Author Topic: Choosing to close a window view on a plane, okay or not so much?  (Read 7150 times)

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buvezdevin

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The thread about choosing seats on a plane reminded me of a minor occurrence some years back.

When I fly, which used to be quite often for work, I have long known that it is best for me to avoid window seats generally.  The reason being that a glimpse out of the window has often been a trigger for anxiety - I know flying is generally safe, but some vestigial part of my brain will start saying "should not be in the air".  So I try for an aisle seat, and if none are available, I choose a middle seat.

It has infrequently happened that I none the less am in a window seat.  In such cases, i prefer to pull down the window cover.  Once, when flying from a location I don't specifically recall - though do recall it wasn't one I would have thought particularly scenic from the air - a woman asked me to raise the window cover so her child could see the view on take off.  I honestly do not remember if I did or did not agree to do so - I would have been uncomfortable in either case, deny someone a view or avoid an anxiety trigger.

If I were in that situation again, I think I would decline to raise the window cover, or offer to change seats, explaining I did not care to have a view while flying.

Was wondering what e-hellion views are on the subject of airplane window views - the windows have covers, but what is reasonable etiquette regarding the use of same?
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C0mputerGeek

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Re: Choosing to close a window view on a plane, okay or not so much?
« Reply #1 on: October 09, 2012, 09:14:07 PM »
When I fly, which used to be quite often for work, I have long known that it is best for me to avoid window seats generally.  The reason being that a glimpse out of the window has often been a trigger for anxiety - I know flying is generally safe, but some vestigial part of my brain will start saying "should not be in the air".  So I try for an aisle seat, and if none are available, I choose a middle seat.

It has infrequently happened that I none the less am in a window seat.  In such cases, i prefer to pull down the window cover.  Once, when flying from a location I don't specifically recall - though do recall it wasn't one I would have thought particularly scenic from the air - a woman asked me to raise the window cover so her child could see the view on take off.  I honestly do not remember if I did or did not agree to do so - I would have been uncomfortable in either case, deny someone a view or avoid an anxiety trigger.

Control of the window belongs to the person sitting next to it. It is a kindness to consider those around you, but not always feasible (especially, given your anxiety issues). IMHO, you were certainly within your rights to say no.
« Last Edit: October 09, 2012, 10:15:32 PM by C0mputerGeek »

Tea Drinker

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Re: Choosing to close a window view on a plane, okay or not so much?
« Reply #2 on: October 09, 2012, 09:48:01 PM »
It's your window seat (whether or not you asked for it specifically) and your choice. This goes both ways, in my opinion: I have told people that no, I was not going to close the window so that they could have better contrast for the movie, because I wanted to look out. That's why I'd asked for a window seat in the first place. (Seat-back video screens seem to have eliminated this problem.)

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lovepickles

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Re: Choosing to close a window view on a plane, okay or not so much?
« Reply #3 on: October 09, 2012, 10:11:02 PM »
Sometimes during takeoff and landing the flight attendants require you to open the shade, but beyond that  if you are at the window it is yours to move. Unless the window is partially shared with the person in front or behind you then you might have someone that wants it up or down but then you could always shove a jacket in your part of the crack.

What I hate is when I'm trying to sleep and an open window lets a ton of light in.

kherbert05

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Re: Choosing to close a window view on a plane, okay or not so much?
« Reply #4 on: October 09, 2012, 10:49:37 PM »
I thought the shades had to be up for take off and landing - though never understood the reason. It isn't like the pilot is turning her head to check the blind spot.


That said. I would have offered to swap seats the Mom and her child could move over to the window and middle you get the aisle seat. Kid gets to look out the window and you get the better seat and avoid your trigger. I'm like you don't like to look out the window.
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katycoo

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Re: Choosing to close a window view on a plane, okay or not so much?
« Reply #5 on: October 09, 2012, 11:19:28 PM »
I thought the shades had to be up for take off and landing - though never understood the reason. It isn't like the pilot is turning her head to check the blind spot.

In the event of a malfunction or fire, the source is more quickly identifiable by staff.  Takeoff and landing are the most likely times for such a mishap to occur.

Raintree

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Re: Choosing to close a window view on a plane, okay or not so much?
« Reply #6 on: October 09, 2012, 11:37:51 PM »
I'd offer to change seats. The mom and child clearly wanted a window, and you clearly wanted an aisle, so it's win-win if you just trade.

