After Gary from View from the Wing wrote about the United flight that was diverted after a passenger was restricted by another passenger from reclining her seat… I decided to share my opinion. Some of you might consider it selfish, others of you may be in agreement.
My philosophy is that if I pay for a seat and that seat has reclining capabilities, then I will most definitely use it. Back in June, I was on a BA flight from Cairo to London, the lady sitting behind me woke me up and asked me to bring my seat forward because it was ‘bothering‘ her… I politely refused.
I closed my eyes and attempted to fall sleep again. The lady behind me called the flight attendant and expressed her concerns. The flight attendant said that I had the ability to recline my seat because I had paid for that seat.
The lady woke me up a second time and asked me again… I kindly refused. However, during the meal service, I did bring my seat forward to make her life easier. It’s also just proper etiquette. On Qantas they make you bring your seat forward during the meal services.
If the lady wanted more convenience due to her weight or physical impairments, she should have purchased an economy plus seat or premium cabin services. The burden should not fall on me for her personal problems.
I almost always recline my seat as soon as we are airborne and the cabin crew begins to move around. Even if I don’t sleep, my seat is reclined for my personal convenience.