Author Topic: Choosing seats on a plane: Is this rude?  (Read 11974 times)

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Nuts&Makeup

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Re: Choosing seats on a plane: Is this rude?
« Reply #45 on: October 14, 2012, 06:16:42 PM »
I don't think it's rude, but I think its getting to be an unrealistic hope that the middle won't be used. I have had to fly several times this year and  each one was filled. Those middle seats are excellent places for the airline employees flying on standby!

miranova

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Re: Choosing seats on a plane: Is this rude?
« Reply #46 on: October 14, 2012, 07:03:11 PM »
I agree that every person, whether coupled or single, has the same opportunity to book their preferred seat ahead of time.  Therefore it can not be rude for couples who book first to choose what they prefer.  Yes it is rude to talk around someone, but that is a seperate issue.  That is what it rude, not the booking of preferred seats for whatever reason.  Someone's thought process can't be rude, only their actions.  Booking two particular seats is not rude.  The rude things would be:  not taking no for an answer when offering a switch, sighing or acting otherwise annoyed when the stranger refuses, or talking over a stranger the whole flight.  If the couple just sits there and does their own thing the whole flight, I can't see how this could inconvenience the single traveler in any way, any differently than sitting next to two unrelated strangers would.  So their internal motivation makes no difference as long as they don't act rudely.

Betelnut

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Re: Choosing seats on a plane: Is this rude?
« Reply #47 on: October 14, 2012, 07:06:49 PM »
But doesn't the couple who are booking the best seats WANT to sit together so when they take the best seats, they are forcing someone to chose the "least best" seat knowing that, if needed, one of the couple will end up in the middle anyway.  I'm not saying it is rude but just...manipulative?
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Lindee

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Re: Choosing seats on a plane: Is this rude?
« Reply #48 on: October 14, 2012, 07:25:25 PM »
On the last few international flights I took passengers had to return to their assigned seating for landing and takeoff if they had changed seats during the flight. (presumably for identification purposes in case of an accident).

TheaterDiva1

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Re: Choosing seats on a plane: Is this rude?
« Reply #49 on: October 14, 2012, 07:28:19 PM »
Agreed, it's not fun when that happens. My husband experienced it recently while flying for work-- he was sandwiched between two people who clearly knew each other and chatted over him throughout the flight. Is there any polite way of asking people to stop, when they do that?

Why didn't he just ask if either of them would switch with him?  They they could sit together, and your DH benefits two ways - no more talking over him, plus he's be moving into a better seat (whether it be the aisle or the window, that has to be better than the middle, right?)... everyone wins!

sparksals

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Re: Choosing seats on a plane: Is this rude?
« Reply #50 on: October 15, 2012, 01:29:00 PM »
But doesn't the couple who are booking the best seats WANT to sit together so when they take the best seats, they are forcing someone to chose the "least best" seat knowing that, if needed, one of the couple will end up in the middle anyway.  I'm not saying it is rude but just...manipulative?

I much prefer comfort on a flight.  I specifically select window and aisle for us and if someone is between us, I don't have a problem with that.  I do it to have a greater chance of the middle seat empty.  I go to the website first to book our seats.  If the person who doesn't want to sit in the middle with a couple, perhaps they should check in earlier online so they can select their favourite seat.

This is a first come, first served thing.  Nothing more, nothing less.   It is not rude or manipulative.  It is simply a part of the inconvenience of flying.   There is nothing wrong with doing what is necessary within the rules of the airline to maximize our comfort.

wolfie

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Re: Choosing seats on a plane: Is this rude?
« Reply #51 on: October 15, 2012, 01:50:39 PM »
But doesn't the couple who are booking the best seats WANT to sit together so when they take the best seats, they are forcing someone to chose the "least best" seat knowing that, if needed, one of the couple will end up in the middle anyway.  I'm not saying it is rude but just...manipulative?

