New law, parents/kids sitting together

Discussion in 'Disney for Families' started by 2009CAN, Sep 20, 2016.

  1. 2009CAN

    2009CAN Mouseketeer

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    The Families Flying Together Act was passed in July I believe and now airlines must sit children 13 and younger adjacent to parents.
    When we have flown Delta or Spirit in the past, we always have to pay extra money to sit together. So, now that this act has passed, how will it work? Do I need to pay for MY seat and hope the airline doesn't sell the seats next to me?
    Has anyone had experience in this yet?
     
  2. wilkeliza

    wilkeliza DIS Veteran

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    When does the act go into affect? Just because it was passed in July doesn't mean it took affect in July.

    Also if the only seats left when you buy are the more expensive seats then this doesn't apply and you would have to buy 2 of the more expensive seats. It is also possible that if there are no seats next to each other on the flight and your children are 13 or under then you will not see that flight as an available option to you. You still have to buy a ticket for everyone. If seats are chosen by the airline and not you (as in the case with Delta) then you will be put together but won't know were and it may be in an undesired location.
     
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  4. 2009CAN

    2009CAN Mouseketeer

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    I have tickets already for all of us already. I thought it took effect already but will have to look. I just want to make sure the three kids are by me or my husband. The only way I've been able to ensure this in the past was to pay MORE to reserve seats. I want some sort of reassurance that if I do not spend the extra money that my kids will still be sitting by us. I guess I will have to call the airlines.
     
  5. 2009CAN

    2009CAN Mouseketeer

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    Ack! It doesn't go into effect until January. Guess I have to shell out $230 more for our seats :(
     
  6. AussieDisneyMum

    AussieDisneyMum Mouseketeer

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    This was a real shock to us as Aussies the first time we went to the USA on a self-funded Make-A-Wish trip. We did not know that this was not automatically so as it had always been everywhere else we flew in the world, though whether by luck or policy I don't know. It was hugely problematic as the cancer patient was 6 and his machine was hooked into his body via a gastrostomy button and this needed constant monitoring - and he was seated away from family members on some US flights. We would gladly have paid to be seated together had we known.

    The good news is, against all odds and predictions, he pulled through. pixiedust:

    I am glad this is become policy. The horror stories of children assaulted in-flight are harrowing.:guilty:
     
  7. maxiesmom

    maxiesmom The Mean Squinty Eye Works

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    From what I can find it really doesn't do much of anything. You still need to purchase seat assignments if the airline you fly charges for them. You can't for example, book Delta's Basic Economy fare (which doesn't assign seats) and expect them to move people around for you. What it is supposed to help do is not separate your family once you have your seats.

    All that is required by the legislation is for the D.O.T to study the problem and see if they need to put regulations in place.
     
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  8. SkiTeton

    SkiTeton Earning My Ears

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    What kind of ticket are you buying from Delta where they choose your seat? My family has flown Delta for years and we haven't had to pay extra to sit together. This law is a great idea but silly that they would need it in the first place.
     
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  9. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc DIS Veteran

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    I would hope that the onus is on the parents, not the airlines.

    To quote a poster I've sometimes hung in my classroom: "Lack of planning on your part does not constitute an emergency on my part."
     
  10. AussieDisneyMum

    AussieDisneyMum Mouseketeer

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    To clarify, would someone please tell me if there is a disclaimer on the relevant fares/airlines in the USA that passengers sharing a booking may not be seated together? In our situation, we were not warned, but an agent made the booking, so I have no idea if such a disclaimer was made.

    It might help me in future trips to the USA with my own children.
     
  11. maxiesmom

    maxiesmom The Mean Squinty Eye Works

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    If you book on line it will tell you if seats are for purchase, and what will happen if you don't purchase them. Not all airlines are the same.
     
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  12. maxiesmom

    maxiesmom The Mean Squinty Eye Works

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    The act doesn't get you out of paying for seats if the airline charges for them. It states that if you have a child under the age of 13 the airline must notify you if adjoining seats are available at no cost. And if there are not, they have to tell you what their policy is for accommodating adjoining seat requests at check in. It isn't a get out of paying for seat assignments if the airline requires them act.
     
