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O/Y - Flying Follies with Spoiled Kids

2Tired4Drama's picture

I recently had a situation happen on BOTH legs of my round-trip flights, so thought I would seek input from those more "mature" folks here on the adult skids forum!

By way of background, I purchased a round-trip flight (3-hour non-stop) and specifically paid extra for a selected window seat. I had plans to take some photos out the windows.

The airplane configuration was three seats on each side of a center aisle.

Flight 1: I proceed to my row and as I approach it I can see a woman on the aisle seat, with two small kids in the seats next to her. I look up and double-check my row/seat number to make sure I am at the right place and BEFORE I CAN EVEN OPEN MY MOUTH to ask her if she is in the right row, she nastily says to me, "If these are one of your seats, then you'll have to sit elsewhere."

The flight attendant comes up and I question/say it appears my seat is occupied? He says, "Yes, we try to keep mothers and kids together. But you can sit over here," and he points farther back in the plane to a middle seat. I was good natured about it but told him that wasn't going to work since I paid extra money for a window seat. Luckily, the flight wasn't too booked and he was able to get me another window seat.

Flight 2: I am sitting in my window seat and a family of six comes down the aisle. It is a mom, dad and four kids who range in age from about 8 to 14 or so. None of the kids appeared to have special needs of any kind. Three of the kids filled the row across the aisle and mom and one other kid sat next to me. Dad was behind us.

However, when the boy next to me (about 10) saw he would have to sit in the middle he began to pout that he wanted to sit by a window like the other sibling. You guessed it, the next thing I know the father approaches me and asks if I would mind giving my seat to his son. I told him, sorry but I paid for this window seat.

Kid keeps pouting and I hear lots of conversation behind and around me, but I ignore it. After about five minutes, the father comes to me once again and said he's managed to move THREE other people around so he can get me a window seat farther back. He was very polite about it, but he was loud enough in his plea to "please let my family sit together" that I felt obligated to move all my stuff and change seats. Again, I did so in a humorous way but I gotta tell you ...

What they hell gives with these ENTITLED kids and parents? I've been flying since I was six years old, and NEVER would my parents have ever inconvenienced anyone just because I was pouting over where my seat was.

Has anyone else had similar situations when flying?

DPW's picture

I pay for a preferred seat when I fly too. This has happened to be twice before. The last time, in December, the flight attendant looked at my ticket when I boarded and said for me to wait. She realized that someone was in my seat and did her job of removing them and making them sit where they were assigned. That's their job. If I was you, I would complain to the airline.

sandye21's picture

I've had similar experiences on planes and I agree - what gives a family priority over a person who paid for the seat? I could go on and on about screaming babies, kids kicking the back of the seat, running around on the plane, etc. Then the defensive parents! There was a lady who was kicked off of a plane just the other day then got fired from her job but not too many specifics of what caused it. I think she cussed. They should have a closed off section of the plane for people with small kids and babies - bet they wouldn't like it when THEY had to listen to it on a 10 hour flight. Sorry to get on my soapbox.

sandye21's picture

Thanks for the info. There's no need to scream or get rude with attendant. Usually attendants can help. I was on a flight back from Dublin to the U.S. The plane was not full and there was plenty of room, but a couple with two small kids under 4, decided to take over whatever room there was on the plane. They took over two complete middle rows of 4 seats each plus two of the side rows. The kids were running all over the place. I was really exhausted and asked if I could lay down in one of the rows they had vacated so I could sleep. They did not return to seats but became irate with me when I moved over to lie down, calling me all sorts of names. Finally some of the other passengers complained to the attendant and she asked that they control their kids.

There have been other trips though where there were babies who cried most of the flight but the parents tried their best to attend to them. So I agree with other posters who say it is all about attitude.

Merrywey's picture

I would not have moved either. I need a window seat, I get really air sick and have found that seat to be the least likely to induce a barf feast. I recently had a similar situation and stood my ground when even the steward tried to guilt me into moving. Nope, I paid for my seat and I could not care less what other passengers think of me.

SacrificialLamb's picture

I used to travel for work a lot. Was asked by parents to move for the sake of their children. I told them that like me, they could have make arrangements for seating ahead of time, their failure to plan did not create an emergency for me. I did move if the seat was better than what I had, but had no problem telling them no. I am very claustrophobic and need to sit on an aisle.

I couldn't believe the gumption of some parents, in particular two parents who let their toddler children watch movies on portable DVD players without headphones, very loudly. When I asked why they did not use headphones so they did not disturb the other passengers, I was told their little snowflakes did not like headphones. That one got fixed after a discussion with the flight attendants. And my flight to Amsterdam last year, where the parents behind me sang songs with their daughter all night long because she liked the songs. Forget anyone else trying to sleep.

But I have seen some fantastic parenting examples too, including a long trip back from Africa. A parent all by herself with a boy who looked to be in his terrible 2's. I cringed when I saw them. He did not make a sound, because that mother took care of him the entire flight, walking him, being a parent.

Every time DH and go on a long trip, the air travel makes me say "never again". But unfortunately it has to be done to get anywhere.

notasm3's picture

Now my DH is who is always the first person to try to help anybody would probably be the first to jump up to give up his seat. Until I remind him that he is my personal care attendant and in the event of an emergency I truly would need his assistance. And then he realizes that he is not free to move.

ndc's picture

I've been on the wrong end of your experience. I flew with SO and his 2 kids a couple months ago on Southwest, which doesn't have assigned seating. I had gone online to check in exactly 24 hours ahead of time so we had excellent boarding positions (and also could have gotten advanced boarding for families with small children), but the gate was moved, we missed the announcement, sat at the wrong gate and ended up almost missing the flight. So we were the last ones to board and it was totally our own fault. There were not two seats together left anywhere on the plane. The flight attendants asked people to move for us, and people did. SO ended up sitting with both kids and I sat elsewhere in the plane (yay me!). We felt bad about it, but the people who would have gotten stuck with a 2 and 4 year old sitting alone had no one moved would have felt even worse. Sometimes these situations are inevitable. I try to be flexible when I can. I'm young, can move easily and never pay extra for a special seat, so it's not a big deal for me.

Acratopotes's picture

You are a good person, I would've told them both times to eff off, if I paid for that seat it's mine and if I have to give it up, they will accommodate me in first class with a window seat }:)