Should Fat People Pay Extra When They Fly?

If you’re planning to book a flight with Air France next month you better watch your weight. Starting from the 1st of April 2010, people who are too big to squeeze into their seats will have to pay for two seats instead – calling it ‘Fat Tax’.

This is a sensitive subject around the world, and airline companies have been sued during the past few years for discrimination against clinically obese customers, simply because they forced them to pay extra for the use of two seats.

Are they doing the right thing by asking heavy people to pay more?

Some people think it’s discriminating and outrageous, and that people shouldn’t be treated any different because of their size. While others claim it’s not fair if they don’t have to pay extra as it’s more expensive to fly heavy people, and shouldn’t you should pay for as many seats as you use?

Also isn’t it strange how if we bring more than 20kgs of check-in luggage we are forced to pay so much for that excess baggage – but someone who weighs 50-100kgs more than the average person doesn’t have to pay more…

Maybe they should start setting their prices based on your weight, so skinny people pay for half a seat instead :p

I mean, nobody can argue that heavy people are more expensive to fly, and it makes sense that the aircraft needs to use more fuel to stay up in the air when flying with a heavier load.

Do you want to give away half of your seat and armrest because somebody you don’t know doesn’t fit in their own chair, and prefers to take up half of yours than pay for another one himself?

Isn’t that a bit rude and egoistic?

Shouldn’t the customers that are flying take some responsibility as well?

If you already know you don’t fit into a normal-sized plane seat, then wouldn’t you wonder what is going to happen? You’d obviously squash the person next to you, or half stand up during the whole flight, which you probably wouldn’t want to do for a long flight.

If you don’t know if you’d fit into their seats, and you know you’re ‘of the larger size’, wouldn’t you make sure to check how wide the seats are?

Why do we have to tiptoe around obese people and pretend that they’re of a normal size, when it is an obvious problem? And which is also something most of them have the ability to change simply by eating less and doing a bit of exercise. We need to be able to discuss this to find a good resolution for all of us.

So what are your thoughts about this?

Are you willing to share you seat with a stranger, or would you prefer it if they would get honest with themselves and buy the right amount of space their body needs?

28 Responses to Should Fat People Pay Extra When They Fly?

  1. ZW January 27, 2010 at 11:17 pm #

    oh yeah, I’ve seen that on the news. Very nice. :/
    to be honest, I don’t know who is worse. them or ryanair… :(

    I think it’s a disgrace. Fat people have flown for decades. Why should they pay more now?

    • Sofia January 28, 2010 at 3:21 pm #

      That is true, but looking from the airlines perspective, they’re giving a seat away for free that someone else could have bought if this person sitting in the seat next to him would have fitted the one he payed for.

      And as we know airline companies are very creative in finding new ways of getting that extra cash, whether it’s someones BMI or a toilet fee that brings the money…

      Thanks for you opinion!

  2. ZW January 28, 2010 at 12:17 am #

    oh yeah, I’ve seen that on the news. Very nice. :/
    to be honest, I don’t know who is worse. them or ryanair… :(

    I think it’s a disgrace. Fat people have flown for decades. Why should they pay more now?

    • Sofia January 28, 2010 at 4:21 pm #

      That is true, but looking from the airlines perspective, they’re giving a seat away for free that someone else could have bought if this person sitting in the seat next to him would have fitted the one he payed for.

      And as we know airline companies are very creative in finding new ways of getting that extra cash, whether it’s someones BMI or a toilet fee that brings the money…

      Thanks for you opinion!

  3. Chris January 28, 2010 at 1:01 pm #

    There is nothing worse than being squished into a seat because the person next you to is encroaching on yours. Whether it a plane, bus or car nobody can deny its annoying, especially on long trips.

    Should these people pay more for an extra seat or just be booked into 2 seats for the price of one. Ask the airline and hell yes they want the money for an extra ticket. Ask the passenger and they just want to be treated like everybody else.

    Personally I couldn’t get on a plane knowing I’m going to squish the poor bastard next to me.

