Close your eyes and picture yourself in the economy class seat of any airline. It's a 10-hour flight and you're in the middle seat, meaning you'll have to climb over the person next to the aisle if you need to stretch your legs.
Oh wait, the person in front has just reclined their seat (which they're perfectly entitled to do). You're already uncomfortable and the plane hasn't even left the tarmac left.
It's also a cruel experience that the different seating classes are blocked off - or even worse, when passengers have to walk through Business to get to Economy, realising all the beautiful things they won't have.
For those who play by the rules, they know they should stick to their assigned seat and try to find solace in the on-flight entertainment. But we all know those people who sprint faster than Usain Bolt to the back of the plane to call baggsies on an empty row.
However, there is a way to be one step ahead of the game to secure that free row in Economy, or at least an empty seat next to you, barring of course the flight being full.
It's usually when you use those self-serve kiosks at check-in when you get an indication of what seats will be available for your flight. Sure, you could take a picture of the seating chart or memorise where the vacant rows or seats are, but it could all change by the time everyone boards the flight.
Gilbert Ott, who created the site God Save The Points, says the app ExpertFlyer provides a seating chart that is constantly updated - giving you the best knowledge of where you might be able to bag some extra leg room.
In the blog post, Gilbert says: "A smart flyer (which you clearly are) sees the cabin as a game of musical chairs. If the best seat in the house is available immediately - book it.
"If not, get the next best available seat - and set free alerts on ExpertFlyer for any and all the seats you'd prefer. By doing so, you can keep improving up until final boarding.
"Once everyone else has settled their fate, you can often stand in the boarding line with your app open seeing if final seating assignments have created any opportunities - like an entire row to yourself. It really does happen."
Having that up your sleeve might let you get an empty seat next to you, or even better, a whole row to stretch your legs out and worry about something else.
Sources: God Save The Points
Featured Image Credit: PA