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Useful list of things to say when asked to switch seats

Useful list of things to say when asked to switch seats

Old Mar 26, 09, 7:36 pm
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Expat in SIN
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I was on a SU flight this summer and had a pretty interesting situation.

A young lady (in her 20's) 1 row behind me asked to switch seats so that she could sit with her mother. I initially agreed.

However, my carry on was to big for the overhead bin and would not fit under the seat (a common problem on Tu-154 aircraft). So, I asked the FA for help. We decided that once everyone had boarded, if the seat next me was open, I could just put my suitcase there.

So, I spent the next 10min just standing and waiting for all to board. All this time the young woman kept bugging me about switching seats!!

Anyways, the aircraft was not full, so everything worked out. However, I was ready to tell the woman to piiss off!

Sorry hun, my problems come before yours!
bsb21 is offline  
Old Mar 27, 09, 12:08 am
Join Date: Mar 2009
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Talking Haha

(void this post if you travel like 5 days a week and you get asked all the time and you respond with a nice "no" because you get asked so often.)

Haha I mean I've read some funny responses, but ... is with you guys. Maby it's cause I don't travel much, but what is up with you guys and your seats. I read one post, the poster asked to switch seats with a lady to sit with his sister, she said no, then someone else offered to switch with him. I mean she must feel like an ........ That guy wasn't even asked, and he did the nice thing. Unless you have a good reason, like need space to work or you're real tall, etc.. just be nice. They probably have a good reason for switching.

Haha if you guys ever need to switch seats I hope that person gives you a smart remark in a professional tone and makes you look stupid. So you can then walk back to your seat with the 10 surrounding people looking at you like you just got owned.

And for you people who ask for money.. wow.. if you're willing to move, freakin move man. If I jokingly said give me $500 and it's yours, and he pulled out his wallet, I'd be like "Keep it man I was just joking.. have a good flight buddy."

Money hungry savages obssessed with your seats haha
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Old Mar 27, 09, 12:20 am
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Originally Posted by babsjvd View Post
I was in an aisle seat behind my son. I asked the gentleman who was in the aisle seat across from my son if he would mind switching. Man- gentleman was not the correct description here. I am talking about one row. He was quite rude and said I should have booked it that way. Well, DUH, I would of if it were available.

I think people dont realize that seat availability is not always available.
Originally Posted by PTravel View Post

You decided his seat was fungible with yours. Obviously, he felt otherwise. Why in the world would you think you have a superior claim to his seat just because two seats together weren't available? You asked a FAVOR. It is the person of whom the favor is asked who is the only individual who has any say in whether the favor should be granted. Sorry, but the one who was rude was you.
I do not think babsjvd was rude at all. At what point do you think that he was rude then? He asked a favor, yes. He didn't insist in getting the change, he only asked. He didn't say he had more rights to this seat at all. You made that part up.

The reason why I agree with the thought that gentleman was rude was not because he did not grant the request, but the way how he reacted. A simple "no" or "no thank you" would have done the trick. There is no need to explain. But now he was insulting to the one asking and that is -also in my opinion- rude.

And that's the whole thing here. Nothing is wrong with asking, nothing is wrong with rejecting or agreeing, but it has to be done a little more polite than quite some examples in this thread and elsewere on this forum.
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Old Mar 27, 09, 3:23 am
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Originally Posted by Goldlust View Post
Probably true.

You psychological analysis is correct and also explains why protocol is quite important. If people know from protocol how to behave, they do not need to perform your analysis in order to conclude how they should react.

I have always found that people who know and act with what you call "archaic etiquette" are quite nice to meet and be around.

That is certainly a very interesting point of view. I have to tell you that of all the countries I have travelled, the USA stands out as the country, which is the most based on "social hierarchies". Coming from Denmark, it can be quite troublesome to see the huge differences betweens the Americans who have everything and the Americans who have absolutely nothing. Many countries in Europe prefer less extremes in how the population can live.

Just my thoughts (outside view).

A common reason for people behaving less than civil is that they do not really consider what they are doing or saying. It has already become a habit. I know I have been guilty of this, but as you, I strive to learn and improve.

