Court ruling on airline seats

Discussion in 'Canadian Trip Planning & Community Board' started by declansdad, Nov 21, 2008.

  1. declansdad

    declansdad DIS Dad #639 New Brunswick, Canada

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    2 for 1 airline seats
    This has to be one of the dumbest decison I have ever heard. How in the world will this be enforced and why should an obese person get two seats for the price of one while everyone else pays for two? What about the tall person who has no leg room? Should something be done for them?

    http://ca.news.yahoo.com/s/reuters/canada_us_obesity
     
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  3. ajschell

    ajschell Mouseketeer

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    I find this so ridiculous that I don't even know what to say.... and that is saying a lot!! :confused:
     
  4. casper_jj11

    casper_jj11 DIS Veteran

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    Actually, just as a technicality, the Supreme Court didn't rule that there is a right to two seats. The lower court did and the Supreme Court must have decided that it wasn't of national importance because it declined to hear the appeal from that decision.

    Bottom line is the decision of the lower court stands but still, I hate it when news reports misinterpret what is actually happening.
     
  5. declansdad

    declansdad DIS Dad #639 New Brunswick, Canada

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    But with the Supreme Court declining to hear the appeal, this decision will stand. It sets a terrible precedent.
     
  6. Northstar

    Northstar DIS Veteran

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    I disagree.

    I think airlines have to make reasonable accommodations for disabilities just like any other business serving the public. If a person literally cannot fit into the narrow wedge of space the airlines have decided is what the average person needs, then the airlines have to accommodate that person.

    The airlines don't charge passengers by the inch or by the pound for transportation. They charge per person, for transport from point A to point B.

    While I agree that many of us would like an extra seat for free, and it seems unfair that very large people get 2 for the price of 1, I wouldn't trade my life for theirs just to get hold of an extra seat on a flight!
     
  7. drag n' fly

    drag n' fly Bucket list alert!!...Rode the Lilly Belle and din

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    Good point!
     
  8. drag n' fly

    drag n' fly Bucket list alert!!...Rode the Lilly Belle and din

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    I am 5'9 1/2 and dh is 6'2....very good point. I should be able to request front row/special seating because of our height!
     
  9. declansdad

    declansdad DIS Dad #639 New Brunswick, Canada

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    Maybe because of this ruling they will start charging by weight. Many transportation companies do this and if they are simply providing transportation, it would be a more effective way of recovering costs.

    I'm sorry if a person doesn't fit in a seat but when you purchase the ticket you are entering in to a contract. The contract doesn't say you are entitled to any specifc form of seating but a seat is certainly implied. There are no differences except by class of seating. My son took his first flight just before his 3rd birthday. He didn't use the entire seat but we payed for all of it. Using the same argument as this ruling, he should have received a reduced rate.
     
  10. michelle1

    michelle1 DIS Veteran

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    My thought would be that because of the rise in obesity there will be many people affected by this so fares will go up to recover their losses. There will have to be some guidelines put in place as there is a big difference between 40lbs overweight and 100+ lbs overweight....not everyone can request 2 seats.
     
  11. glenpreece

    glenpreece DIS Veteran

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    my parents are both obese due to medical issues such as diabetes etc and this is actually something my mom has mentioned before. She had a hard time getting into her seat when we flew a few years back, my brother needs a belt extension too. I am of avg size but the seat belt doesn't have much left over after i buckle it. The seats and belts are riduclously small and narrow.
     
  12. blizzard

    blizzard DIS Veteran

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    Either way, someone has to pay for the extra seat. For now, the rest of us will have to pay for it in higher airfares. Nothing is free in the airline industry. Hopefully there will be some guidelines in place for who can get an extra seat. I think given the choice we all would ask for two seats.
     
  13. fivebyfive

    fivebyfive Mouseketeer

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    Here, here!

    I have a HUGE problem when a child has to pay full price for an airline seat while others are getting 2 for 1. Especially a child under the age of 3!!!
     
  14. glenpreece

    glenpreece DIS Veteran

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    what kills me is when I gt a ona flight that is over half empty and they have already cancelled another flight to "fill up" the flight and they still charge me the baggage overage fee. I mean hello there was less than 12 people on the flight.
     
  15. Northstar

    Northstar DIS Veteran

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    The airlines are also entering into a contract. And the ruling says that yes, a seat that you can fit into is implied in the contract.

