Flight attendant explains why you aren't allowed to move seats – even if there are others free | The Sun

FLIGHT attendants have explained why passengers aren't allowed to move seats, even if there are empty ones available on the plane.

People often eye up better seating options while boarding their flights, with the hope of moving to a more comfortable chair after take off.

However, they often aren't allowed to do that, even if no one is sitting in the empty spaces.

In a thread on Reddit, a passenger asked why that was the case.

Several cabin crew members responded and explained that passengers moving can lead to complaints from others who have paid to sit in certain seats.

The passenger asked: "I’m very tall and ask if I can sit in the emergency exit row if it’s empty.

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"Sometimes flight attendants are fine with it and sometimes they say no way because I didn’t pay. Is this a rule or just the mood they're in?"

One flight said: "The seats are considered an upgrade and there is an additional charge.

"I don't allow passengers to move there because all it takes is for one person to write in or complain about it and none of you are worth my job."

Another wrote: "I always say no when asked, not because I care at all about the airline making any extra money, but because the other people in the extra legroom seats have paid and it’s not fair to them."

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A third added: "Curious if you think you should be able to move to empty first class seats too?"

It can also be dangerous for passengers to move seats before the plane takes off, especially if they don't notify the flight attendants.

One cabin crew member explained to Sun Online Travel, why it can be a safety concern.

They said: "You should tell us if you are swapping seats before take off.

"There are things like weight distribution for us to consider and moving around the plane can be dangerous at the start of the flight, so it's always best to check with your cabin crew if it's okay first.

"We might tell you that you have to wait until we're in the air, once we're cruising it doesn't really matter where you sit, but for take off, it's best to have you in the seat you were allocated."

This was backed up by a pilot, who said that it could even cause a fatal mistake to switch seats before the plane has set off.

Magnar Nordal explained on a Quora forum: “If the [systems are] set wrong, then the aircraft may crash at take-off.

“Four passengers seated themselves forward from their assigned seats before take-off.

“My first officer was flying, and he experienced problems when he rotated the aircraft: It was very heavy.

“This was a very critical situation, because the runway was very short, and we would not have been able to stop.”

Passengers frequently expect others to switch seats, especially if they haven't booked specific places and are separated from their friends and family.

For any parents who find themselves in this situation – a member of cabin crew has this advice… try and sort the issue before you board.

Allie Malis, a representative at the Association of Professional Flight attendants told 7news.com.au: “It puts a lot of pressure on us to ask favours of passengers to switch around and it’s a very time-sensitive part of flight when we’re boarding."

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Another passenger was slammed for not giving up an empty seat after she was forced to fly by herself when her son tested positive for Covid.

Meanwhile ex-cabin crew member Beth Windsor has revealed that the emergency exit is the best place to sit on a plane.

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