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  13. Gracie09

    Gracie09 DIS Veteran

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    Let's not blow it all out of proportion. There am has been one reported case recently of an unaccompanied minor (not a child sitting away from family) being assaulted. Millions of people fly weekly. Your child has a higher risk of being sexually assaulted at school or church than an airplane.
     
  14. Gracie09

    Gracie09 DIS Veteran

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    Ask the travel agent.
     
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  15. quandrea

    quandrea DIS Veteran

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    I don't see it as lack of planning on a parent's part. I see it as blatant gouging by the airlines. I have a legal responsibility to care for my children. The airlines are despicable in that they exploit that responsibility in order to make money. They don't realistically want parents seated away from young children so they trap you into paying that ridiculous fee. It's disgusting. Instead of laying blame at the feet of the airlines, people turn on one another. Sad really.
     
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  16. Gracie09

    Gracie09 DIS Veteran

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    People pay to choose seats for a variety of reasons some medical, some physical some emotional. If there are no seats we can choose next to our kids we choose a different flight. We don't expect the airline to figure it out. My kids my responsibility. If we have to pay for seat selection we factor that into the total cost like we do luggage fees.
     
  17. quandrea

    quandrea DIS Veteran

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    We will have to disagree. The airlines get away with this type of behaviour because too many people choose to accept this treatment rather than protest. If all families refused to comply, there would be change. That is how change is affected. It's a discriminatory practice.
     
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  18. maranara

    maranara Mouseketeer

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    This is why we fly airlines where you select your seats in advance. I don't want to chance that my family will be spread out over three rows. It's a choice you make - sure, it's cheaper to fly on some of the airlines where they assign your seats, but you're taking a chance. Now, if you choose your seats in advance and show up to find that you've been spread out over the plane, that's a whole different story (as happened to my SIL in April - 4 kids, 4 different rows).
     
  19. Barbara76

    Barbara76 Mouseketeer

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    I see what you are saying, but say you go to book a flight where there aren't enough seats available for your family to sit together, but there are enough available spread across the plane. Do you think that you shouldn't even be shown that flight, or the airline should rearrange everyone else so fit your family? Because that IS a planning problem. If you wait so long to buy tickets that there just aren't enough near each other then why should that flight be available to you? We have paid to sit together before when the kids were younger, now they are 8 and 11 and can handle short flights seated away from us.
     
  20. Gracie09

    Gracie09 DIS Veteran

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    How is it discriminatory? People with children have the same opportunities to select seats as everyone else. My husband is 6'7" we have to pay extra at least for his seat because he does not fit in a regular seat and needs extra leg room. Its not discriminatory because he could choose to sit in a regular seat but his knees would be in his chest and the person in front of him would not be happy. He didn't choose to be his height. People choose to have children. People choose to fly on planes for vacations etc. People choose to purchase the lowest fare even if it it does not meet their needs.
     
  21. Nancyg56

    Nancyg56 DIS Veteran

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    How so? When my DGD was little my DD and DSIL insisted on flying airlines where they knew they could choose the seats. And we paid more at times, but the choice was ours. If you fly Southwest you have the option of paying for earlybird checkin. Again, a little more money but you have the opportunity to choose your seats before the majority of the passengers. Anyone who has a preference may do so. If you choose not to do so, you can choose to be poised at your computer at T minus 24 and still have the opportunity to choose decent seats. Together. I always do that. I am too cheap to pay the earlybird fee.

    If I can fly Delta for a reasonable price I pay for Comfort. My DH is 6'6" and so we pay more for an accommodation.

    The bottom line is that you choose to plan ahead and book what is best for your family, or you pay extra if you wait. I made arrangements for my family, and I expect others to do so for theirs.

    Exactly.

    What treatment? What discrimination? My DD often purchases a second seat. She does not need to in my opinion, but she read one horror story and now has panic attacks thinking she may somehow be turned away at the gate. Keep in mind that it is her family she is sitting with. She happiy turns the set over to anyone who needs it once she boards. She recognizes the issue is hers, and chooses to pay for her own peace of mind.

    I raised my family, and I often travel with kids. I know that the children in my care are my choice. I pay more for hotel rooms. I factor more for shows so the kids can see. I choose airlines and flights carefully. Many people have special concerns that matter to them. If we expected all businesses to absorb those costs, well you can see the issue. You need to plan for your family, and you need to pay your freight. Just like the rest of us who travel.
     

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