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Man divides opinion after refusing to give up plane seat for mum and baby

Jake Massey

| Last updated 

Man divides opinion after refusing to give up plane seat for mum and baby

Featured Image Credit: Lev Dolgachov / Alamy Stock Photo / Horizons WWP / Alamy Stock Photo

A man has divided opinion after he refused to give up his seat at the request of a mum with a baby.


The man in question had decided to splash some extra cash to secure seats in the middle front row for him and his wife for the 10-hour flight from Europe to Asia.

He'd paid the additional fee for the leg room, as he and his missus are long types, but the plan went pear-shaped upon boarding.

"There was woman holding a baby seated in the middle seat," he recalled in the Reddit Am I The A*****e? (AITA) subreddit.

"We had booked the 2 aisles on the off chance that the middle seat may be empty but with full intention for me to switch to the middle seat if the passenger wished to sit in one of the aisles and not between us.

"This woman, before I even had a chance to put my bag in the overhead compartment, asked me 'Can I be really cheeky and ask you to switch seats with my husband?'"

The hubby was located in the second row on the left aisle of the plane and the mum said he needed to be beside her to help with the baby; however, our protagonist did not want to budge, as he wouldn't be getting the leg room he'd paid for if he swapped.

He continued: "My wife stayed quiet while I politely but firmly told her that unfortunately as his seat is in a second row, I wouldn't be moving there as I had specifically paid for the seat with extra legroom.

"She then claimed that she and her husband had paid as well but they placed him in the second row, which seemed very suspect.

"Either way I stayed firm. Then the steward came and requested me to switch with the husband on her behest and I had to tell him the same thing, making things quite awkward. She then threw daggers at me for some time. The baby started crying after a while as well."

The flight got off to a very rocky start. Credit: Andrey Bandurenko / Alamy Stock Photo
The flight got off to a very rocky start. Credit: Andrey Bandurenko / Alamy Stock Photo

Yikes, you can almost smell the awkward tension just reading that.

Thankfully, a solution was reached - but this didn't bring an end to the awkwardness.

He explained: "The steward came back and told me that there were two vacant seats in one of the other first rows and offered to move us.

"We ended up moving there but could hear this lady animatedly make comments about us to her husband from behind for sometime after that."

He went on to explain that his wife agreed that the mum's 'poor planning' wasn't their problem, but that after discussing it with his in-laws they'd said that he should've moved as the mum had a baby.

But while the dagger-throwing mum and his in-laws may have thought less of him for not giving up his seat, on the subreddit, the fella was reassured that he was not in fact 'the a*****e'.

One person commented: "You paid for them, they're yours. Even if she was telling the truth and they were somehow able to also book those seats, that's the airline's problem, not yours."

Another said: "You paid for extra leg room, and paid for that seat. You were under no obligation to switch. If she wanted to sit with her husband, she should have booked side by side seats."

A third added: "I wouldn’t have moved either. My husband and I book and pay extra so we can sit together. Other ppls seating issues are not my problem."

Topics: Travel

Jake Massey
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