Having a good seat can be the difference between stretching your legs and getting some rest, or being cramped for the entire flight, constantly bumped into and next to the toilet.
If you don’t fancy your chances in the airline’s seat lottery, follow these tricks from Seat Guru’s airline seating map tool, to find out the best and worst places to sit on a flight.
British Airways – Airbus A320
This British Airways model is mostly used for short haul European destinations and has 48 seats in the ‘Club Europe’ section and 96 seats in the ‘Euro Traveller’ section. In Club Europe, the best seats are 12A and C-F.
Be wary of 12B however, as there are gaps in the middle and at the sides of this seat when hey are used for economy fares, making them very uncomfortable. It’s best to stay away from all B seats in rows 2-12 to avoid this problem. It is also important to be aware of row 10, whose seats do not decline due to the exit behind.
As it’s a smaller plane, the only seats that have an advantage over others are the whole of row 11 and 12, due to extra legroom. Row 4 is also advised, although avoid 4B. In the Euro Traveller section, be sure to avoid the last seats on the flight – Row 28.
With limited recline and being close to the toilet, these are the worst seats in the house. Be aware of 27C and D too. “Proximity to the toilets may be bothersome”, says Seat Guru.
Conclusion: if you’re in Euro Traveller then avoid any B seats and head to rows 4, 11 or 12. If you’re in Euro Traveller avoid row 28, and the two aisle seats on row 27.
The best and worst airline seats revealed – use this guide when booking your next flight
British Airways – A380-800
British Airway’s A380-800 is used for long haul flights, carrying 303 economy passengers and 55 in economy Plus. The largest of British Airways’ fleet, the A380 has two decks to decipher.
On this aircraft a row is made up of 10 seats, with three seats on the left-hand side, four in the middle and another three on the right-hand side. Anyone travelling on this aircraft should avoid row 42 on the lower deck and row 78 on the upper deck. These are the last rows on the deck, so seats have limited reclining room and are close to the toilets.
Seat Guru advises passengers to be wary of lower deck row 31 and upper row 2-3, as they are close to the galley. This might disrupt passengers due to noise, light and flight attendant activity.
On the lower deck, the best economy seats in the house are on seats B-C and H-J on row 20, as they boast extra leg room. If you’re super lucky you might be sat in seat 25D. A missing seat in front means extra legroom without being the port of call, should the emergency exit door need opening.
Conclusion: avoid the last rows of the section due to limited seat decline and head to 25D: the best economy seat in the house.
Book the best seat and you could end up with plenty of room
Airline flights: The best and worst places to sit on British Airways, Ryanair and easyJet
Ryanair – Boeing 737-800
Ryanair’s standard aircraft, the Boeing 737-800 is separated into ‘Premium’ consisting of 51 seats and ‘Economy’ containing 138 seats. None of the seats throughout the plane recline.
Within the Premium section, rows to watch out for are row 1, only on the left-hand side of the plane and row 2, only on the right-hand side of the plane. Whilst these are premium seats with extra legroom, the close proximity of the galley may be bothersome, Seat Guru reports.
In addition, the tray table is in the armrest which reduces the seat width. On top of that, there is no floor storage for these seats during take-off and landing.
In the ‘Economy’ section, seats to avoid at 11A and 12F due to a missing window. It’s also worth avoiding the whole of row 33, because it lacks an overhead storage compartment and is close to both the toilets and the galley.
The best seats on the plane are next to the emergency exits. Seats 16B-E and 17B-E all have extra legroom, however this is at the expense of no floor storage during take-off an landing.
The second next best seats are 16 and 17A and 16 and 17F because, although both sides boast extra leg room, this seat is missing its window-side arm.
Conclusion: avoid 11A, 12F and the entire row 33, head for rows 16 and 17.
Flying in a cramped seat is a miserable experience, so avoid it by checking your seat first
EasyJet – Airbus A320
If you’re travelling within Europe on an Airbus A320 you can expect 180 seats on board the airplane. The best seats, according to Seat Guru, are all in row 13. Dedicated as an XL seat, this means the lucky six passengers to be sat in row 13 will get extra legroom.
However, these seats are slightly pricier than standard seats, but come with easyJet Speedy Boarding meaning you’ll be one of the first on the plane. Some seats on the flight are subject to mixed reviews. Usually passengers love sitting at the front of the plane: you’re the first on and can usually enjoy extended legroom.
However, Seat Guru reports row 1 has a “bulkhead partition [which] restricts leg movement at this seat”. What’s more, “the tray table is in the armrest, making the armrest immovable and slightly reducing seat width”.
Whilst row 12 enjoys extra legroom, there is limited recline and no under seat storage. They are also priced higher than other
seats, although similarly to row 13, come with Speedy Boarding.
The worst seats are at the back – specifically seats 31 A-C. It’s the worst because, as the last row on the plane, this row is missing a window. It’s also in close proximity to the lavatories which may mean little rest, due to everyone walking past you.
According to Seat Guru “some passengers have reported that the armrest impedes upon and reduces width making [these seats] very uncomfortable”.
Conclusion: avoid row 31 and head for row 13.