How to avoid babies on planes.
How to avoid babies on planes – Japan Airlines shows passengers where infants will be sitting
Japan Airlines and All Nippon Airways offer seating plans that allow fliers to see where young children are sitting
There are other ways to ensure a smooth flight, like knowing where to position yourself to avoid turbulence
Published: 8:45am, 2 Oct, 2019
For those of us who turn right upon entering a plane, where we end up spending the next few hours of our life can be a source of stress, especially if we’re in for the long haul and sleep is a priority. Numerous factors affect the comfort of a journey, from the shortcomings of the middle seat to malodorous neighbours and those who make themselves a little too comfortable – no, clipping your toenails while in your seat is not acceptable in-flight etiquette – but many travellers are united by their hostility towards one particular type of passenger: young children.
Enter Japan Airlines’ (JAL) seat-booking system, which illustrates where passengers aged between eight days and two years old will be situated by placing a smiling baby icon on the seating plan, thus allowing others to avoid them. According to Al Jazeera, All Nippon Airways offers something similar.
The service provided by JAL found viral fame on September 24, when frequent flier Rahat Ahmed tweeted: “Thank you, @JAL_Official_jp for warnings [sic] me about where babies plan to scream and yell during a 13 hour trip. This really ought to be mandatory across the board.” The internet responded, as it is wont to do, with righteous indignation, which poured in from both sides of the aisle, prompting Ahmed to follow up with a post promoting empathy and pointing out that adults can be just as bad as babies.
Ahmed was accused of being ungenerous to parents of small kids, who not only have to deal with the reality of travelling with infants but must also withstand the withering looks of fellow fliers, although many who responded understood where he was coming from. “I think when people travel a lot, they have quite a few things they look into,” he told The New York Times, suggesting that how close a passenger was to the front or back of the aircraft and whether they were in an aisle or window seat were equally important factors in determining how pleasant a plane ride would be.