Emirates is the latest airline that is now allowing passengers to ensure that nobody is sitting next to them on either side by allowing you to buy empty seats.
Unfortunately, you cannot book these seats in advance, but they are only available at the airport check-in at the price of $55 to $165 per seat per segment. You may also want to inquire if they offer buy-ups to business (more space and better service).
You can access Emirates here.
Here’s the announcement from Emirates:
Emirates’ Economy Class customers can now enjoy even more personal space and privacy onboard with the ability to purchase up to three empty adjoining seats on their flight.
These seats will be offered to all Economy Class customers holding a confirmed booking. Customers will not be able to pre-book empty seats, as these are subject to availability. Empty seats will only be offered for purchase at the airport check-in counter prior to flight departure, and costs range from AED 200 to AED 600 (US$ 55 to US$ 165) per empty seat, plus applicable taxes depending on flight sector.
Emirates has introduced this new seat product on the back of customer feedback, addressing the needs of a range of customers seeking extra privacy and space while still flying in Economy Class. This includes couples who wish to have the entire row to themselves (maximum of three seats in same row), parents travelling with in-lap infants, or those who simply want the added assurance of more space while travelling during pandemic times.
In addition to the new empty seats option, Emirates currently offers a variety of seat products for Economy Class customers to choose their favourite seat based on their travel needs:
- Extra legroom seats: exit row seats offering additional space but subject to safety requirements;
- Twin seats: seats in a row of two at the back of Emirates’ Boeing 777 aircraft, and on the upper deck of Emirates’ 2-class Airbus A380 aircraft;
- Preferred seats: seats in the first section of the cabin and on the upper deck of a two-class A380;
- Regular seats: all other Economy seats.
These seats, available via Emirates.com, Emirates contact centres, at airport check-in, onboard, and through travel agent partners, are offered for free or at a charge, depending on the customer’s Emirates Skywards membership tier, fare type, time to departure, and other special needs. Visit our page on emirates.com for more information.
Emirates has also introduced generous discounts on excess baggage rates, to help customers flying on essential trips take home what they need most.
These discounts range from 35% up to 60% off normal rates depending on sector and must be pre-booked and pre-paid up to 4 hours prior to flight departure via emirates.com, through contact centres or at an Emirates sales office. Visit our page on emirates.com for more information.
Emirates tries to get some cash for seats that would otherwise go empty. Paying for them in advance at the airport ensures that you have them for the flights’ duration.
It is not an issue with empty flights to get plenty of seats for yourself without paying any. It may make sense to check the flight loads before paying extra for adjacent seats.
And also, ask for a price for a business class upgrade. They may run specials on the route that you fly.