If you have flown before, then you are more than aware that airline coach seats do not offer much in the way of comfort or space. For a lot of folks, especially obese passengers, airplane travel has become an ordeal filled with discomfort and stress because of the drastic reduction in seat size over the years.
**This article is based on material obtained from sources pertaining to social media, airline, travel, and health websites, which is referenced within the narrative**
Unfortunately, while airline seats have shrunk, Americans' waistlines have expanded. In the United States, almost 42% of adults are dealing with obesity - a medical condition involving an excessive accumulation of body fat. Often, when obese people have to travel by air, they either voluntarily purchase an extra ticket for the seat next to them, or the airlines, like JetBlue Airways, have policies in place that require their overweight passengers to fork up the money for another seat.
Despite the fact that these policies are meant to ensure a comfortable experience for all of those onboard, one obese traveler shared their story on Reddit about an altercation that arose due to her extra seat.
I am obese. Like I am comfortable having two seats in the plane type of obese. I am well aware of that and I really don't like to bother people with my weight.
She was traveling to a conference alone by air and had purchased a pair of seats. Technically, she could fit in one seat, but if a passenger is sitting next to her then the side of her body would touch that stranger.
In her own words:
I fit in one but my side is usually touching the person next to me and I feel uncomfortable for them. It happened to me that they gave me nasty looks and I felt extremely uncomfortable the whole flight.
When she sat down during this particular flight, the row was empty, so she raised the armrest. But then a man and woman noticed the empty seats next to her and took them. She writes:
Exactly what I was afraid of happened. My side kept touching the guy next to me and he even pushed me a bit when he moved in the seat.
So as her discomfort grew, she asked him if he could take the seat he was originally assigned and explained to him that she had paid extra for the seat he was in so she could be comfortable. But the man refused to get up and emphasized that he wanted to be next to his girlfriend. In her own words:
Well, I told him I understand but I feel uncomfortable and I paid for the second seat so exactly this doesn't happen. He refused again and started to chat with his GF.
Since he wasn't budging, she decided to flag down the flight attendant and filled her in on what was going on. After the flight attendant told the man to vacate his seat, both he and his girlfriend gave her a "nasty look," and the girlfriend muttered a derogatory statement about her weight.
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Hewitt, Ed. "The Airplane Seat: Narrow, Cramped - and About to Get Worse." Smarter Travel
"Special-size Needs Passenger Policies." iFly
Farberman, Rhea & Bright, Witney. "State of Obesity 2022: Better Policies for a Healthier America.' Trust for America's Health
u/Tessy23. "AITA for not giving up my second "free" seat next to me in the plane?" Reddit
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