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 Post subject: Re: buying 2 seats to fly
PostPosted: Sun Oct 16, 2011 1:25 am 
orange you glad?
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I was refunded part of ticket cost for a transatlantic flight because the man next to me took up more than half my seat.

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 Post subject: Re: buying 2 seats to fly
PostPosted: Sun Oct 16, 2011 10:58 am 
kismetjeska
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Really? That's so interesting. Do you mind me asking if you informed them, or if the staff noticed and refunded without you having to complain? Just intrigued.


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 Post subject: Re: buying 2 seats to fly
PostPosted: Sun Oct 16, 2011 4:22 pm 
orange you glad?
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SeetherChick wrote:
Really? That's so interesting. Do you mind me asking if you informed them, or if the staff noticed and refunded without you having to complain? Just intrigued.


The man felt bad for my discomfort, and contacted the airline. He had tried to buy two seats because he knew he didn't fit in one - but was told the flight was full. He was a very nice man, and we wanted to personally pay for part of my fare, but the airline reimbursed me instead. I wasn't really upset about the situation, it sucked to have to share a seat but the man tried his best to stay only in his and he was really nice about it.

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 Post subject: Re: buying 2 seats to fly
PostPosted: Sun Oct 16, 2011 4:39 pm 
orange wonder
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In your experience, Cara, as well as in the experiences I've heard of not only those who have had to sit next to a very large person, but in the words of those who are also obese, this is not a black and white situation and it goes a bit beyond what seems like the best thing to do logically and ethically. I've met obese people who refuse to fly any more because they know of the embarrassment, and the ones I've met that do continue to fly have told me they try as hard as they can not to infringe on the next person's space if they can't get a second seat.

I'm still torn as to whether or not this is discrimination, though. It seems logically reasonable to have an obese person pay for a second seat as redesigning the planes to accomodate larger people would take forever and cost a fortune.

That said, I am of almost totally average height and weight. I do not mind being seated next to an obese person as I can think of one thing that is ten times worse: being seated IN FRONT OF a four year old who constantly kicks the seat and the parents are doing absolutely nothing about it.

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 Post subject: Re: buying 2 seats to fly
PostPosted: Wed Oct 19, 2011 9:02 pm 
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I sort of agree too i'm afraid. I hate being squished on a flight. i long to upgrade to business class where the armrests often are fixed. Although my boyfriend and I are both really tall and always try to bag the exit row seats for the extra leg room but its never gauranteed. (Randomly why do cheap flights like easy-jet tell you how to open the doors and on more expensive flights they dont? More crew to do it for you maybe? Ive had the easyjet training let me get the good seats! ha ha) Plus The arm rests cant be raised in those seats either.

Conversley, my sister who is just over 5foot tall and slim got let of her overweight luggage charge because she played the 'I weigh less than your average passenger'.


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 Post subject: Re: buying 2 seats to fly
PostPosted: Wed Oct 19, 2011 9:17 pm 
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starfish88 wrote:
Conversley, my sister who is just over 5foot tall and slim got let of her overweight luggage charge because she played the 'I weigh less than your average passenger'.


I'll have to remember that lil' trick.

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 Post subject: Re: buying 2 seats to fly
PostPosted: Thu Oct 20, 2011 3:12 am 
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I can understand what you're saying
but what if one of those 'huge' people you were sat next to, was suffering from COE? or was chronically binging....
Then by our own definition of eating disorders, IT IS NOT THEIR FAULT for being the size they are.
We may be physically uncomfortable by them sat next to us, but who's to say that someone who saw one of the many severely underweight members we have here on WBB on a flight wouldn't also feel uncomfortable, or triggered. Do they have a right to ask to be moved, or for 'us' to sit somewhere else because of it?

Also some airlines, on newer planes- cathay pacific is one of them, are adding extra leg room and seat width to their planes, I know the airbus A380 (think its that number) has slightly wider seats with more legroom.

and I agree with Becky. Im not a really frequent flyer- 2 flights a year at most, but they are always long distance- ie canada to australia, uk to australia- so around 22 hours in the air, and the MOST irratating passengers are the chronic wee'ers who require you to move EVERYTIME they want to go to the bathroom (ie the reason you should book an aisle seat so you stop disturbing everyone)
the people infront on you who turn on their overhead light halfway through the 16 hour flight when everyone is pretty much sleeping
and the wonderful people who recline onto your lap, whilst the child behind you knee's you in the back


I'm so looking forward to 22 hours and 45 minutes on a plane in 4 weeks time :/




*edited because i forgot a .
and therefore it hurt my grammatical crazy eyes*

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 Post subject: Re: buying 2 seats to fly
PostPosted: Thu Oct 20, 2011 3:29 am 
Why should an overweight person pay more to fly just because someone else wants more space and comfort? As Nat has just pointed out, it's not something someone always has control over. It's often caused by an eating disorder. Should people who have to travel in wheelchairs have to pay extra?


