American Airlines Mistakenly Tweets Free Seats for Everyone

Mar 21, 2018

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

A tweet from American Airlines on Tuesday morning sent its nearly two million Twitter followers into a frenzy when the airline (accidentally) offered free seats to passengers. The tweet, which was deleted an hour after it was posted, read, “You never have to pay for a seat. Our team will help you with free seats if you arrive at the airport without.” While some customers might have been throwing clothes in a bag and hauling it to the nearest airport, others on Twitter seemed skeptical of the more-than-generous offer from American. One follower tweeted his apprehension: “Job available: Twitter manager for a national airline. (Our previous manager fired for tweeting drunken nonsense).”

While the tweet had many reactions, the airline clarified that it was simply a response to one of its followers who had a question about seat assignments. The reply “inadvertently left off the Twitter handle of the person who had asked the original question,” a representative for American told Travel + Leisure.

“However, the tweet is true,” the representative added. “Customers are not required to purchase an advanced seat assignment,” in reference to main cabin fares. “Customers may select a free seat, or pay for a preferred or main cabin extra seat. If a free seat is not available, a seat will either be automatically provided at check-in or at the airport.”

It should be noted that American Airlines does offer free seat assignments for passengers who make reservations with select fares; passengers who book in the basic economy cabin must pay extra for seat assignments, however. Basic economy passengers are assigned a seat when they check-in.

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

WELCOME OFFER: 80,000 Points

TPG'S BONUS VALUATION*: $1,650

CARD HIGHLIGHTS: 2X points on all travel and dining, points transferrable to over a dozen travel partners

*Bonus value is an estimated value calculated by TPG and not the card issuer. View our latest valuations here.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,000 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. Plus earn up to $50 in statement credits towards grocery store purchases within your first year of account opening.
  • Earn 2X points on dining including eligible delivery services, takeout and dining out and travel. Plus, earn 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 80,000 points are worth $1,000 toward travel.
  • With Pay Yourself Back℠, your points are worth 25% more during the current offer when you redeem them for statement credits against existing purchases in select, rotating categories.
  • Get unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on eligible orders over $12 for a minimum of one year with DashPass, DoorDash's subscription service. Activate by 12/31/21.
  • Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more.
  • Get up to $60 back on an eligible Peloton Digital or All-Access Membership through 12/31/2021, and get full access to their workout library through the Peloton app, including cardio, running, strength, yoga, and more. Take classes using a phone, tablet, or TV. No fitness equipment is required.
Regular APR
15.99%-22.99% Variable
Annual Fee
$95
Balance Transfer Fee
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Recommended Credit
Excellent/Good

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.