The Airline booking site didn’t accept my credit card, so had to book on expedia (with the same credit card – no issue). This should have rung alarm bells as now I could not access ‘manage my booking’ or seat allocation buttons. Tight seats, unfriendly staff on trans-atlantic leg – better on the Asian legs. Claim we were 8 minutes late for boarding on USA inbound leg and denied boarding, then offered to fix it for $3800 – very generous!!! Primarily due to the pre-check for US customs, something that is not necessary on other airlines. Maybe US border protection know something we do not! Of course, the penalties about matches a new same day air fare – great business model for multiple sales on seats. Ground staff were most unwilling to minimize actual fare penalties and had no authority. I was told to ring the travel agent (making us feel less and less like Etihad customers), which was a challenge as Expedia claimed it was an airline issue. When I advised this to Etihad, the staff were polite, but still obliged to maximize the revenue. A family of five stuck in Abu Dhabi is an easy target. It was actually cheaper to rebook on Qatar rather than travel with Etihad and I understand that is what they preferred (we were not Etihad customers anyway). A low cost travel business model with a full service airline price tag. Good for backpackers, maybe business travelers; however, economy passengers should shop around. Qatar, Emirates and Gulf are all significantly better and worth the few extra dollars. Royal Jordanian marginally better and worth considering over Etihad.