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I got EconomyPlus for Free For Being OCD!

I have an upcoming trip on United Airlines (sorry to be cheating on you American Airlines!) Since I don’t have elite status with United and don’t want to give SMI/J any more money than what I paid for the ticket, my advanced seat assignment was ahem, less than desirable:


36C – My original seat that I snagged while booking.

In an effort to score a better seat, and because I’m a bit obsessive-compulsive, I frequently constantly have been checking and re-checking my reservation to see if better seats had become available. It’s as if I hit the refresh button more, occupied seats would become unoccupied.

But my OCD paid off! Today, on my 17th visit to to check my reservation, I noticed something different. The seat map that was displayed now showed rows 20 and 21 as available for me to select. I was so surprised, that I picked my new seat, 21C, without even taking a screenshot. (Shame on me, amateur blogger!)


Old Seat. New Seat. White Seat. Blue (Economy Plus) Seat.

Once I grabbed the exit row seat, I headed over to to see if I made a bad choice and further stress over my seat selection. OCD, see above. When I got to SeatGuru, I learned that United Airlines has multiple seating configurations for their 737-800 aircraft. According to, there are SIX versions of the 737-800 aircraft:


Six different seating arrangements. One type of aircraft.

One thing that I noticed, however, was that my spur-of-the-moment choice, 21C, was an EconomyPlus exit row on all 737-800 versions. PHEW!

What’s more, when looking at what United wants to charge for non-status passengers for this E+ seat, I learned that I saved $54! Take that United!


United wants $54 for this seat. Justin Does…not pay for this!

Let’s hope my free “upgraded” seat assignment sticks come flight time! What do you think, will I get to keep this seat? Have you ever scored a free “upgrade” like this before?

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