Booked a Delta flight where husband and I are not sitting together. I ended up with a preferred seat 26A on a MD-90 plane. No seat in front of me- by window. I would rather sit with husband. Could I resell this seat once on board to someone closer to my husband. Or is this in bad taste?

  • 27
    Think of it this way: you're the one who wants to switch seats. Why should the other person pay you anything? You don't really want money; you want to sit next to your wife. What seat you're in shouldn't really matter in this case, I think.
    – user428517
    Mar 22, 2017 at 22:45
  • 15
    Not only is it in bad taste, it is likely breach of contract and you can and likely will be kicked off the plane for doing that, the same way you will be if you sell your frequent flyer miles or your seat on a flight you bought and can no longer fly. Call the airline and they'll show you the pertinent fine print. Mar 22, 2017 at 23:27
  • 5
    Will you be accepting visa? Mar 23, 2017 at 12:24
  • Anecdotally, it is in bad taste. Kindly ask the other person if they would like your seat in exchange.
    – Mikey
    Mar 23, 2017 at 12:26
  • Important missing information: a) did you get adjacent seat assignments when you booked? b) did you book via the airline directly, or a third-party? what do their TOS or CoC say? c) did you and your husband make separate bookings? via separate services? sounds like you did
    – smci
    Mar 23, 2017 at 15:22

3 Answers 3


The typical and widely expected scenario would be you offering your 'better' seat to the person sitting next to your husband as an enticement to switch.

You would essentially be paying them with the better seat.

  • 35
    And it doesn't even necessarily have to be a better seat. Plenty of people will agree to swap if they're travelling alone and you want to be with family even if your seat is no better than theirs. Mar 22, 2017 at 21:06
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    Yep, most people will do an even exchange. But a Preferred seat is an obvious premium.
    – DTRT
    Mar 22, 2017 at 21:24
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    @Johns-305: That depends. If a Preferred seat is categorized as such because of additional leg space, and if that leg space goes along with inability to store the cabin luggage under the seat in front (emergency exit row, or no seat in front (as indicated by the OP)), the so-called Preferred seat is rather a disadvantage than a premium in my view. Mar 23, 2017 at 9:45
  • @O.R.Mapper any time I've sat in such a preferred seat, there has always been an option to store the same amount of luggage; usually it's in the form of being able to put both your personal item and carryon in the overhead bins... though if your "personal item" is small enough (e.g. a reasonably-sized purse) they'll often just let you hold it in your lap.
    – Doktor J
    Mar 23, 2017 at 14:50
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    @DoktorJ: Having to put my stuff in the overhead bin (where i cannot access it without getting up, where it might get mixed with or buried under other passengers' belongings, and where I could easily forget it) is precisely the disadvantageous aspect I strive to avoid. I am referring to backpacks of a size that will just about fit underneath the seat in front and almost completely occupy that space. Mar 23, 2017 at 15:17

This would, indeed, be in bad taste. I'm not sure there's a specific rule for the situation, but airlines generally frown upon soliciting their passengers, and they view seats as something they assign and do not guarantee, not property to be sold.

It is, however, not uncommon to offer to switch seats with someone in order to allow families to sit together, without any money changing hands. You could approach someone sitting by your husband and offer him your seat, explaining that it comes with extra legroom. He may take you up on the offer, but might have particular reasons to prefer his current seat (it might be next to his family).

There is an app called Seateroo that's intended to create an online marketplace for seat selling. I've never used it, find it pretty ridiculous, and would imagine that the odds of finding someone else who is sitting near your husband and wants to buy your seat on your particular flight is pretty darn low, but it does exist.


At many airlines, you can change your seat during the online check-in. Try this first to change your seat or to upgrade the seat of your husband if there is a free seat next to you.

Otherwise come early to the check-in and as the check-in agent if it is possible to swap the seat.

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