Delta seat map bug or seat map enhancement? Still not sure what we have here.

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delta app seatmap

For those of us who have to still suffer flights on CRJ200s, we should be well aware that Delta blocks seats until 24hrs before flight and will show them as occupied on the Fly Delta APP when we view the seat map.

Now in the old days you could use Expert Flyer and other tools to see the real “load” on the flight and know if there were open seats. After that, one of the best ways is to attempted a Y class booking to see if there are seats remaining (not fool proof). You could also reach out to DeltaAssist.

delta-com seat map with error

Well for the past few days on Delta.com something very interesting is going on. As you can see from my flights to MSP next week for both the dinner with readers on the 22nd as well as my next EAT mileage run the next day, I can see ALL the seats on the jet. Now if I try to pick the blocked seats it tells me to come back at the <24 hour mark.

I very much like this new bit of info. It still will not 100% tell you if the flight is sold out as once nearly full they will sell the seat with seat requested as your “seat” but you are confirmed even if they have to bump someone to get you on-board.

I also am not sure if this change or issue has anything to do with the issue some are reporting to me via e-mail as well as others posting on a FT thread about it. I even reached out to Delta but have not had any update.

Anyway I hope this is not a bug that will go away as I appreciate having MORE not less info about blocked seats being filled with a flyer already or just being held for the day before flight. – René

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10 comments

  1. Ugh!!! I preferred it a semi secret as I could almost always get a better seat.

  2. As I read the message, I interpret it to mean that you can pick these seats 24 hours AFTER you make your booking, not 24 hours before your flight.

    I have received this message many times previously. It happens to me when I book using a 3rd party (typically the travel portal I use for work flights) before the ticket is issued. The reservation will show up on Delta.com but I can not change my seats. Another symptom that my tickets were not issued is that the “Receipt” link is missing on the flight confirmation page. Once the “Receipt” link shows up (Usually after an hour or so, not the full 24 hours), this error has also disappeared and I can select flights.

    I think this is a bug(or at the very least the wrong error message) and unrelated to them holding back some of the seats at the very front of the plane. I also see this happen on non CRJ planes. Then tend to hold a seat or two or three at the very front and I always assumed it was for late ticketed passengers with special needs who should be seated at the front of economy.

  3. @Quinn – I booked this ticket long ago but 24 hr message has been up for a few days now. It is strange.

  4. Here’s another one. I bought a ticket Tue night and even though I was logged in it would not show me the preferred seats on the flight options page. The only place I could see them was after I made the flight selections! Since I’m a measly Gold without advanced access (72 hrs = no access except maybe a middle seat) I look at whigh flight gives me the best seat options. I was also debating between 2 airports. Had to start booking tickets then cancel out to figure out what was best. Really dumb and it didn’t used to be this way. Guess another enhancement.

  5. @Denise- as a fellow Gold I share your pain. When I book now I don’t get to pick seats until after purchase on delta.com. Totally bizarre! Plus now having to pay for C+ or wait til 72 hrs before to get for free? My last flight was MSP-MDW, I was able to get a C+ seat 72 hrs on the departure and return, but imagine my surprise that there was no C+ perks in the return flight! No “better” snacks or comp beer/alcohol yet Delta kept telling me I could get a C+ seat for the return for $19 the day before I flew, so you would have paid for nothing….

  6. Odd, I’m able to pick the formerly blocked seats without the 24 hour error. Also keep in mind that row 6 is still blocked, so there’s another 4 seats that could be empty even if the seat map shows full.

  7. @Quinn—same issue here, only says that when I now use Travel Leaders which is our new travel agency for work and it’s only on CRJ Planes. When we used American Express Axiom to book it never popped up.

  8. Last Monday I was checking my PNR to confirm my seats were the same for a flight on the 24th April. I was also trying to book the same itinerary for my wife. One minute all seats were shown, when I checked again, every seat was shown as OCCUPIED! I tried to book my wife’s itinerary but only a few very terrible seats in the back of a 747 were available. I went back to my rez and saw the same. I called the DM desk and asked for assistance for my wife’s rez. The agent had the same problem I was seeing. After checking with two Supervisors the agent was told that IT had done a “reload” and they were going to get us seats together (C+) which they did when I checked a few minutes later. I wonder if the IT “reload” was the beginning of this “enhancement”?

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