Travel expert shares booking tip to get a row of seats to yourself on a plane


Chelsea Dickenson, who shares travel advice on Cheapholidayexpert.com, has devised two strategies to increase your chances of bagging a row of seats to yourself on a flight

An empty row of plane seats
An empty row of seats on a plane is what we all dream of

It’s always a pain to feel squashed in your seat on a plane – especially if it’s a long haul flight.

But a travel expert has now shared her two best tips to increase your chances of avoiding an uncomfortable situation by bagging an entire row of seats to yourself.

Chelsea Dickenson, who shares brilliant travel advice on Cheapholidayexpert.com, says the first hack is for people travelling as a pair to avoid the temptation of simply booking your seats beside one another.

Instead, find an empty row and book the window and aisle seat, as Chelsea says “solo travellers are much less likely to select a seat in between two strangers” and increases your chances of getting extra room.








Chelsea tried the hacks recently on a flight to Corfu
(

Image:

https://www.instagram.com/cheapholidayexp/)










It worked and no stranger came to sit on her row
(

Image:

https://www.instagram.com/cheapholidayexp/)



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This does, of course, rely on the plane not being fully booked, but even in the worst-case scenario that someone does come to claim the seat between you, chances are they will be more than happy to exchange the middle seat for an aisle or window and you can sit next to each other as originally planned.

Chelsea and her partner recently tried the method on a flight from London to Corfu, and uploaded a video on Instagram to show it worked perfectly as they bagged a row to themselves.

She says you can adapt the hack if you’re travelling alone by booking out the middle seat and hoping other passengers avoid those either side of you, warning that although it is a very high risk strategy, “you’ve gotta be in it to win it”.




The second tip involves playing on the superstitions of the people you’re sharing a flight with, by booking into row 13 in the hope that others who view the number as unlucky will avoid it.

Chelsea revealed on her website that some airlines don’t even have a row 13 for this reason, and added one last piece of advice, writing: “People tend to want to book closer to the front of the plane so choosing towards the back may increase your chances further – but it’s all about how the specific airline allocates their seats (they’re all different I’m afraid!).”

On her flight to Corfu, Chelsea combined both methods by booking the window and aisle seats on row 13 and found no stranger came to share their row.

Do you have any travel hacks of your own? Let us know in the comments.





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Travel Expert Shares Booking Tip To Get A Row Of Seats To Yourself On A Plane


It’s always a pain to feel squashed in your seat on a plane – especially if it’s a long haul flight.

But a travel expert has now shared her two best tips to increase your chances of avoiding an uncomfortable situation by bagging an entire row of seats to yourself.

Chelsea Dickenson, who shares brilliant travel advice on Cheapholidayexpert.com, says the first hack is for people travelling as a pair to avoid the temptation of simply booking your seats beside one another.

Instead, find an empty row and book the window and aisle seat, as Chelsea says “solo travellers are much less likely to select a seat in between two strangers” and increases your chances of getting extra room.



Chelsea tried the hacks recently on a flight to Corfu
(

Image:

https://www.instagram.com/cheapholidayexp/)


It worked and no stranger came to sit on her row
(

Image:

https://www.instagram.com/cheapholidayexp/)


Get the news you want straight to your inbox. Sign up for a Mirror newsletter here.

This does, of course, rely on the plane not being fully booked, but even in the worst-case scenario that someone does come to claim the seat between you, chances are they will be more than happy to exchange the middle seat for an aisle or window and you can sit next to each other as originally planned.

Chelsea and her partner recently tried the method on a flight from London to Corfu, and uploaded a video on Instagram to show it worked perfectly as they bagged a row to themselves.

She says you can adapt the hack if you’re travelling alone by booking out the middle seat and hoping other passengers avoid those either side of you, warning that although it is a very high risk strategy, “you’ve gotta be in it to win it”.

The second tip involves playing on the superstitions of the people you’re sharing a flight with, by booking into row 13 in the hope that others who view the number as unlucky will avoid it.

Chelsea revealed on her website that some airlines don’t even have a row 13 for this reason, and added one last piece of advice, writing: “People tend to want to book closer to the front of the plane so choosing towards the back may increase your chances further – but it’s all about how the specific airline allocates their seats (they’re all different I’m afraid!).”

On her flight to Corfu, Chelsea combined both methods by booking the window and aisle seats on row 13 and found no stranger came to share their row.

Do you have any travel hacks of your own? Let us know in the comments.





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COVID-19: France travel row isn’t just about an island ‘thousands of miles away, says Grant Shapps | UK News


Grant Shapps has defended France’s position on the UK’s ‘amber plus’ travel list, saying the decision was made due to cases of the Beta coronavirus variant in the north of the country.

On Wednesday, Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said the move was made because of the “prevalence of the so-called Beta variant, in particular in the Reunion bit of France“.

Reunion, a French island in the Indian Ocean, is 6,000 miles from Paris.

