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Plane Passenger Finds Her Seat Occupied By Mom With A Kid After Coming Back From The Bathroom
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Plane Passenger Finds Her Seat Occupied By Mom With A Kid After Coming Back From The Bathroom

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Swapping plane seats to let a mother sit next to her kid may be a nice gesture many people would be happy to help with, yet it probably isn’t something to be demanded, especially when there is an option to book seats in advance.

At least, such was this Redditor’s question after she was confronted by another passenger with a kid during her flight to her sister’s wedding.

More info: Reddit

A woman refused to swap seats so a mother could sit next to her kid, and got ‘accidentally’ kicked the whole flight

Image credits: Jeffry Surianto (not the actual photo)

The traveler was already sitting in the middle seat when a mother and her son arrived

Image credit: u/Smart-Jellyfish1111

Image credits: Oleksandr P (not the actual photo)

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Image credit: u/Smart-Jellyfish1111

The mother insisted that the woman give up the middle seat so she could sit next to her son

Image credits: Rahul Singh (not the actual photo)

The traveler replied that she would only change to the window seat as she doesn’t like sitting in the aisle seat and got yelled at

A woman brought it to the Reddit AITA community online after she refused to swap seats with a mom of a 7-year-old, asking if she was a jerk to do so.

The woman explained that she was traveling across the country to attend her sister’s wedding when she was confronted by a mother of a 6 or 7-year-old child.

After boarding, the woman went straight to her middle seat, sat, and took out her headphones. When the mother and her son arrived, they had the window and the aisle seats booked, and the mom insisted that the woman had to move to the aisle seat, so she could sit next to her son.

The traveler who strongly dislikes sitting in the aisle seat politely refused and explained to the mother that she doesn’t like sitting there, yet would be willing to change for a window seat, and got yelled at by the woman.

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The woman shared that the mother kept ‘accidentally’ kicking her the whole flight and after briefly leaving her seat, she even found her things moved to the aisle seat. The woman called the flight attendant who asked the mother to take her booked seat.

Despite the woman keeping her seat, the mom would not drop it by ‘accidentally’ kicking the woman’s seat the whole flight

Image credits: cottonbro studio (not the actual photo)

Eventually, the mother moved the woman’s things to the aisle seat and only switched back when asked by a flight attendant

Travel and Leisure were discussing the right and wrong ways to ask about changing one’s seat, noting that there is an option to ask for a gate agent to make last-minute adjustments to the seating chart in cases when a flight isn’t full. 

Yet, they emphasized that once already on a plane, it is important to sit in one’s original seat first, and only after boarding is finished one may politely ask to switch their seat.

Similarly, the Independent addressed the question of what to do if another passenger asks to switch seats, explaining that taking a fellow passenger’s seat without asking is among the biggest misjudgments of travel etiquette.

On the other hand, when asked by another passenger to swap seats, in most cases, it is perfectly fine to decline the request without necessarily giving a certain excuse, as they explain it to be enough to reply politely along the lines of “Sorry, I prefer to stay here in this seat.”

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Finally, they remind travelers that a passenger is obligated to change their seat when asked by a flight attendant.

Coming back to the original story, the woman’s post gathered 2.6k upvotes on Reddit and people judged she was not the jerk in this situation.

What’s your take on the situation? Please, share your thoughts in the comment section below!

Redditors shared their takes on the situation

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laura_ketteridge avatar
arthbach
Community Member
2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Hmmm, only the middle seat was available at the time of booking, that's why the person chose that seat. Yet the mother and son had the window and aisle seats... I can't help but think the mother booked those two seat, and hoped no one would choose to book the middle one. She wanted to have three seats for the two of them. When that was not an option, the mother created chaos. She wanted to punish the middle-seater for thwarting her plans.

tabbygirl04152020 avatar
Tabitha
Community Member
2 months ago (edited) DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

One flight I was on, a mother had two kids, an infant and a 5 year old. She couldn’t get three seats together, so the 5 year old was in the row directly behind her. Actually the seat directly behind hers. I was also in the row behind her, next to the 5 year old. First thing she said when I sat down was to say that her 5 year old was sitting next to me, did I mind, and that she would do her best to keep an eye on her. I told her it was no problem, and I didn’t mind. Turns out, she was a nice woman, the baby was cute and slept most of the flight, and the 5 year old was quiet, incredibly well-behaved, and kept herself occupied. I mean, the kid asked me a few questions here and there, but was polite and didn’t keep interrupting me. I didn’t mind anyway. It was a very pleasant flight—-and NO ONE demanded anyone move to accommodate the woman and her 5 year old. Mom was right in front of the kid, so she was close enough to keep an eye on her, and I wasn’t bothered by sitting next to her. It was the best the airline could do, and everyone simply adjusted—-without throwing a fit. Of course, that was about ten years ago. Funny to think we were so much more civilized a mere ten years ago.

jldrumm avatar
Captain McSmoot
Community Member
2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

As for that hairsplitting person in the original comments above: flight attendant, stewardess, and steward are all still acceptable terms and are used to this day. Stop censoring people when they use correct verbiage. OP was correct; she just did not use the word that hairsplitting person would have. People use words to communicate, not to cater to your preferences.

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laura_ketteridge avatar
arthbach
Community Member
2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Hmmm, only the middle seat was available at the time of booking, that's why the person chose that seat. Yet the mother and son had the window and aisle seats... I can't help but think the mother booked those two seat, and hoped no one would choose to book the middle one. She wanted to have three seats for the two of them. When that was not an option, the mother created chaos. She wanted to punish the middle-seater for thwarting her plans.

tabbygirl04152020 avatar
Tabitha
Community Member
2 months ago (edited) DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

One flight I was on, a mother had two kids, an infant and a 5 year old. She couldn’t get three seats together, so the 5 year old was in the row directly behind her. Actually the seat directly behind hers. I was also in the row behind her, next to the 5 year old. First thing she said when I sat down was to say that her 5 year old was sitting next to me, did I mind, and that she would do her best to keep an eye on her. I told her it was no problem, and I didn’t mind. Turns out, she was a nice woman, the baby was cute and slept most of the flight, and the 5 year old was quiet, incredibly well-behaved, and kept herself occupied. I mean, the kid asked me a few questions here and there, but was polite and didn’t keep interrupting me. I didn’t mind anyway. It was a very pleasant flight—-and NO ONE demanded anyone move to accommodate the woman and her 5 year old. Mom was right in front of the kid, so she was close enough to keep an eye on her, and I wasn’t bothered by sitting next to her. It was the best the airline could do, and everyone simply adjusted—-without throwing a fit. Of course, that was about ten years ago. Funny to think we were so much more civilized a mere ten years ago.

jldrumm avatar
Captain McSmoot
Community Member
2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

As for that hairsplitting person in the original comments above: flight attendant, stewardess, and steward are all still acceptable terms and are used to this day. Stop censoring people when they use correct verbiage. OP was correct; she just did not use the word that hairsplitting person would have. People use words to communicate, not to cater to your preferences.

Load More Comments
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