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IndiGo Airbus A320-232(SL) VT-IFK with Sharklets.
IndiGo Airbus A320-232(WL) VT-IFK with Sharklets. Photo copyright Vedant Agarwal.

IndiGo confusing passengers on ‘Seat Plus Premium Seat’

by Devesh Agarwal

What are the best seats for tall or wide passengers on IndiGo flights? Read on to learn.

Two weeks ago, as I was making a booking on IndiGo for a flight to Delhi, I was offered a chance to buy ‘Premium Seats’ under the airline’s Seat Plus value add-on plan for Rs. 500 per seat per flight. Premium seats include all seats in row 1 (which is against the bulkhead), and rows 12 and 13 (the emergency exit rows), and the windows and aisle seats in rows 2 and 3.

On its website IndiGo advertises these “premium seats” as offering “extra leg room”, reinforced with a graphic. As a frequent traveller, I was fairly certain that this information was inaccurate.

IndiGo’s description of Seat Plus Premium Seating on November 19, 2013.

To the best of my knowledge IndiGo does not offer any additional leg room on rows 2 and 3, since it keeps the same seat pitch of 30 inches for all its rows, with the exception of the two emergency exit rows 12 and 13. But, may be the airline had made some recent changes?

To dispel my doubts I contacted the call centre, and after many holds of “a few minutes” the agent was unable to say one way or the other. Even the airline’s spokespersons were unable to clarify the doubts when I contacted them.

On November 22, when I flew the airline’s newest A320 VT-IFV from Bangalore to Mumbai, I confirmed there is no additional or extra legroom in rows 2 and 3.

Seat plus description page on December 3, 2013

So one must ask why is IndiGo indulging in such practices? Someone at the airline over-zealous to get more value added revenue? One could take it as misleading advertising, and over-selling a feature that does not exist.

On December 3rd, As I web-checked-in for my flight, I decided to look-up the ‘Seat Plus’ information page, again.

Lo and behold, there is no change in the page even though I had pointed out to IndiGo the misleading information on their site two weeks ago.

So this clarification and warning to all the tall people looking for extra leg-room. Stick with rows 12 and 13. Even row 1 may not offer you the leg-room you desire. For the extra wide bodies (XWBs) like me, do not choose rows 12 and 13. IndiGo uses non-standard shorter seat-belts, and cabin crew are prohibited by regulations from giving you an extension seat-belt if you are seated in an emergency exit row.

I invited IndiGo to comment on this story, but there is no response from the airline till the publishing time.

Do you think IndiGo is misleading its customers? Share your thoughts on this via a comment.

About Devesh Agarwal

A electronics and automotive product management, marketing and branding expert, he was awarded a silver medal at the Lockheed Martin innovation competition 2010. He is ranked 6th on Mashable's list of aviation pros on Twitter and in addition to Bangalore Aviation, he has contributed to leading publications like Aviation Week, Conde Nast Traveller India, The Economic Times, and The Mint (a Wall Street Journal content partner). He remains a frequent flier and shares the good, the bad, and the ugly about the Indian aviation industry without fear or favour.

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