Friday, April 17, 2009
Obese Passengers Must Buy Two Seats
My heart goes out to huge people. There is so much "fat" discrimination in our society and now, United Airlines has announced that obese passengers will be bumped from full flights and be required to buy two tickets on the next flight or upgrade to business class. (tip from me: chose business class). Think how humiliating and expensive it is to be obese!
I do understand the need for such draconian rules and it isn't fair to other passengers if an extra large person spills over into their seat. But, lets face it, to fit comfortably into any coach airline seat you need to be under 5 feet tall and weigh, oh... about 80 lbs. The airlines have squeezed the space so narrowly passengers are already touching and it is impossible to cross your legs or crawl out.
Delta Air Lines, the world's largest carrier, tries to place overweight passengers next to empty seats. I haven't seen an empty seat on an airplane for about two years. Southwest Airlines requires a passenger who cannot lower their armrest to buy two seats also.
I don't envy the flight attendants who have to enforce the new policy. And the embarrassment of being asked to move or be bumped from a flight when you are already seated is painful to think of.
Its no wonder bariatric and lap-band surgery are two of the fastest growing elective procedures. Being fat is no fun and it is proving to be very expensive.
Posted by Toni Brayer, MD at 10:15 PM