    • Sofia January 28, 2010 at 3:25 pm #

      Haha you’re right, the only thing that could compete with that is having a 7-year old kid in the seat behind you kicking his feet in your back…!

      thanks for the comment chris!

  4. Chris January 28, 2010 at 2:01 pm #

    There is nothing worse than being squished into a seat because the person next you to is encroaching on yours. Whether it a plane, bus or car nobody can deny its annoying, especially on long trips.

    Should these people pay more for an extra seat or just be booked into 2 seats for the price of one. Ask the airline and hell yes they want the money for an extra ticket. Ask the passenger and they just want to be treated like everybody else.

    Personally I couldn’t get on a plane knowing I’m going to squish the poor bastard next to me.

    • Sofia January 28, 2010 at 4:25 pm #

      Haha you’re right, the only thing that could compete with that is having a 7-year old kid in the seat behind you kicking his feet in your back…!

      thanks for the comment chris!

  5. Anil January 28, 2010 at 9:58 pm #

    You’re paying for the seat so if you can’t fit in just one you should have to pay for two. As for the guy in that picture, it’s a safety hazard (blocking the aisle, he couldn’t buckle up) and should not have been allowed to fly.

    • admin February 1, 2010 at 9:14 am #

      I can’t do anything but agree, although it’s quite sad. It’s simply not safe..

  6. Anil January 28, 2010 at 10:58 pm #

    You’re paying for the seat so if you can’t fit in just one you should have to pay for two. As for the guy in that picture, it’s a safety hazard (blocking the aisle, he couldn’t buckle up) and should not have been allowed to fly.

    • admin February 1, 2010 at 10:14 am #

      I can’t do anything but agree, although it’s quite sad. It’s simply not safe..

  7. Hugh February 1, 2010 at 2:46 pm #

    This is the first I’ve heard of an airline charging for fat people. I couldn’t agree more. Your comment about tip-toeing around fat people is spot on! I don’t know why we pretend that fat people aren’t fat (and not just on airplanes). Obesity is something that each person can control. It is a choice. These huge people should be embarrassed that they can’t fit in a normal seat.

    In my opinion, we need more of these “fat taxes” in all areas of life, so fat people will be motivated to change. Here in the U.S. especially, overweight has become the norm. That has to stop. People need to take responsibility for themselves.
    .-= Hugh´s last blog ..Pass (On) The Salt =-.

    • Sofia February 1, 2010 at 8:07 pm #

      hi hugh! I can’t even imagine what it’s like in the us, but you are starting to see more of the obesity here in europe as well. It seems like we have to adapt to them rather than the opposite.
      Do you think that they would have the guts to do the same thing in america?

  8. Hugh February 1, 2010 at 3:46 pm #

    This is the first I’ve heard of an airline charging for fat people. I couldn’t agree more. Your comment about tip-toeing around fat people is spot on! I don’t know why we pretend that fat people aren’t fat (and not just on airplanes). Obesity is something that each person can control. It is a choice. These huge people should be embarrassed that they can’t fit in a normal seat.

    In my opinion, we need more of these “fat taxes” in all areas of life, so fat people will be motivated to change. Here in the U.S. especially, overweight has become the norm. That has to stop. People need to take responsibility for themselves.
    .-= Hugh´s last blog ..Pass (On) The Salt =-.

    • Sofia February 1, 2010 at 9:07 pm #

      hi hugh! I can’t even imagine what it’s like in the us, but you are starting to see more of the obesity here in europe as well. It seems like we have to adapt to them rather than the opposite.
      Do you think that they would have the guts to do the same thing in america?

  9. Akila February 24, 2010 at 11:12 am #

    It's interesting that Air France is the first to do this because the French aren't known for having a huge obesity problem.

    I think the whole thing is kind of a scam — just another way for the airlines to nickel and dime people. I hate being squished in my seat next to someone large, but, at the same time, even if they charge this “fat tax,” I have a feeling that I am going to be squished next to a larger person but the person will just pay a bit more. I sincerely doubt that the airline is going to give a larger person two seats. Perhaps I am just being cynical, though.