KenveeB

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Re: Choosing to close a window view on a plane, okay or not so much?
« Reply #7 on: October 09, 2012, 11:43:28 PM »
I agree that changing seats seemed to be the best option. But if for whatever reason that wasn't an option, I'd politely say, "I'm sorry, but I want it closed." Then close my eyes or bury my nose in my book to avoid more discussion. The decision of what to do with the window shade belongs to the person with the window seat.

GSNW

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Re: Choosing to close a window view on a plane, okay or not so much?
« Reply #8 on: October 10, 2012, 12:16:41 AM »
Agreed with above.  It's nice to offer to switch if you feel like it, but youre certainly not obligated to switch or move the shade if you'd rather not.  Declining politely is sufficient.

ddawn23

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Re: Choosing to close a window view on a plane, okay or not so much?
« Reply #9 on: October 10, 2012, 01:56:55 AM »
When I fly, which used to be quite often for work, I have long known that it is best for me to avoid window seats generally.  The reason being that a glimpse out of the window has often been a trigger for anxiety - I know flying is generally safe, but some vestigial part of my brain will start saying "should not be in the air".  So I try for an aisle seat, and if none are available, I choose a middle seat.

It has infrequently happened that I none the less am in a window seat.  In such cases, i prefer to pull down the window cover.  Once, when flying from a location I don't specifically recall - though do recall it wasn't one I would have thought particularly scenic from the air - a woman asked me to raise the window cover so her child could see the view on take off.  I honestly do not remember if I did or did not agree to do so - I would have been uncomfortable in either case, deny someone a view or avoid an anxiety trigger.

Control of the window belongs to the person sitting next to it. It is a kindness to consider those around you, but not always feasible (especially, given your anxiety issues). IMHO, you were certainly within your rights to say no.
I disagree.  The window affects all three (or however many) people in the row, and the person sitting at the window should be mindful of the other people in the row when raising or lowering the shade more than a few inches.  That said, the person at the window has veto power in the case of motionsickness, anxiety/fear of flying, the sun being in one's eyes, etc.

C0mputerGeek

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Re: Choosing to close a window view on a plane, okay or not so much?
« Reply #10 on: October 10, 2012, 03:44:51 AM »
I disagree.  The window affects all three (or however many) people in the row, and the person sitting at the window should be mindful of the other people in the row when raising or lowering the shade more than a few inches.  That said, the person at the window has veto power in the case of motionsickness, anxiety/fear of flying, the sun being in one's eyes, etc.

...which is exactly what I said.

Sharnita

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Re: Choosing to close a window view on a plane, okay or not so much?
« Reply #11 on: October 10, 2012, 07:48:42 AM »
The window being shut could be an anxiety trigger as well.  It might not be that they want to look out at the pretty view but to be able to tell that everything is OK.  I think I'd explain and offer to switch seats, at least temporarily.  If they just needed it for take off I might close my eyes.

otterwoman

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Re: Choosing to close a window view on a plane, okay or not so much?
« Reply #12 on: October 10, 2012, 07:53:54 AM »
When I was 12, I was flying alone to visit my grandparents. I was afraid of heights and had motion-sickness, so of course, I was given a window seat. ::) I shut the shade. The business man in the aisle seat reached over me to raise the shade up.

I put it back down. He raised it again.

I put it back down. He said he wanted to see out the window. I offered to switch seats. He declined.

The shade stayed down.

WillyNilly

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Re: Choosing to close a window view on a plane, okay or not so much?
« Reply #13 on: October 10, 2012, 08:05:33 AM »
Like others, I think its up to the person at the window seat to decide. With the exception the airline staff can override that (during take-off & landing, red-eyes flying through a sunny timezone for passengers who's brain's are set for it being night, etc).

For me, I get slightly claustrophobic so I prefer the window open if I'm next to it - seeing I'm moving and not "stuck" greatly reduces the anxiety for me. But once I'm in the middle or asile seat I deal with it.

Mikayla

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Re: Choosing to close a window view on a plane, okay or not so much?
« Reply #14 on: October 10, 2012, 07:03:01 PM »
My window, my rules.

I can see the logic that all those in the row are impacted by whether it's shaded or not, but if one person isn't the final arbiter, there's no way to figure out whose issue trumps the other one's.