How To Select Etihad Seats Online

In early 2015 I wrote a tutorial on how to select seats on Etihad when booking through other airlines (like when redeeming American AAdvantage miles for travel on Etihad). While Etihad will allow you to select seats on their website if you booked your ticket directly through them, they don’t allow you to do so if you booked through another airline or frequent flyer program.

For a long time there was a workaround, though, which involved modifying the URL on Etihad’s website. Unfortunately that trick no longer works, though thanks to reader Mitch for pointing out a new workaround for selecting Etihad seats when you booked your ticket through another airline.

Specifically, Etihad allows you to select seats online on partner tickets, but only if you use their mobile website. As before, if you use Etihad’s website and try to select a seat, you’ll get a message saying “we are sorry but this booking cannot be changed online.”

That’s where the mobile website comes in handy. Visit Etihad’s mobile website on your smartphone, and click on “Manage My Booking.”

Then enter your booking reference and last name.

On the next page you’ll have to click “OK” to agree to the terms of using the Etihad site.

Then on the next page you’ll be presented with the itinerary, and then click on “Additional Services” towards the bottom of the page.

There you’ll see the option to select your seats.

Once you select your seats they should be confirmed — it’s that easy!

If you don’t have (or don’t want to use) a smartphone, you can use the mobile version of Etihad’s website on your desktop to select seats instead. So if you have any upcoming reservations on Etihad that are booked through a partner, hopefully you can take advantage of this in order to save a few minutes rather than having to pick up the phone. On the plus side, I find that Etihad’s call center is pretty efficient, and they even have a separate desk for first & business class passengers.


  1. Thank you for this post. Very helpful as just yesterday I had to call to change seats on an award ticket booked with AA miles.

  2. Very nice. Avoids having to hear “Kindly note, this call will end now” and then the stupid questions from the agent “Where are you going?” “What is your class of travel?” I’ve given you the record locator for chrissake!

    Knowing EY, they will soon close this loophole, like they closed the url-mod loophole.

  3. @Katie I am not sure how it helps to tweet. I want to see the seat map when selecting my seat. Sure I can do that through EF first, but that’s an extra step so it’s no longer the ‘easiest way’.

  4. Doesn’t work for me for some reason and I tried different browsers. Trip was booked via AAdvantage miles. The message I see is: “Unable to retrieve your booking
    Please check that your details have been entered correctly or contact us for further assistance.” Anyone else experiencing this?

  5. @EYGuest: as the message says, you have entered your details incorrectly. Specifically, you have entered the AA record locator rather than the EY record locator.

  6. @number1its winter and Lucky is not getting enough sunlight which is causing his solar powered selfs efficiency to drop.

  7. @Chuck Lesker: ah ok, that part wasn’t clear to me, and my confirmation email had only reflected one PNR. But got it figured out now. Very timely post–thanks OMAAT!

  8. Normally don’t post, but thanks a million, just managed to update “auto assigned” seats for my award booking using AA miles on EY.

    Worked like a charm!

  9. Any idea, if there is anyway to get confirmation email, with seat changes?
    I want to tray avoid calling EY customer services which is less than helpful, I like self service!

  10. I used this trick the day this article was published to select new seats for my parents’ AA award in J on the A380. It seemed to work that day, however, I checked again today and it’s now showing their old seats again… Not sure if Etihad already closed this loophole or it never actually worked.

  11. Thanks Lucky! Worked perfectly. I selected 4K per your “Which is the best apartment….” post. Party time!

    Your probably using the AA booking code which wont work on the EY site. You’ve gotta call AA and ask for your EY booking code. Then follow Ben’s steps.

  12. I think this workaround doesn’t work anymore as clicking on “Additional Services” on their mobile website (either on desktop or on phone) now gives an error message saying “We are sorry but this booking cannot be changed online.”

  13. Correction to my earlier comment: It does still work!

    In my case I had just booked the reservation through American Airlines and it had only been 10 minutes when I tried to assign the seat on Etihad’s mobile website. When I called the phone number to assign the seat, they told me that they didn’t have the reservation yet in their system to assign a seat (even though I could see it on their website).

    Anyway, after I waited about two hours, I tried again on the mobile website and followed the steps above and I could in fact choose my seat. Thanks!

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