A FORMER flight attendant has revealed how you can sit with your friends and family without paying for your plane seat.

Many budget airlines such as Ryanair and easyJet charge passengers to select their seat.

However, ex-flight attendant Jane Hawkes explained why you should never pay for them – and just ask to swap seats on the plane.

She told Express: "Just wait to get onboard and then say ‘we’re travelling together and we didn’t realise we’d be separated’.

“You could just ask other passengers around you who can be very accommodating.

“It’s worth asking but there’s not much point asking before you get onboard.”

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She said it wasn't advised for families travelling with kids, as it ran the risk of not sitting together if no-one wants to swap.

However, it was a good tactic if travelling with a partner or friends to "never pay" to book seats together.

But the advice comes with some caution, as it doesn't always work.

A passenger divided opinion online after he refused to swap seats with a mum so she could sit with her daughter.

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And another passenger refused to swap seats so a husband could sit with his wife and child on a plane.

Frequent flyers have also revealed how passengers can get a whole row to themselves on a plane without paying for it.

If travelling a pair, book the aisle and the window seat in a three-person row.

Passengers are unlikely to want a middle seat, leaving it empty, or if it is booked, can then ask them to move and offer them a better seat by the window or aisle instead.

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It doesn't always work – one traveller divided opinion after they refused to give up an empty row because they wanted to sleep during a flight.

Yet economy flights are about to get much better, as one airline is launching lie-flat beds.

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