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Seat Swapping, Seat Poaching and Seating Etiquette: The Definitive Thread

Seat Swapping, Seat Poaching and Seating Etiquette: The Definitive Thread

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Old Oct 11, 17, 8:52 am   -   Wikipost
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The Definitive Guide to Seat Poaching

1. Don't do it.
2. Alternatively to #1: Asking politely (and not demanding) to swap for an equal or better seat is acceptable by most (but the final decision always lays with the original seat holder)...but, be warned, some FT'ers may breathe fire at you.
3. Keep in mind that Point 2 is not seat poaching.
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Old Apr 3, 17, 2:45 pm
  #961  
 
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Attemtped seat poach on ATL-PBI last week. Was in 19 D and the person who was in 19 F was right in front of me when we boarded.

19E was an older lady (mid 60's would be my guess) and was sitting in 19F. She asked the person in 19F if he preferred the middle seat. He just chuckled and said no. She moved and then as I set my laptop bag on the seat for 19D she asked if I preferred the middle seat. She got a second small chuckle and a no.

Last edited by apodo77; Apr 4, 17 at 12:16 pm
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Old Apr 3, 17, 6:08 pm
  #962  
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She's been reading Rejection Proof. You should have negotiated with her.
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Old Apr 3, 17, 6:19 pm
  #963  
 
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Seems harsh to laugh at an old lady, even if she is trying to steal your seat.
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Old Apr 3, 17, 6:30 pm
  #964  
 
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Originally Posted by apodo77 View Post
Attemtped seat poach on ATL-PBI last week. Was in 19 D and the person who was in 19 F was right in front of me when we boarded.

19E was an older lady (mid 60's would be my guess) and was sitting in 19F. She asked the person in 19F if he preferred the middle seat. He just laughed and said no. She moved and then as I set my laptop bag on the seat for 19D she asked if I preferred the middle seat. She got a second laugh and a no.
So now anyone who asks the person next to them if they will switch seats qualifies as a SEAT POACHER?
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Old Apr 3, 17, 6:41 pm
  #965  
 
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Originally Posted by Allan38103 View Post
So now anyone who asks the person next to them if they will switch seats qualifies as a SEAT POACHER?
"19E was an older lady ... and was sitting in 19F."
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Old Apr 3, 17, 11:01 pm
  #966  
 
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Originally Posted by Zorak View Post
"19E was an older lady ... and was sitting in 19F."
Yep, I think D and F guys might have been more willing if she had sat in her assigned E seat and then asked them if they wanted to switch once they got there. Having already situated herself in the F seat, it kind of sets a bad perception from the start that she presumed others would accommodate her request of switching seats. It does not feel great to be stuck in a middle seat, but I have yet to meet anyone who genuinely prefers it over a window or aisle seat.
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Old Apr 4, 17, 7:01 am
  #967  
 
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Originally Posted by Explorer789 View Post
It does not feel great to be stuck in a middle seat, but I have yet to meet anyone who genuinely prefers it over a window or aisle seat.
They do exist; once or twice I've been in the aisle seat and someone else was in the middle with the window seat empty. Once the door was shut I figured the person would move over to the window, but no. Maybe when we get up to cruising altitude? No. So there we were. Probably didn't want to miss any of my incomparable wit and charm.
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Old Apr 4, 17, 7:04 am
  #968  
 
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Originally Posted by KevinDTW View Post
They do exist; once or twice I've been in the aisle seat and someone else was in the middle with the window seat empty. Once the door was shut I figured the person would move over to the window, but no. Maybe when we get up to cruising altitude? No. So there we were. Probably didn't want to miss any of my incomparable wit and charm.
I would probably be tempted to say something like, "it's nice that we can spread out now" when the fasten seat belt sign is turned off. Some people are rule followers and assume that they must stay in their assigned seat.
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Old Apr 4, 17, 7:08 am
  #969  
 
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Originally Posted by KevinDTW View Post
They do exist; once or twice I've been in the aisle seat and someone else was in the middle with the window seat empty. Once the door was shut I figured the person would move over to the window, but no. Maybe when we get up to cruising altitude? No. So there we were. Probably didn't want to miss any of my incomparable wit and charm.
I had that happen once, too. The passenger clinging to her middle seat was a young (twenties) woman. She sang and sang and sang at the top of her lungs the entire flight. My noise canceling headphones and the plane noises blocked me from hearing her, but I could see her joyfully singing the entire flight. Clapping, smiling, bobbing her head... No reading, sleeping or playing on a device, just joyful singing.
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Old Apr 4, 17, 7:34 am
  #970  
 
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Originally Posted by CJKatl View Post
I had that happen once, too. The passenger clinging to her middle seat was a young (twenties) woman. She sang and sang and sang at the top of her lungs the entire flight. My noise canceling headphones and the plane noises blocked me from hearing her, but I could see her joyfully singing the entire flight. Clapping, smiling, bobbing her head... No reading, sleeping or playing on a device, just joyful singing.
I'm sure it was very joyful for those around her w/o noise cancelling headphones!

Reminds me of my daughter (9) she loves to sing, and I have to reminder her to not sing in the grocery store, mall, restaurant, etc.

That leads to her singing slightly quieter, a second reminder leads to humming loudly.

I guess some people just have a song in their heart!
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Old Apr 4, 17, 7:48 am
  #971  
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Does "joyful singing" have religious connotations here?
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Old Apr 4, 17, 8:16 am
  #972  
 
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Originally Posted by MSPeconomist View Post
Does "joyful singing" have religious connotations here?
I'm not sure, but she may have been singing religious songs. I couldn't tell and really was trying to just ignore it. She also refused to put her purse under the seat in front of her. The FAs finally gave up and let her keep it on her lap. The purse may have actually been empty. It was the kind of thing you thought could get much worse so you just let it go where it was. You know, the sleeping dogs theory.
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Old Apr 4, 17, 8:38 am
  #973  
 
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Originally Posted by CJKatl View Post
I'm not sure, but she may have been singing religious songs. I couldn't tell and really was trying to just ignore it. She also refused to put her purse under the seat in front of her. The FAs finally gave up and let her keep it on her lap. The purse may have actually been empty. It was the kind of thing you thought could get much worse so you just let it go where it was. You know, the sleeping dogs theory.
Could've been a combo of one of those people who are really afraid to fly type of thing and (no offense here) some happy religious thoughts/whatever to keep their mind occupied.

I do recall one of my lovely 'prop job' flights from ALB to EWR where they had to stop the right engine because it kept revving (about 20 minutes from landing), and there were several people who put their hands in the air and you could hear the praying start whilst we had a rather rough (but safe) landing. Followed by many joyful "hallelujah's" and clapping/etc. (I was mostly covered in sweat).

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Old Apr 4, 17, 8:43 am
  #974  
 
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Originally Posted by hurnik View Post
Could've been a combo of one of those people who are really afraid to fly type of thing and (no offense here) some happy religious thoughts/whatever to keep their mind occupied.

I do recall one of my lovely 'prop job' flights from ALB to EWR where they had to stop the right engine because it kept revving (about 20 minutes from landing), and there were several people who put their hands in the air and you could hear the praying start whilst we had a rather rough (but safe) landing. Followed by many joyful "hallelujah's" and clapping/etc. (I was mostly covered in sweat).

I'd have been covered in Jack Daniels due to my drinking problem

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Old Apr 4, 17, 10:42 am
  #975  
 
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Originally Posted by zitsky View Post
Seems harsh to laugh at an old lady, even if she is trying to steal your seat.


I had the exact same situation happen to me a few years ago. A lady in the middle seat asked me if I "prefer the middle seat." Although the wording seems innocent enough, it was not asked in a very nice tone and I am sure it was a similar situation. There was a definite attitude and expectation that I would switch with her. I replied, "if I preferred the middle seat, given that middle seats are always the last seats available, don't you think I would have chosen the middle seat to begin with?" We didn't speak the rest of the flight which was fine with me. She also was the type that preferred to crawl over the guy in the aisle seat rather than politely asking him to get up so she could use the lav.
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