your worth and click “Create new seat alert” from the homepage.

Using ExpertFlyer

Next, enter your flight details and click “Search.”

SJC to HNL AS ExpertFlyer

Now, click “Create seat alert.” Name your zestful and select your criteria on the right surpassing clicking “Create.” Note that if you are on a self-ruling ExpertFlyer membership and are using your self-ruling alert, you’ll only be worldly-wise to set up an zestful for any seat, any walkway seat or any window seat. In this case, I’ve set the zestful to teach me well-nigh walkway and window bulkhead seats.

SJC to HNL AS seat map ExpertFlyer

Once you create an alert, ExpertFlyer will notify you via email if your desired seats wilt available.

Related: Are airlines required to seat families together? Guide to airline family seating policies

When to set a seat alert

AA E170 Main Cabin Bad Seat

There are a handful of times when you may find yourself in need of a largest seat, including the pursuit scenarios:

  • Your preferred seat type (aisle or window) isn’t available.
  • You’re stuck in a middle seat and prefer a window or walkway seat.
  • You can’t find seats together for you and your spouse/friend(s)/family member(s).
  • You’d prefer a seat in a variegated part of the plane (like closer to the front for ease of deplaning or closer to the when for restroom proximity).
  • You want a specific seat, such as an exit-row seat or a seat in a two-seat row.

In any of these cases, the ExpertFlyer seat alerts full-length can help get you out of your existing seat and into a largest one.

Related: Apps and websites that make ribbon redemptions easier

Using ExpertFlyer seat alerts

Now, let’s consider how to use ExpertFlyer seat alerts.

Let’s say you are flying American Airlines flight 185 from John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) to Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) on Nov. 26, 2023 — a flight roughly five weeks yonder when we last updated this guide. Given the flight’s length, you’d like to stave sitting in a middle seat. Unfortunately, there are no increasingly standard window or walkway seats left — only paid ones.

AA 185 seat map

To set up an alert, log in to your ExpertFlyer worth and click “Create new seat alert” from the homepage. Enter the search criteria for your flight:

  • Departure airport name or code: JFK
  • Arrival airport name or code: LAX
  • Date: Nov. 26, 2023
  • Airline name or code: American Airlines (AA)
  • Flight number: 185
  • Class of service: Economy

The site will then pull up the whilom seat map, and you can select specific seats. In this case, I ticked off all the complimentary walkway and window seats except for the plane’s last row.

AA 185 ExpertFlyer seat alert

Once you’ve widow these details, click “Create.” You’ll get an firsthand notification that your zestful was successfully created.

Finish seat zestful page

You’ll receive an email notification once ExpertFlyer locates a seat that matches your zestful criteria. At that point, it’s up to you to wangle your reservation directly with the operating airline and select the seat. Do so immediately, expressly if your flight departs within 24 to 48 hours. Open seats tend to get snapped up quickly, so vicarial quickly when you get an zestful will maximize your chances of moving to a largest seat.

Related: Should you ask to switch seats on a plane?

Bottom line

ExpertFlyer can have a ton of utility for wide flyers, as you can set alerts for awards and upgrades on dozens of airlines with a paid Premium membership. However, it’s moreover a fantastic tool for unstudied travelers, thanks to the seat zestful full-length misogynist plane to users with a self-ruling membership.

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