As far as I'm concerned if you fly in economy you get what you pay for- cramped and unpleasant conditions. You have to expect that and it is terrible and really profiteering that they do nothing to rectify this. If you want more room and space then you have to pay the extra to go into business or first class. This will not change while people have the attitude that other people must accomodate for them. Even new planes will continue to be built with unrealisic and unhealthy (for a vast amount of people it would be unhealthy for them to have the deemed "ideal" hip size to sit in these seats) seat sizes. Do you not think it's just as uncomfortable (perhaps more so) for the larger person? Why are they the ones to pay? The impression I'm getting here is people think it is their fault and that they have control over the situation and must be the ones to rectify it just because they're not slim.


I don't think it's fair (and I think it is incredibly sizest) to demand those larger pay more to accomodate for those thinner. Tbh I've found this thread incredibly disappointing and upsetting to read on a recovery site that is supposed to incorporate body acceptance and eating disorder awareness.


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 Post subject: Re: buying 2 seats to fly
PostPosted: Thu Oct 20, 2011 4:04 am 
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Since 2008, Transport Canada has had a one-person, one-fare policy. Before that, Air Canada did charge extra for wheelchairs. All you need for the second seat is a doctor's note stating that you require two seats, and that note must be presented to the airline 48 hours before the flight leaves, or you can be refused service.

People who travel in wheelchairs contact the airline well ahead of time to advise them about the traveler's needs. I have a feeling that people who are obese are reluctant to call the airline and request a second seat, because this would draw attention to their weight, something they are probably already self-conscious about.

No one is saying who to blame for how the passenger came to be obese. I think we all recognize that obesity could well be a symptom of an eating disorder. But logically, if you are a large person, you will take up a large amount of space. and that space has to come from somewhere. and I'm not okay with sharing my already cramped and uncomfortable (and expensive) seat with someone's flank.

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 Post subject: Re: buying 2 seats to fly
PostPosted: Thu Oct 20, 2011 9:17 am 
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I don't think you can really blame the seats in aircrafts. They are standard seat sizes, like public buses and any kind of public seat like restaurants, cinemas, waiting rooms, etc. Driver seat in cars... I can't help but think that it's all relative, you know?
Quote:
I am also inclined to compare this to say, a roller coaster. Is it discriminatory that obese and/or short persons can't ride a roller coaster safely? Do theme parks discriminate against midgets? How humiliating is it for a little person to have to ride the Kiddie Coaster?

I kind of agree... like maybe I'm being harsh but it's sort of just an unfortunate effect of having a disorder that causes a person to be obese. Other disorders have effects that the sufferers have to unfortunately deal with. This might just be one of those things. I don't know... I guess it's just a condition of flying.

It is true that obese people cannot sit in the emergency exits, because they would hinder evacuation. Harsh but true. Elderly, disabled, pregnant women and children also cannot sit there. It's not discrimination, it's safety. Actually, even the other side of the coin - an underweight person - couldn't sit there unless they could truthfully answer the question 'the window weighs 15 kilos, are you able and willing to operate it?' (Not likely - not quite at healthy weight myself, it's very difficult - so so so heavy!)
(Oh and the reason that only some airlines give an exit brief to those passengers is just down to each individual airline's policy, the main doors do not necessarily need to brief because they are already covered by crew. But yeah, also on smaller aircraft one crew will often cover two doors, so they brief passengers so there is someone close by to take over if necessary. But if you are sitting at an overwing exit, then you need to know the drill because you're the one there to open it.)

Passengers need to sit in their seat with the armrests down for takeoff and landing, because it provides an essential support base for the body in case of a crash landing (this is why crew often adopt a special position during takeoff and landing that passengers don't, because we don't have that support in our seats). And quite often, obese passengers sit down and immediately pull up the armrest because they can't fit otherwise. So safety-wise, if you can't fit in one seat, you need to make sure you have both seats for yourself, so you need to book two seats. Should you have to pay? Well, at the end of the day, airlines are a business, not a public service. One person taking two seats with one ticket when they could otherwise have two people and two payments. Harsh again perhaps, but airlines are there to make money.

I have to say, I have encountered some obese passengers who become highly insulted when given an extension seatbelt or asked to move from the emergency exits. I certainly do not enjoy doing it, it is as awkward as anything but if the seatbelt won't close then I have to. Also trying to pull down an armrest when the person is expanded into the next seat is excrutiating, so rest assured, we certainly do not choose to make an issue out of it - we hate having to do it. We were once accused of 'parading' a passenger, his extension seatbelt and his need to move all the way down the aircraft, when we just needed him out of the exit seat and into one at the back (only free one). It was upsetting when we were only following procedure and trying to do it as subtly as possible. It's just... being obese, even if it is not your fault, it's an illness etc, does have consequences and repercussions that can't be helped?

Don't know if I've totally veered off topic but just my two cents worth from aircrew point of view.


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 Post subject: Re: buying 2 seats to fly
PostPosted: Thu Oct 20, 2011 9:27 am 
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Butterfly wrote:
Tbh I've found this thread incredibly disappointing and upsetting to read on a recovery site that is supposed to incorporate body acceptance and eating disorder awareness.