It ends up being better for the singleton though. If two strangers book the window and aisle the singleton will be stuck with the middle. If a couple books the window and aisle the singleton might be asked to switch to a better seat.

miranova

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Re: Choosing seats on a plane: Is this rude?
« Reply #52 on: October 15, 2012, 10:46:49 PM »
But doesn't the couple who are booking the best seats WANT to sit together so when they take the best seats, they are forcing someone to chose the "least best" seat knowing that, if needed, one of the couple will end up in the middle anyway.  I'm not saying it is rude but just...manipulative?

So what if they want to sit together?  Again, I don't see how internal motivation makes a difference.  As long as they don't ACT rudely, what they WANT inside their own heads won't impact the single traveler in any way. 


kareng57

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Re: Choosing seats on a plane: Is this rude?
« Reply #53 on: October 15, 2012, 11:06:07 PM »
But doesn't the couple who are booking the best seats WANT to sit together so when they take the best seats, they are forcing someone to chose the "least best" seat knowing that, if needed, one of the couple will end up in the middle anyway.  I'm not saying it is rude but just...manipulative?

So what if they want to sit together?  Again, I don't see how internal motivation makes a difference.  As long as they don't ACT rudely, what they WANT inside their own heads won't impact the single traveler in any way.


Agree. I don't see how it's manipulative at all - they book the window and aisle seats knowing that it's very possible that someone will book the middle seat and that he/she might want to stay put.

Of course it would be rude if they keep trying to cajole Middle to move, and/or keep talking over Middle passenger.  But if they don't, it's just a gamble that they took that did not work out.

Jaina

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Re: Choosing seats on a plane: Is this rude?
« Reply #54 on: October 15, 2012, 11:39:02 PM »
Agreed, it's not fun when that happens. My husband experienced it recently while flying for work-- he was sandwiched between two people who clearly knew each other and chatted over him throughout the flight. Is there any polite way of asking people to stop, when they do that?

Why didn't he just ask if either of them would switch with him?  They they could sit together, and your DH benefits two ways - no more talking over him, plus he's be moving into a better seat (whether it be the aisle or the window, that has to be better than the middle, right?)... everyone wins!

He did ask if they'd like to switch. They airily replied "Oh no, we're fine!"

kareng57

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Re: Choosing seats on a plane: Is this rude?
« Reply #55 on: October 16, 2012, 12:44:36 AM »
Agreed, it's not fun when that happens. My husband experienced it recently while flying for work-- he was sandwiched between two people who clearly knew each other and chatted over him throughout the flight. Is there any polite way of asking people to stop, when they do that?

Why didn't he just ask if either of them would switch with him?  They they could sit together, and your DH benefits two ways - no more talking over him, plus he's be moving into a better seat (whether it be the aisle or the window, that has to be better than the middle, right?)... everyone wins!

He did ask if they'd like to switch. They airily replied "Oh no, we're fine!"


Ouch.  Obviously they both wanted to keep the more comfortable seats - window and aisle - and never mind the poor sap in the middle.  For travel-partners who "plan" this, and hope that the middle seat might not be taken and it actually is - they need to find some other way to converse.  It's terribly rude to keep doing this over the middle-seater, never mind how it happened.

Betelnut

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Re: Choosing seats on a plane: Is this rude?
« Reply #56 on: October 16, 2012, 09:31:47 AM »
But doesn't the couple who are booking the best seats WANT to sit together so when they take the best seats, they are forcing someone to chose the "least best" seat knowing that, if needed, one of the couple will end up in the middle anyway.  I'm not saying it is rude but just...manipulative?

So what if they want to sit together?  Again, I don't see how internal motivation makes a difference.  As long as they don't ACT rudely, what they WANT inside their own heads won't impact the single traveler in any way.


Agree. I don't see how it's manipulative at all - they book the window and aisle seats knowing that it's very possible that someone will book the middle seat and that he/she might want to stay put.