  10. As We Travel February 25, 2010 at 7:29 am #

    Hey Akila, yeah I also get the feeling they are just trying to make a bit more money – I have never had to experience sitting next to someone who was THAT big but well I can still imagine how uncomfortable it would be – you would think America would be the first to do something like this but hasn't the US tried to *fix* the problem simply by making their seats bigger?

  11. Ser61391 August 2, 2010 at 4:56 pm #

    why can't airlines just make special seats called “extra room” seats and charge a little extra. That way a larger sized person can just purchase these seats. This will most likely not embarrass that person and keep the people next to them comfortable.

  12. A Guest September 11, 2010 at 8:14 pm #

    I’m a big gentleman and I agree that people should get what they pay for.

    For example, when I buy a suit, and twice as much cloth is needed for me as for my cubical mate, OBVIOUSLY the store has to charge me more. This is simple business. If I do twice as much work for a customer, I can’t go to my boss and say we’ll charge him as much as another contract needing only half the work. I’d get laughed out of a job.

    Now, when it comes to flying the thin fellow next to me has one thing in common with me. We’re both paying for a seat. He has every right to fly in reasonable comfort for his fare as do I. If a seat for a gent of my size is plus X dollars, don’t worry about offending me because when I’m on a trip I need to arrive without a funny hip. I need to be alert and ready to work.

    The same as the next guy.

    Now, if someone hollers that thinnies getting charged less, well of course they are. It’s business. They get charged less for business suits too and no-one is complaining about that! And who knows, it may be a profitable feature for airlines to offer premium seating.

    Of course, it’s the tall people who shall continue to suffer. They always end up with their size thirteen feet in the aisles.

    • FATPEOPLESUICIDENOW September 11, 2010 at 10:18 pm #

      WHY DONT YOU JUST DIET AND EXCERSISE YOU LAZY UGLY FATASS

  13. Dss September 11, 2010 at 10:14 pm #

    Fuck the fatties

    • logical December 12, 2010 at 6:29 pm #

      You must be kidding… In the same way of thinking, Fuck the uglys, fusck the tall gyus, fuck the small gyus… Get your mind working a bit more… It’s DISCRIMINATION!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  14. Fatpeopleneeddeath September 11, 2010 at 10:16 pm #

    Helll yeah dude they should pay more because it is entirely their fault in 99% of cases. FAT PEOPLE ARE NOT PEOPLE THEY ARE SCUM AND ARE HIDEOUS AND DISGUSTING. ALL YOU NEED TO DO IS FUCKING GET ON A BIKE AND DONT EAT AT MICKEY DS EVERY DAY YOU FUCKING CUNTS

  15. luciddream October 13, 2010 at 6:22 pm #

    If there has to be a charge for checked luggage then there needs to be a charge for weight. Anyone below that set weight should get a discount. Fat people should be charged more in general because they use up more resources. A general fat tax should be instituted to discourage people from being fat because it is so unhealthy.

  16. Anita August 14, 2012 at 12:13 pm #

    If everyone on on an airbus a380 weight 2kg more on a flight from Sydney to London then it will cost an extra $500 in fuel. If this fight does 3 return trip a day for a year then it will cost the airline and extra $1 million dollars

  17. Durant Imboden August 14, 2012 at 3:49 pm #

    If the issue is seating space (as opposed to fuel costs), maybe the airlines should just replace individual seats with bench seats and assign seat numbers according to breadth at the hip so that everyone would fit into the plane comfortably. Ollie Obese + Amy Anorexic + Charlie Child would likely take up the same amount of bench space as Al Average + Alexandra Average + Arnie Average.

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Tweets that mention Should Fat People Pay Extra When They Fly? – As We Travel – Around The World Travel Blog -- Topsy.com - November 27, 2010

    [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Antoine Leporc and As We Travel, RTW Travel Guide. RTW Travel Guide said: Should Fat People Pay Extra When They Fly? http://su.pr/16CiHq #rtw #rtwsoon #lp #travel #weight [...]