I usually say either "Sure thing" (informal) or "My pleasure" (a bit more formal), when somebody thanks me. English not being my first language, I would be happy if anyone can tell me if he or she considers that wrong?
I feel honored that somebody completely agrees with my analysis and point of view. I agree with your points, too. Must be a cultural thing between the archaic, old Europe and the new world where everyone can be oh-so equal. From what I know about Denmark, the economic and social inequality in the US must be absolutely shocking. It is for me, and in Germany, we are far from being as socially responsible as our neighbors in Denmark.

While I am obviously not a native speaker, either, I think your solution is a good one. "Sure thing" is indeed very informal or familiar but fits very well in a culture that is more familiar in general. It is short for "Of course (certainly, naturally), I will help you out."

"My pleasure" is a very good answer, in my eyes. It is more formal, adds a human dimension, is rather charming because it's so positive, and provides a welcome change from the standard "You're welcome", which I always find a bit strange because it implies that one person is a stranger or newcomer and the other one isn't. Even if in French a similar use exists "Vous etes le bienvenu", this still seems strange, perhaps because we have nothing similar in German.

Somebody who'd answer me with 'No Thank You' when I ask a favor, would be immediately classified (not irrevocably but still) in my head as impolite and not very smart for the reasons stated in my previous post.

I'd almost rather get a roundabout rude answer or a funny answer. I really enjoyed those, especially the "Glad you're asking; I already wet this one".

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Old Mar 27, 09, 5:42 pm
Join Date: Mar 2007
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Originally Posted by PTravel View Post

You decided his seat was fungible with yours. Obviously, he felt otherwise. Why in the world would you think you have a superior claim to his seat just because two seats together weren't available? You asked a FAVOR. It is the person of whom the favor is asked who is the only individual who has any say in whether the favor should be granted. Sorry, but the one who was rude was you.

aah, I must disagree, if the person had just responded with a simple no thank you, I would probably not even remembered it happening. Funny, I can even remember what he looked like. It was the condensending remark that was rude. I didnt think that I had a superior claim to his seat. I had no entitlement to his seat . Sorry you got that out of my post-defitely not intendent.Yes, I was asking a favor. It would have been nice to sit across from my son. He didnt want to switch. A simple no thanks was all that was needed.
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Old Mar 29, 09, 9:08 am
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Topic and TOS check

Members, this thread is sharply losing altitude to off-topic banter and undue personalization. We've quite liberally kept the thread going, despite the poor outcomes of seat-switching threads in the past. This thread's future depends on you. Thanks, Ocn Vw 1K, Moderator, TravelBuzz.
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Old Mar 29, 09, 1:21 pm
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Originally Posted by tfar View Post
Very true. Most people who'd say NTY in this situation probably do mean "Sorry, I don't want to switch seats". The problem is that's not what they are saying and that's not what the other person will feel when they hear NTY.

While this class of people fares better than the passive-aggressive crowd it goes to show how inconsiderate and unreflected we all are in dealing with our fellow human beings. Personally, I strive for betterment. What the others do I have no influence over.

That said, I really got a good laugh out of some humorous replies at the beginning like "Great, I already wet this one" or "Thank God, I thought I'd have to stay here". Even in real life, I'd prefer those to a NTY.
WHO CARES! If someone wants your seat and you say "no thank you", who gives a darn about your etiquette rules. It's not like you are telling them to leave you alone, it's not rude at all. Lose all that old, formalized etiquette stuff and join this century any time now!
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Old Mar 30, 09, 5:58 am
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Hmmm. I have only been asked twice--both times on a two leg trip to Uganda when I had been very careful to get good aisle seats as it was a long and trying trip in coach. Both people had less than great seats and seemed a bit surprised that I said no ( what I actually said was sorry, no, I chose this seat because I wanted an aisle seat) . I was surprised that they would think I would trade for less. Both times it was not to sit with a friend or family member , but simply that I had better seats.
I guess my biggest reaction was surprise that they would even ask.
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