I don't think this has anything to do with body acceptance or eating disorder awareness and the presumption made by that comment that the contents of this thread paint a picture that does not embody those things (what does that say about those that have commented) is well... exactly that presumptuous (and quite possibly rude or maybe unfair is a better word choice)

My mother is overweight and I would certainly wager she does (or rather, since I don't live there anymore so I can't vouch for what I witness, has in the past -- particularly during my teen years -- suffered from COE or BED). Do my conflicts with my mother stem from her weight? No. In fact it used to make me sad that she was going through that. It's also made me considerably more aware that just as it isn't as simple sometimes as not taking pills, not purging, or eating... on the flip not eating a more balanced meal sometimes isn't that simple. I've even blogged about how I feel like people don't see that anorexia and COE/BED have a LOT more in common than people would realize. How obesity and emaciation (often symptoms of the aforementioned) share a lot of medical complications as well.

However, when did anyone ever say they couldn't stand the person? Most of us acknowledged there would be embarrassment involved.

In my opinion the difference is that the discomfort illicited is a physical discomfort as you have paid for a whole seat. You have paid a lot for that whole seat. Sitting with someone sitting on top of you or slammed up against you - resulting in you being slammed against the window is highly uncomfortable. Fact. No matter what you think of the person next to you as a PERSON does not change the fact that that is physically uncomfortable and there is no doubt that airlines are receiving complaints.

It also, arguably, could be deemed a safety issue for the same reason people that utilize lap belt extenders are not allowed to sit in the emergency exit row.

By saying that their encroachment into my personal and physical space is okay, isn't that sizeist against the fact that I'm a smaller person? Saying that I don't have the right to that space? Saying that it's okay because I'm smaller and the person probably won't be touching me as much?

Sizeism and weight stigma can go both ways.


#and I'm out.

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 Post subject: Re: buying 2 seats to fly
PostPosted: Thu Oct 20, 2011 12:04 pm 
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Quote:
In my opinion the difference is that the discomfort illicited is a physical discomfort as you have paid for a whole seat. You have paid a lot for that whole seat. Sitting with someone sitting on top of you or slammed up against you - resulting in you being slammed against the window is highly uncomfortable. Fact. No matter what you think of the person next to you as a PERSON does not change the fact that that is physically uncomfortable and there is no doubt that airlines are receiving complaints.


I agree. Plane tickets are extremely expensive. As someone of average weight and height, It isn't fair for me to pay for a whole seat and only receive half of what I paid for. What if you went to the store and bought a pair of jeans, but at the register, they cut off one pants leg and sent you home with half a pair of jeans. You would be upset right? Because you are only getting half of what you paid for. You can apply that to many different situations. If I spend my hard earned money for a seat, I should get that full seat. If you are larger and you take up more than one seat, you should pay for the extra seat. It just makes sense. If they don't want to pay for two seats, they should upgrade to 1st class where the seats are wider.

It isn't discrimination. It's common sense.


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 Post subject: Re: buying 2 seats to fly
PostPosted: Thu Oct 20, 2011 12:38 pm 
orange you glad?
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Butterfly wrote:
Why should an overweight person pay more to fly just because someone else wants more space and comfort? As Nat has just pointed out, it's not something someone always has control over. It's often caused by an eating disorder. Should people who have to travel in wheelchairs have to pay extra?


Why should someone pay more because they want or need more space? Because they are paying for the space they take up. Even if you have no control over your size - you are buying space on a transport shuttle - there for you must pay for that amount of space.

Butterfly wrote:
As far as I'm concerned if you fly in economy you get what you pay for- cramped and unpleasant conditions. You have to expect that and it is terrible and really profiteering that they do nothing to rectify this. If you want more room and space then you have to pay the extra to go into business or first class. This will not change while people have the attitude that other people must accomodate for them.


The larger person who requires two seats is asking me to accommodate for them by taking up space in my seat. Yes, you get what you pay for - and I paid for a whole seat. If you don't fit in the seat you paid for - then buy two seats.


Butterfly wrote:
[color=#4000FF]I don't think it's fair (and I think it is incredibly sizest) to demand those larger pay more to accomodate for those thinner. Tbh I've found this thread incredibly disappointing and upsetting to read on a recovery site that is supposed to incorporate body acceptance and eating disorder awareness.


It is also sizest and unfair to ask those that are thinner to accommodate for those that larger. You ask why the larger should be the ones that are uncomfortable and have to pay more. Why should the thinner have to share their seat? I am entitled to the amount of space that I paid for and I shouldn't have to make due just because I happen to not use all of it. Every point you've made has insinuated that because I'm a smaller person I'm less entitled to the space - which is also sizest. And to say you're disappointed in people is rude and unfair in my opinion.

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 Post subject: Re: buying 2 seats to fly
PostPosted: Thu Oct 20, 2011 1:20 pm 
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Butterfly I'm sorry if you were offended by me starting this thread. I just found it frustrating and wanted to see what other people thought.

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 Post subject: Re: buying 2 seats to fly
PostPosted: Thu Oct 20, 2011 1:26 pm 
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Honestly, it makes sense to me. If you take up more than one seat, you should have to pay for it. Yeah, planes are cramped, and you shouldn't expect them to be luxurious unless you're in first class, but they're cramped enough without someone infringing on your space. I don't think it's discriminatory. It just makes sense.

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