But the transport secretary told Kay Burley the variant is also “an issue” in northern parts of the country.

“The Beta variant, it is not just – as has been reported – on an island thousands of miles away, it was also an issue in particular in northern France. So it has been an overall concern,” Grant Shapps told Sky News.

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‘Good idea’ to get two jabs before returning to office – Shapps

“And look, the big concern is that we don’t allow a variant in which somehow is able to escape the vaccine programme that we have got.

“We don’t want to have got this far with vaccinations, with just getting towards 90% of all adults having been vaccinated, and then throw it all away because a variant that the vaccine perhaps couldn’t handle came in.

“Now all the evidence on all of that has been pulled together – the latest research on how the vaccine works with the Beta variant, the scale of the Beta variant and France and the rest of it – and then these decisions will, of course, be constantly reviewed which is exactly what will happen.”

Airfrance plane.
Image:
French minister Clement Beaune said the UK government should use ‘common sense’ and review the matter ‘as quickly as possible’

It comes after a French minister described the UK government’s decision to keep quarantine measures for travellers coming from France while removing them for all other European countries as “discriminatory” and “excessive”.

Earlier this week, Mr Shapps confirmed England would allow fully vaccinated visitors from both the EU and the United States to arrive without needing to quarantine from 2 August.

But he added that tougher rules will continue to be in place for France, which, although on the amber list, still requires travellers to quarantine on their return regardless of their vaccine status.

Mr Shapps said this advice would be reviewed at “the end of next week” as part of an ongoing assessment of travel rules.

But France’s Europe minister Clement Beaune described the move as “incomprehensible on health grounds” and accused the UK government of making decisions “not based on science”.

Mr Beaune said the UK government should use “common sense” and review the matter “as quickly as possible”.

Pic: AP
Image:
Grant Shapps said the situation with France and other countries will be kept under review

He added that the French government are not planning to place any increased measures on British citizens “for now”.

When Mr Beaune’s comments were put to him on Sky News, Mr Shapps said he understood the disappointment but disagreed with the French minister’s claim that the UK government are not following the science with decision making.

“It is always disappointing for any country to be anything other than on our green list, I appreciate that,” the transport secretary said.

“I spoke to my opposite number Jean-Baptiste just yesterday and we agree we’ll always follow the science on these things and make sure as we can be satisfied over whichever the variants are and whatever the prevalence is that the Joint Biosecurity Centre recommendations to us are followed.”

Mr Shapps added that he is “looking forward to the whole world being more accessible”.

But Labour said government ministers “appear to be tying themselves in knots” trying to explain their decision to put France in the amber-plus travel category.

Passengers arrive at the Eurostar terminal at Gare du Nord train station
Image:
Labour say the government must publish the data which explains why France is not included in its isolation exemption policy

Shadow transport secretary Jim McMahon said: “If they misinterpreted the data over cases in mainland France they need to come clean and apologise.

“It’s completely unfair that holidaymakers who booked in good faith in line with the government’s own advice, have had to fork out extra for early flights, or lost income through having to isolate when they came home.

“This is why Labour has been calling for the country-by-country data informing the traffic light system to be published. The government must do that without delay.”

Currently, only people who received two vaccine doses in the UK can avoid quarantine when arriving from amber list countries.

The UK government said the rule change would help to reunite family and friends whose loved ones live abroad.

But this rule also does not apply to France.



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Make it three in a row: Instead of tanking, Wolves are streaking


The Timberwolves could have taken the easy way out Tuesday in Houston. They could have rested any number of their top players, such as Karl-Anthony Towns, D’Angelo Russell and Anthony Edwards.

The Wolves were playing on a back-to-back with travel, and perhaps they could have used that as an excuse to rest players, a process some refer to as “tanking,” in order to improve their draft lottery odds.

All currently healthy Wolves outside of Malik Beasley were available to play. No one rested as the Wolves beat Houston 114-107.

As coach Chris Finch made clear before the game, the Wolves have been too injured and need to figure out what they have around Towns and Russell more than they need a few extra percentage points to keep their pick in the top three of the lottery or else surrender it to Golden State.

“We told the team and certainly our core, key guys that we weren’t going to go into the stretch run here with the mentality of resting anybody unnecessarily because we’re trying to establish chemistry, establish identity, establish a rhythm,” Finch said. “Take into the offseason a body of work that we can really assess and that’s more important than anything else for us right now.”

If anyone was worried the Wolves would suddenly morph into one of the best teams in the NBA after beating Utah twice, the Wolves alleviated those fears with an inconsistent game despite the win, which gave them their first three-game winning streak of the season. Finch wasn’t complaining about that.

“Tough run of games here, we could’ve easily had a schedule loss here,” Finch said. “But I was proud of the way we found a way to win.”

The Wolves, who won their 999th game as a franchise, overcame a five-point fourth-quarter deficit and won without Towns available for the final 2 minutes, 21 seconds after he fouled out. The score was tied 102-102 at the time and the Wolves would score the next eight points.

