AN AIRLINE has revealed the tricks that people can use if they want to get a whole row of seats to themselves.
Paying for upgrades is rarely an option for most people, so getting more than one seat to yourself is often the next best thing.
While that isn't always possible, on emptier flights, there are ways in which passengers can put others off wanting to sit next to them.
In a video on Tiktok, American airline Southwest revealed their top tips for making the seats next to you seem like a bad option.
While they admit that the tricks are "discouraged" they suggest they could well be effective.
First, they recommend "the hat trick", which involves using a hat to make it look like the seats next to you are taken.
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By sitting in the window seat and reaching across and balancing a hat on your finger above the aisle seat, from further down the aircraft it can look like there are two people sat in your row.
If there are other seats available elsewhere, people are more likely to sit in those, rather than the one between you and your fake friend.
Second on their list of tips is an encouraging seat pat, which is just outright creepy.
A man called Mike Davis previously showed how to do this in a video on TikTok in which he is seen enthusiastically inviting passengers to join him in his row.
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The idea is that by being overly-keen to sit next to strangers, they will think you're a weirdo and will hopefully stay well away from you.
However, in Mike's video, some people commented saying they would happily take him up on his offer.
One wrote: "You’ll get the most extroverted person alive and they'll talk the entire flight!"
Third on Southwest's list of tips is to just be straightforward and tell people you don't want them sitting next to you.
This will not only get your point across well, it will also make you seem like an unpleasant person too, meaning you won't have to worry about people wanting to make the most of your empty seats.
Lastly, Southwest recommend faking a break up over the phone to make it look like you're going to be an emotional wreck for the whole flight.
Ideally, nobody wants to sit next to a blubbering mess while they're up in the air, so pretending to have a big heart-wrenching break up before take off could put people off wanting to be anywhere near you.
The video has been seen more than 580,000 times, with lots of people thanking the airline for their tips.
One wrote: "Not the content I expected from Southwest, but the content that I needed from Southwest."
Another said: "Flying on Monday! I’ll have to try these out."
A third added: "I’ll be trying them all!"
There are less underhand ways in which you can make sure you end up with a row of seats to yourself.
Gilbert Ott, a travel blogger, has worked out how to win the seat selection game so you always end up with a top-notch economy seat.
Writing for God Save The Points, he explained that the trick to a happy flight is in your pocket – via a handy, free travel app called ExpertFlyer.
The tool can be used to keep track of which seats are free on the plane you're about to board, giving you up-to-the-minute info on who is sat where.
You can set the app up to ping you an alert every time a seat becomes free, letting you swoop in and take advantage of any last-minute changes in the aeroplane seating plan.
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