You know who chooses a window seat? Sickos.
Just kidding, but really: This notion of personal preference has been on my mind as the buzz still hums loudly surrounding a highly controversial report that says people who prefer window seats are selfish and exist in their own bubbles. Well, I'm here today to speak on behalf of the aisle sitters.
We don’t need your permission to go to the bathroom. And I don’t need to gaze outside to remind myself I’m barreling through the air in the belly of a giant metal bird. (See Bridesmaids: “I have an announcement: There's a colonial woman on the wing, I saw her! There's something they're not telling us! She was churning butter!”)
And by the way window gazer, what are you doing... tanning? The sun is blaring and you’re bothering everyone who wants to get to their destination without having to apply sunscreen indoors. Shut the shade, peppy. Most of us don’t want to be reminded we’re above the clouds.
I’m aisle all the way, every single time. Long flights, short flights, upgrades, by the stinky bathroom — it’s the aisle for me. New York to Hong Kong? Aisle. New York to Pittsburgh? Aisle.
First of all, I’m tall, and in the aisle I can stretch my legs out at an angle that actually feels like I’m not stuck in a permanent fetal position. I don’t need to rest my head on the inner wall of the plane, a Tempur-Pedic neck pillow does me just fine. I can keep myself hydrated (or tipsy) with water after water, and wine after wine without having to poke anyone to go to the bathroom. I don’t feel trapped. Well, on the plane, yes, but not in the corner like some scared animal. I can get up and stretch, again without nudging someone to ask if I can squeeze by. I can patrol the aisle like a beat cop if I so choose. When I sit down, it doesn’t affect anyone else. The flight attendant can pass me my chips and peanuts without me having to stretch my arm across your face. You, window sitter, are a nuisance. You stretch your legs and I can’t fall back to sleep until you are officially back in position.
Wireless headphones are meant for aisle sitters; I can easily flip up my tray table without getting wires all tangled, hop up, and let you out. “Sorry, sorry,” you window sitters always say. You should be sorry! You get two bathroom breaks per flight, don’t care how long we’re up there. More than two, you need to cut the fluids immediately or suffer in silence. If you have a frequent urination problem you need to either buy some Depends or click right on that aisle seat when you book your flight.
After landing, I can easily file out without having to bend my head to my chest so it doesn’t hit the overhead bin. I can grab my bag from the overhead and skedaddle out of there while you wait for literally every aisle person to depart ahead of you. Hope your view was worth it. What are you seeing at night anyway? Nothing.
Some aisle-preferrers do have health concerns and worry about blood clots. Frequent traveler Anthony Bourdain says people who choose aisle seats have weak bladders, but who cares? We’re not bothering anyone. “Excuse me, excuse me…”
“They enjoy the space and relative freedom, and tend to be more outgoing, sociable, and amenable people,” Jo says. “They are maybe more nervous travelers — easier to see what’s going on and can disembark first.”
She adds that men usually prefer aisle seats as to not be disturbed.
Lisa Forbell at The Travel Expert says that people in the aisles "want to feel in control" and that means leaving the middle and window seat out as an option.
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