Several Seat Stories

February 5, 2014

in Seat Stories

I fly about once a year so I am not a frequent flier, but I have experienced many of the same bad experiences. Seat reclining really should be limited.

On a flight to Stockholm on a wide body, my husband and I were in the middle section; he was on the aisle. In the row in front, a couple was seated in the window/aisle seats and their 3 kids in the center in front of us. These kids were older. They had their seats reclined as far down as possible the whole flight and on this plane that was quite far. I had to be in one position the entire 8 hour flight. When I needed to go to the bathroom, I could not stand up, not even close. I had to hold on to the headrests of 2 of their seats while I inched along across the armrest and my husband’s seat in a bent backwards position. The kids gave me very dirty looks for disturbing them. If looks could kill! And they did not sleep; they were laughing and being rowdy the whole flight but had to have their seats all the way back.

I had another flight with seat issues. I NEVER recline my seat all the way as a courtesy to the person behind me. I did recline slightly on an overnight flight to get some sleep. I promptly had knees pressed hard into my back. I thought there must be some really tall man behind me and put my seat up till it was barely reclined, just enough to keep my head back and still knees. I got up to go to the bathroom and saw the man behind me was not tall at all. He was a short man who slid himself down on his seat and deliberately pressed his knees hard into the back of my seat.

And on a flight home from Puerto Rico, I was in the middle seat as my hubby always wants the window seat. In the aisle seat was a very large man. He was a nice friendly man and I am not trying to judge people’s size, but perhaps he could have gotten 2 seats or upgraded. The arm rest was up and he took up about 6 inches of my seat as well as his. His legs would not fit in front of him, so he had one leg in the aisle and the other leg was in the space in front of me with his knee against my tray table. I stayed scrunched up against my husband the whole flight. Thank goodness it wasn’t a stranger in the window seat.

{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

Ryan February 6, 2014 at 3:35 pm

Sounds uncomfortable! I hope that last flight wasn't too long.


@MargaretAbbot10 February 15, 2014 at 1:59 am

Just one thing – the armrest between me and a stranger never goes up. Ever. If they can't fit in their seat then they need to get off the plane, keep away from the bonbons for a few days and then try again.


Guest February 19, 2014 at 3:45 pm

It's going to take more than a few days off the bonbons for a few days;) he didn't get that way overnight;) It has really become a problem with so many obese people at least in the U.S. I remember when flying was more of pleasure and people had respect for each other.


RedHead0186 February 24, 2014 at 1:51 pm

Exactly, that's the problem "respect." People take on a very "me me me" attitude and don't seem to care about what's going on around them (like your first example with the teenage kids).

Now a days seats don't really recline back that far, and I only recline back as much as I feel I need to to be comfortable. It comes down to the point where if others are going to recline, and I need to be comfortable, then I'll recline too. Not trying to be rude, but I try to compromise between not taking advantage while still maintaining my comfort.


obvance June 30, 2014 at 11:53 am

I am 5'8' tall and weigh 170 pounds and notice that the fat passengers are the norm (or my luck) next to me these days. Perhaps I am looking at this all wrong. Perhaps I should be the one buying two seats. And I should get two dinners of which I will only eat one and let the other sit temptling in front of my drooling fat seatmate (armrest down) until I throw it away.


boydboy April 27, 2014 at 3:09 pm

I fly almost weekly and couldn't agree more that reclining should be limited. On most newer jets it is, I only find seats recline a lot on older configurations. The reclining issue is very polarizing. Both sides have a point, on one hand if the seat is able to recline that is your right, on the other hand you can only recline at the expense of someone else's comfort. It really comes down to manners and the type of person you are. People who recline the entire flight like that are typically selfish entitlement types who act that way in all walks of life and are generally not liked by most people who know them.


Michael L.S. January 2, 2015 at 6:09 am

(1) ALWAYS ask that the back be pulled up at mealtimes. Many people (myself included) do this without thinking, but to some jerks it just doesn't occur that there's somebody behind them who also wants to eat in comfort (well, RELATIVE comfort).

(2) As far as the cretins who have their seat reclined the whole flight, especially if not actually sleeping, when going out to the aisle, pull back their seat as far as you can, and let it catapult them forward. MWAHAHAHAHAHAHA! Come on, it serves them right! If possible, grab a bunch of their hair in the process, too.

(3) NEVER accept the armrest being lifted. If the fat whale can't squeeze him/herself in the seat they purchased, then that's their problem. Be firm an insist on each of you getting the space you paid for. End of story.


Leave a Comment
Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Previous post:

Next post: