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Tall man asks: 'AITA for not letting the passenger in front of me recline their seat?'

Tall man asks: 'AITA for not letting the passenger in front of me recline their seat?'

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After a confrontation on a flight, one man came to Reddit to see if he had actually misbehaved or not:

'AITA (Am I the A-hole) for not letting the passenger in front of me recline their seat on a flight?'

pooopies1 writes:

I (25M) am around 6'5 or 196 cm, but my legs are long. Normally I purchase economy plane seats because I have no issue being uncomfortable for a while, especially for shorter flights.

I should mention that I take care to never intrude on other people's space around me, although occasionally with another tall person with wide shoulders it can be tight.

Last week, I was on a 4-hour international flight with my knees crammed into the seat in front of me. The passenger directly in front of me tried to recline, but realized that my knees were preventing her from doing so.

Ouch! For both of them!

She turned around, gave me a dirty look, and attempted to recline again with more force. I was a little annoyed, but apologized and told her I could not move my legs out of the way without encroaching on the spaces beside me (i.e., moving my legs to the side into other people's spaces, freeing up space for her).

She accused me of doing this on purpose just because I wanted more room for myself, calling me an a-hole and saying that if I could not fit into a normal economy plane seat then I should pay extra for an emergency exit seat so that people around me can have more free space.

Is that too strong of a reaction?

If I'm honest, I feel that people who recline their seats in economy are annoying and inconsiderate, so I didn't exactly bend over backwards to accommodate for her. For more context, no, I did not check to see if this flight in particular had extra emergency exit seats. Like I said, usually I do not feel the need.

I do not often run into issues with seats beside me, although this issue with people in front of me not being able to recline has occurred before, though not always, and has earned me some dirty looks from those in front of me in the past.

So, am I the a-hole? Should I pay extra for seats with more leg room so that people in front of me can recline even though this is not always a problem?

What did Reddit have to say about this?

They were not in total harmony on this one, and the rulings were all over the board...

gytherin shares:

YTA (You're the a-hole). You know the issue occurs. Seats are made to recline and people are allowed to recline them, otherwise why have the recline feature at all?

People might have been traveling for ten or fifteen hours already and need to sleep. They may have arthritis or other serious back pain. Not all injuries are visible. You're the inconsiderate one. Let people use the features they've paid for, and pay for the extra leg room that you require.

Snoo-74562 comments:

NTA (Not the a-hole) - I'm a big guy and it's a common problem. They squeezed every inch out of those aircraft and it's uncomfortable. She should have been more understanding of reality. Maybe you could have gotten an isle seat but you paid for your seat as well and are entitled to your space.

BastardsCryinInnit says:

NAH (No a-holes here). But reclining seats is a feature, and the passenger in front has every 'right' to do that. Yes, tall travelers do get the short end of the stick here. The airlines are the ar$eholes.

'I feel that people who recline their seats in economy are annoying and inconsiderate, so I didn't exactly bend over backwards to accommodate for her.'

This is so entitled regardless of your height. It is a literal feature of seats in legacy carriers. They spend millions in R&D doing their seat designs, yes even economy seats, and everyone should be able to use the function of all of the seat without being judged. Be less judgemental.

DrNogoodNewman responds:

The lady in front wasn’t an AH for trying to recline her seat, but she WAS an AH for being rude with the OP when she realized she couldn’t recline.

But YouSayWotNow agrees with BastardsCryinInnit:

'I feel that people who recline their seats in economy are annoying and inconsiderate, so I didn't exactly bend over backwards to accommodate for her.'

I thought not the AH until I read this^ and then it became YTA (you're the a-hole). This is part of what everyone pays for in their ticket. They are not AHs for wishing to avail of something that is part of normal seat functionality.

My husband is 6'6' and all of that extra height is in his legs but we don't blame other passengers for the lack of legroom in economy, that's down to the airlines. We ask with respect and politeness if they would be willing to sacrifice use of their reclining seat so he is able to fit into the space. And are grateful if they do.

But we also look to minimise this issue coming up by paying extra for emergency aisle or premium economy seats with extra legroom. The lack of legroom for tall passengers sucks but it's not the other passengers' faults either. YTA.

So, what do you think?

Clearly the airlines are the big a-holes, but who is in the right as far as the recline wars go? Sound off in the comments!

Sources: Reddit
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