When John, an 18-year-old, was traveling to his home country, he found himself on a long connecting flight with an overweight man who was taking up a significant amount of his seat, making John’s already uncomfortable seat even more unbearable. Here is what he had to say:
A Shared Seat
When he spoke to the flight attendant about the issue, she informed him that the seat had been paid for by the obese man, and the flight was full, leaving John feeling frustrated and helpless. He questioned how his seat could still be considered available if it was being used for someone else’s body, especially since this wasn’t an American airline, which doesn’t overbook flights.
Threatened to Kick Him Off!
As John expressed his frustration, he also made comments about the airline’s decline in quality over the years, which the flight attendant deemed as rude and led her to threaten to kick him off the plane. However, she reassured him that he would be compensated for the trouble since he wasn’t traveling for vacation.
Was He in the Wrong?
The obese man then called John a fatphobic man as he had commented on his ‘fat rolls’, and other passengers gave him the stink eye, making him feel like a bad person for speaking up about the issue. He felt like he was paying for the lack of discipline of another person and the airline’s faulty booking system.
A Temporary Ban!
After the flight, John received a letter of complaint from the airline, stating that he had been rude to other passengers and staff, and that he faced temporary ban consequences. However, John appealed the complaint, and the consequences were removed less than an hour later, allowing him to travel the next day.
A Quick Resolution
Despite the quick appeal and resolution, John was left wondering if he was the jerk for making comments that offended both the obese man and the airline staff. He knew that he was frustrated and uncomfortable, but he also didn’t want to cause harm to others or be seen as a rude person.
He Had the Right to Speak Up
In the end, John realized that he had the right to speak up about his discomfort and that it was up to the airline to ensure that all passengers were comfortable and safe during the flight. He also learned that it’s important to be mindful of how his words and actions might affect others and to always strive to be respectful and considerate, even in challenging situations.
Straight to the Internet
He wasn’t sure if he was in the wrong so he turned to the internet for advice. He posted on a popular non-biased forum and explained his problematic situation.
The Internet Responded
This commenter wrote, “Is it common in America for this to happen? I’ve only flown in and out of the US once, and didn’t experience it, but in all my other travelling mainly throughout Europe, but also Mexico, Australia & India, I’ve never heard of a flight being overbooked.”
More Internet Comments
Another person commented, “He would have likely gotten a very different response had he quietly approached a flight attendant to explain the situation and politely ask for a resolution. I’ve been in a situation where someone was taking up part of my seat as well, and it’s not a fun way to fly, BUT I handled it differently, and received a refund on my flight.”
The Final Comment
This last commenter posted this opinion, “If you can’t fit in a seat then you need to buy an extra. People take advantage of others being nice about it. If I don’t have access to all of my seat I shouldn’t have to pay for all of my seat. It’s not fat phobic to take issue with a man’s fat rolls pressing into you for hours.”
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Images are for illustrative purposes only