    [/QUOTE]There are no differences except by class of seating. My son took his first flight just before his 3rd birthday. He didn't use the entire seat but we payed for all of it. Using the same argument as this ruling, he should have received a reduced rate.[/QUOTE]

    No, using the argument of this ruling, every person pays for one person's fare, regardless of how big that person is. No reduced rates or "oversize" rates.


    But you know, everyone seems to be worried that not-so-obese people will be claiming this second seat as a right. I seem to remember that in the case this ruling was based on, it was the airline that demanded that the person buy a second seat. The passenger didn't do anything different from you and me... just bought a ticket and showed up at the airplane on time. Or am I remembering this wrong?

    The ruling basically says that the airline can't demand that one person pay a double fare because that person is large. It doesn't really say that a large person can demand a second seat because they are not comfortable.
     
  16. happycamper83

    happycamper83 Mouseketeer

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    This is also only for those "functionally disabled by obesity". It didn't mention if these people will need documentation to indicate such, but I would assume so.
     
  17. Ourtoystory

    Ourtoystory Earning My Ears

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    A very close source to me in the airline industry;) states this will not affect seat costs as very few people who fly require the extra seat. The airline the source is from has been honouring requests for extra seats at no cost for some time because the ruling was coming for some time and for the comfort of others. It has been a very very low percentage requiring this service.

    The premise that airlines will raise prices to offset extra seat requests is based on that airlines NEED to fill every seat to make a profit and this is not so. Many things affect raises in airline prices this will not be one of them.

    This ruling was also driven by complaints of the average size consumer who did not want a person of large size intruding onto their seat.

    Just a reminder a tall person does have options on any aircraft in the bulk head and emergency exit rows. Both offer extra leg room on any aircraft configuration. I know this because my husband is 6ft 4.

    I can't speak for AC but WestJet does not cancel flights to fill up others. Aircraft is scheduled months in advanced to fly a particular route, part of their success story is they only pull aircraft from the schedule for scheduled maintenance. If WestJet owns the plane then it is flying all day on any given day. If they started cancelling legs to fill up planes it would mess with the delicate and intricate schedule that ensures those aircraft are where they need to be for it to be profitable. Only added because it was brought up in earlier.
     
  18. declansdad

    declansdad DIS Dad #639 New Brunswick, Canada

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    There are no differences except by class of seating. My son took his first flight just before his 3rd birthday. He didn't use the entire seat but we payed for all of it. Using the same argument as this ruling, he should have received a reduced rate.[/quote]

    No, using the argument of this ruling, every person pays for one person's fare, regardless of how big that person is. No reduced rates or "oversize" rates.


    But you know, everyone seems to be worried that not-so-obese people will be claiming this second seat as a right. I seem to remember that in the case this ruling was based on, it was the airline that demanded that the person buy a second seat. The passenger didn't do anything different from you and me... just bought a ticket and showed up at the airplane on time. Or am I remembering this wrong?

    The ruling basically says that the airline can't demand that one person pay a double fare because that person is large. It doesn't really say that a large person can demand a second seat because they are not comfortable.[/quote]

    Would you buy something you didn't fit into? The size of a seat on a plane is known or can be found quite easily. If a person doesn't fit, why is that the airlines problem?
     
  19. declansdad

    declansdad DIS Dad #639 New Brunswick, Canada

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    What exactly is functionally disabled by obesity?
     
  20. Csaks

    Csaks DIS Veteran

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    Probably someone who can claim to justify a handicap parking pass or a motorized scooter when all they need is a good walk from a regular spot . Flame me all you want, I could justify a pass for bad knee's and back but choose to not do it for people who really need it. I'm getting larger with age but it's my own inactivitity and laziness doing that not some other excuse.
     
  21. snickerboo

    snickerboo DIS Veteran

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    I don't agree with the decision but it might have helped me on our latest trip to WDW. When I had this happen:

    We flew AirTran but didn't pay to pre-book our seats. We got assigned all in one row B, D, E & F. We thought, 'great, they're right together'. I had to sit in B because my dh is 6'1" and 225lbs and he would sit with the kids accross the aisle. Well, the people on either side of me were together and booked seats A and C and I'm assuming they did so hoping no one would sit in B. They were both bigger people and the both put their legs into my leg space and used the arm rests on either side of me. Both of them were big enough to come into my body space of the seat, too. So, even though I'm a pretty small woman, I was squished and very uncomfortable the entire flight. With this rule, I wouldn't be.

    The problem with the ruling is that the airlines just lost a seat they could charge for and the rest of us are going to make up the difference.
     

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