Of course it would be rude if they keep trying to cajole Middle to move, and/or keep talking over Middle passenger.  But if they don't, it's just a gamble that they took that did not work out.

I guess I think of it as sort of manipulative because they are booking those two seats (that are not together) hoping that they can get three seats for two.  People generally won't take the middle seat unless that is the only one available.  "Hey let's take the two end seats and hope that no one will take the middle one!  If they do, we'll just ask them to move!"

So they are trying to force the situation to their advantage.  A more honest way to book seats would be to book seats that are together as, generally speaking, that's what they want anyway!
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revenges." -- Feste, Twelfth Night by William Shakespeare.

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Miss Unleaded

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Re: Choosing seats on a plane: Is this rude?
« Reply #57 on: October 16, 2012, 10:18:21 AM »

I guess I think of it as sort of manipulative because they are booking those two seats (that are not together) hoping that they can get three seats for two.  People generally won't take the middle seat unless that is the only one available.  "Hey let's take the two end seats and hope that no one will take the middle one!  If they do, we'll just ask them to move!"

So they are trying to force the situation to their advantage.  A more honest way to book seats would be to book seats that are together as, generally speaking, that's what they want anyway!

I totally agree with you, but I don't think further discussion will be fruitful   :)

For those people who say 'just go online and book in earlier if you want better seats', it's not always possible.  Every year my I travel from Sweden to Australia and for whatever reason (perhaps because the trip is over 30 hours from start to finish) I have never, not once, been able to check in for my flight online.  Sometimes I haven't even been able to check in for the whole journey at the airport :(

drzim

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Re: Choosing seats on a plane: Is this rude?
« Reply #58 on: October 16, 2012, 11:45:07 AM »
I don't see anything rude about it --first come first serve when booking seats.

As a single person, I have basically the same choices when booking online.  In fact, I recently booked a flight to DC for a conference I'm attending.

I prefer a window seat, so I purposely chose to book a seat in a row where the aisle seat was already taken, but the middle seat was not.  I also chose a row closer to the back of the plane, as the front rows tend to fill up faster.  If the flight is not full, there is a good chance that the middle seat will remain vacant.

I could have chosen to book in an empty row, or in a row closer to the front, but I booked my seat to increase the chance of having an empty middle.  I don't think this is rude at all.

sparksals

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Re: Choosing seats on a plane: Is this rude?
« Reply #59 on: October 16, 2012, 08:48:53 PM »
But doesn't the couple who are booking the best seats WANT to sit together so when they take the best seats, they are forcing someone to chose the "least best" seat knowing that, if needed, one of the couple will end up in the middle anyway.  I'm not saying it is rude but just...manipulative?

So what if they want to sit together?  Again, I don't see how internal motivation makes a difference.  As long as they don't ACT rudely, what they WANT inside their own heads won't impact the single traveler in any way.


Agree. I don't see how it's manipulative at all - they book the window and aisle seats knowing that it's very possible that someone will book the middle seat and that he/she might want to stay put.

Of course it would be rude if they keep trying to cajole Middle to move, and/or keep talking over Middle passenger.  But if they don't, it's just a gamble that they took that did not work out.

I guess I think of it as sort of manipulative because they are booking those two seats (that are not together) hoping that they can get three seats for two.  People generally won't take the middle seat unless that is the only one available.  "Hey let's take the two end seats and hope that no one will take the middle one!  If they do, we'll just ask them to move!"

So they are trying to force the situation to their advantage.  A more honest way to book seats would be to book seats that are together as, generally speaking, that's what they want anyway!

Well, there are people who book window and/or aisle hoping no one sits beside them.   It is no different than one person or a couple doing the same thing.

There is NOTHING dishonest about booking aisle/window for a couple.  I don't want to sit in the middle and I won't if I don't have to.  I book a middle so a single person can sit in window or aisle?  Why would I do that?  I want comfort on a plane.  If I have the opp to choose my seat, I will choose it as best suits us.  Nothing dishonest about that.