Jarred Vanderbilt was the key player in that stretch. He came up with a tip-in, a steal that led to a D’Angelo Russell bucket, a dunk and another steal to seal the game. He finished with eight points, seven rebounds and three steals.

BOXSCORE: Wolves 114, Houston 107

“The process is right,” Vanderbilt said. “I like the direction this team is going in, going out there and we’re competing every night. We’re gaining chemistry. Even though we’re not in playoff contention this year, it’s bigger than that. We’re fighting for next year.”

That’s been the organizational mantra the second half of the season, lottery pingpong balls be darned. Along those lines, the Wolves improved to 9-6 when Towns and Russell share the floor. The Wolves wanted to see what they looked like with both players healthy, and now they’re finally getting a glimpse.

“We haven’t played all of us together in a long time, and I think we’re just jelling right now,” said Juancho Hernangomez, who had 22 points off the bench.

Towns had 31 points, seven rebounds and five assists and led the Wolves back from an 85-82 deficit with an 8-0 run. He helped them push it to 98-89 before Houston made one last run, a 9-0 spurt that tied the score before Towns fouled out.

On another day, the Wolves might have folded and helped out those lottery odds. They hope they’ve put those days behind them.

• After the game, Towns, Edwards and Josh Okogie met with some of George Floyd’s family members, the team said. They presented the Floyds with a game ball they dedicated to Floyd after a recent win over Sacramento along with a Wolves Floyd jersey.

The Star Tribune did not travel for this game. This article was written using the television broadcast and video interviews before and/or after the game.

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Dudley residents told they can’t use Sandwell tip as Black Country waste row continues


The Shidas Lane tip in Oldbury is for use by Sandwell residents only
The Shidas Lane tip in Oldbury is for use by Sandwell residents only

Until last week, people with a DY postcode had been able to dispose of their waste at Dudley Council’s Stourbridge tip and at Wolverhampton Council’s Bilston tip.

However an agreement between the two authorities has ended after the Wolverhampton authority asked Dudley Council to increase the fee it pays for access to the Bilston centre by 65 per cent.

Bosses at Dudley Council said they were close to signing a deal for use of the Shidas Lane tip in Oldbury, however Sandwell Council has now said the facility will remain for Sandwell residents only.

A spokesman for the authority said: “We’re unable to open up our facilities for use by people from outside the borough.

“We only have one recycling centre in Sandwell, and we need to ensure that it is available for Sandwell residents to use.”

A war of words broke out between the leaders of Labour-led Wolverhampton Council and Conservative-led Dudley council after the deal between the two authorities broke down.

Wolverhampton Council had asked Dudley Council to pay around £133,000 more than the £200,000-a-year it had been paying for access since 2008-09.

Wolverhampton Council defended the increase, saying it was only right that Dudley paid its fair share of the £1m-a-year running costs given that 32 per cent of visitors are from Dudley.

However Dudley Council leader Patrick Harley described the proposed increase as “an utter disgrace” and accused Wolverhampton Council of “back of a fag packet accounting”.

Wolverhampton Council leader Ian Brookfield questioned why Wolverhampton should “pick up Dudley’s bill”, adding: “We are more than happy if Dudley Council wants to come back to the table and pay their fair share.”

With all DY residents now needing to travel to Stourbridge, the opening hours of the household waste recycling site just off the A458 have been extended until 6pm on weekdays to cope with the extra demand.



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Tip row as Dudley residents told they cannot use Sandwell facility


Dudley residents have been told they are not allowed to use Sandwell’s recycling centre in an ongoing row over tips in the Black Country.

Dudley Council had hoped to sign a deal for use of the Shidas Lane tip in Oldbury after walking away from a long-standing agreement with City of Wolverhampton Council.

The only tip Dudley residents can currently use is one in Stourbridge.

The Labour-run city council had attempted to renegotiate a £200,000-a-year deal for use of its facility in Anchor Lane, Bilston, by asking Conservative-run Dudley Council to pay around £133,000 a year more.

Dudley Council had previously paid £200,000 towards the upkeep of the site, which costs more than £1 million a year to run – but after it was established that its residents accounted for at least 32 per cent of visitors to the site, it was asked to raise its contribution to £333,000.

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The council refused to pay the increased fee and said it was left with “no alternative but to end the agreement” as of April 1.

Opening hours at the Stourbridge tip were increased to allow an extra 1,000 cars into the site per week and Sandwell Council was approached to see if it would allow residents use of its facility.

But those hopes were dashed when the council announced it would not be letting those from outside the borough use the site.

A Sandwell Council spokesman said: “We’re unable to open up our facilities for use by people from outside the borough.

“We only have one recycling centre in Sandwell, and we need to ensure that it is available for Sandwell residents to use.”

Dudley Council has been approached for comment.





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