Ryanair and easyJet take reserved seating to low-cost battleground

Ryanair and easyJet are going head-to-head on the new battleground of paid-for allocated seating, as they seek to ramp up passenger numbers.

Ryanair: extends its allocated seating service
Ryanair: extends its allocated seating service

Ryanair is to extend its allocated seating service across all of its routes from January 2012.

Passengers will be able to reserve a seat in the first two rows of the aircraft for €10 per flight. The move follows a successful trial of the service earlier this year.

Ryanair's announcement comes a week after rival budget airline easyJet said it was trialling allocated seating throughout its cabins, where passengers will be able to reserve specific seats.

EasyJet said that its prices for allocated seating would "stay true to easyJet's commitments to low fares".

Both airlines operate a priority boarding service, which means for an extra charge, passengers can get first choice on seats.

Last week, Marketing reported that  Ryanair chief executive Michael O'Leary and easyJet chief executive Carolyn McCall joined forces to lobby the Government on Air Passenger Duty (APD).

The two budget airlines grouped together with Virgin Atlantic and International Airlines Group (IAG) to sign a letter to chancellor George Osborne urging him to scrap the tax.

Follow Loulla-Mae Eleftheriou-Smith on Twitter @LoullaMae_ES