Q&A: British Airways - Missing middle seat on A320
I am trying to determine which seats to select on an upcoming BA A320 flight from LHR to VIE. I am in a party of 2. On another seating site, seatexpert.com, on the A320 seat map, it says "Also note that the middle seat on the row immediately behind the movable divider is never sold."
Is this true? On my BA.com seat map, the B seat in the first row behind Club Europe is not shown, but the seat on the right of the aisle behind the divider, seat E, is shown as being available. So is seatexpert.com or the BA seat availability map correct, or is there no set arrangement?
I appreciate your help with this matter.
Thanks for getting in touch.
Our own seating map would agree with that shown by BA's online reservation facility, in that the B seat is unavailable where as the E seat is.
BA's official seating map also shows the same thing:
We would suggest you go with BA's online reservation facility as it will show the most accurate availability. Being linked directly into BA's reservation system, it is by far the most reliable source.
Please do let us know how you get on!
I appreciate the prompt response, and will advise as to how things turn out. Can you shed any light as to why BA does this with their seating? Also I have noticed that the first 6 or 7 rows behind Club Europe are shown as occupied until online check-in opens, and then they become available. Is this done to provide BA flexibility while deciding where to put the divider, or some other reason? Once again I appreciate your help with this matter.
We’ve managed to speak to BA regarding this peculiarity, and you are correct, the first rows of economy are unavailable, via the separate seat selection facility, to allow for flexibility according to demand in either cabin. These are only made available when checking-in ie. relatively close to the actual flight time.
It is the same answer with regards to the missing seat B. That seat does of course exist, however BA has chosen to omit it from the seat map (and not seat E) as a way of showing that in some cases those middle seats are kept free in case the business class cabin is extended, but in other cases they can be taken up, we would assume by people checking-in at the airport. Again, this gives BA flexibility. BA is basically covering all eventualities, it’s a rather abstract way of showing it and one that is not immediately obvious.