Qantas to Expand 'Neighbor-free' Seating to These U.S. Flights

Qantas is expanding its "neighbor-free" seating option, allowing travelers across the world to guarantee an open seat next to them, on U.S. flights.

<p>Courtesy of Qantas Airways Limited</p>

Courtesy of Qantas Airways Limited

Qantas is expanding its neighbor-free seating option, allowing travelers across the world to guarantee an open seat next to them.

The Australian airline will bring the free-seat program to 19 different international routes, including in the United States, Qantas shared with Travel + Leisure. Travelers who want a bit more room will now be able to pay as little as $143 to guarantee no one sits next to them on flights between the U.S. and Australia.

In the U.S., the program will be available on the following flights:

  • Between Dallas and Melbourne

  • Between Dallas and Sydney

  • Between Honolulu and Sydney

  • Between Los Angeles and Brisbane

  • Between Los Angeles and Melbourne

  • Between Los Angeles and Sydney

  • Between San Francisco and Sydney

Qantas first introduced the “Neighbor Free Seating” option on domestic flights in September as a trial program. It is now available on the majority of the airline’s domestic network.

“We’ve had a really positive reaction from customers who’ve opted to travel Neighbor Free on our domestic network and customers have told us they want the option on our international flights too,” Catriona Larritt, Qantas’ chief customer and digital officer, said in a statement provided to T+L. “Whether they’re hopping across the Tasman or taking a longer flight to the United States, we think customers will value being able to secure some extra space.”

The program will only be available on flights that aren’t full and customers will be emailed 48 hours before their flight departure with the option to book an extra seat. However, there’s a catch: the free seat is not guaranteed until departure so if that seat is sold, customers would receive a refund. 

Travelers who purchase options like extra legroom or who have requested an upgrade will not be eligible to choose a neighbor-free seat. Travelers with an infant or those in a group booking will also not be eligible for the program.

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