spoiled seat
 n.— «The revenue lost by leaving a seat empty—a spoiled seat, in industry parlance—typically exceeds the cost of compensating a bumped passenger. Only fear of angering people keeps airlines from overbooking more.» —“Bumped Fliers and No Plan B” by Jeff Bailey in Phoenix, Arizona New York Times May 30, 2007. (source: Double-Tongued Dictionary)

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