Another Passenger Rightfully Denies An Unwanted Seat Change

by Anthony Losanno
Seat Swap AF

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Last week, I wrote about a passenger who rightfully declined to give up her window seat so that a mother and her children could sit together. Now, another traveler shared on TikTok her recent experience and her refusal to give up her business class seat so that a family could sit together.


That’s a no from me dawg 🤣 would you have given up your seat? Also they ended up finding a solution so no, i am not a terrible human being. Also the child was like 13.

♬ original sound – Sunshynelove21

Dr. Sabra (@lifewithdrsabra) is a Seattle-based dermatologist. She was recently flying to Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport (CDG) and was seated in 1A on a Boeing 787-9. She refers to it as First Class, but it’s actually Business Class.

AF Boeing 787-9

The family requested that she move to row 8 so that their 13-year-old child could sit near them. Seat 1A is a single seat, so the teen would not have been next to a parent anyway.

The clip of Brian and Stewie flying to Paris and asked to switch seats was pointed out by several commenters and came to mind for me as well.

Maybe the child would have been closer, but they would not have been sitting together and I would have also denied the request. Row one on many planes has larger footwells in Business Class. I always prefer the bulkhead and even more when I know I’ll have room for my feet.

Anthony’s Take: I find it’s simple to choose seats while booking. If the plane is full and your desired seat is not available, then either choose another or book another flight. Other passengers should not be made to feel guilty or have a worse experience so that they can be accommodating.

(H/T: View from the Wing.)

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Caroline August 3, 2023 - 2:12 pm

Awesome she stayed strong. The family knew when they booked the flight that their child would be in a different part of the plane.
I once moved to accommodate a tall man and was promised a $200 flight voucher-they found an extra seat and told me I couldn’t have the voucher so I ended up in a cram seat!!!
This is something that you have to decide on when it happens and if they promise you something get it first before you make any change, because the airlines are becoming very deceptive just to get away.

Patrick August 3, 2023 - 2:20 pm

I love it and would have done the same. The kid was probably thankful they didn’t have to sit with the “family”. And you are exactly right, they should have booked those seats together when they purchased the tickets, that is if they purchased the tickets. Could have been buddy passes that are regularly upgraded when seats are available. If they couldn’t then they should have found another flight where they could. And if they were worried about the kid being alone, then one of them should have changed and taken their seat and put the kid with the other family member(s).

Kevin August 3, 2023 - 2:34 pm

It’s interesting that these stories always seem to flow toward a significant benefit for the person making a request, at the expense of the targeted passenger. If they truly want to sit together, the solution is simple and obvious: Go to the back of the plane and find a group of seats that are together and ask those passengers if they would be willing to trade for a business class seat so the family can be together.

THill August 3, 2023 - 3:11 pm

Amen! Problem solved!

PeacefulAntiMasker August 3, 2023 - 3:15 pm

When someone asks me to move I tell them give me $500 cash. Lol walk away.

Varda Sauer August 3, 2023 - 5:22 pm

No one should be asked to change seats, ever!! You sit where you book – so book carefully!!

J R August 3, 2023 - 5:32 pm

Don’t you get the feeling that these families go through life asking people to accomidate them?

Alex Ashton August 3, 2023 - 6:35 pm

Unless a child is travelling for life-saving medical treatment, no child ever NEEDS to fly ANYWHERE. It is up to parents to arrange whatever accommodation a child may require, not to ask other travelers to accommodate them at every turn. “Oh, dear, can’t you see I have A CHILD with me????” Well DUH, the child is with you because YOU chose for that to happen. It’s not my fault and no, I’m not going enable your poor decision by inconveniencing myself.

Way to Effing GO Award to this traveler!

Billy J August 4, 2023 - 9:48 am

I think you guys are all a little extreme here. The woman in 1A was simply asked. And she said NO – no biggie. But maybe she wouldn’t care, as long as she was still in business class (according to the seat map, row 8 is still in J). So what’s the harm in asking (or being asked)?

randy August 4, 2023 - 4:24 pm

Exactly right. I agree entirely with your comment. I’m guessing all/many/most of these comments are from people without kids. It’s hard enough to take a family trip with (young kids)…people don’t have to be jerks about it.

Dee More August 23, 2023 - 3:59 pm

I agree that if you aren’t happy with your seat selection at booking you should book a different flight. However, On my last international trip both my outbound and inbound transatlantic legs were disrupted and I was involuntarily rebooked on completely different flights (with my wife and I still in business class) with in widely separated seats. We had no choice because there were no seats together and we were happy just to get going on a reasonably similar time schedule. Regardless of the reason, wether during seat selection at booking time or a last minute flight change you can either accept the seats or rebook (again) or, alternatively, take your chances that somebody will voluntarily switch with you if you ask very politely. If they say “yes” that is great but if they say “no”, with or without an explanation, then live with it or try another person without complaint or snide remarks. In my case we just accepted the seats on the first flight and on the second asked someone to switch, which they readily agreed to. In no case was anyone obligated, in my opinion, to help you out nor are they obligated to explain why not.


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