What to Do When Seated Next to a Fat Person on a Plane

When faced with the situation of being seated next to a larger individual on a plane, there are several considerations to keep in mind to ensure a comfortable and respectful experience for both parties involved.

Understanding and Empathy

First and foremost, it’s essential to approach the situation with empathy and understanding. It’s crucial to recognize that everyone has different body types and that there are many factors that may contribute to a person’s size.


Communication is key in any situation, including when seated next to a larger individual on a plane. If you find yourself feeling uncomfortable due to the limited space, politely communicate your concerns to the flight attendant. They may be able to assist in finding a solution that works for everyone.

Respect Boundaries

Respecting personal space and boundaries is essential for a pleasant flight experience. While it may be tempting to encroach on the other person’s space, it’s important to remain mindful of their comfort and to avoid invading their personal space.

Use Armrest Etiquette

When seated next to a larger individual, it’s important to follow armrest etiquette. While it may be customary for each passenger to use one armrest, in situations where space is limited, it’s courteous to allow the larger individual to have both armrests.

Adapt and Adjust

Flexibility is key when navigating a cramped seating situation. Be prepared to adapt and adjust as needed to ensure a comfortable experience for both yourself and the person seated next to you.

Shift Positions

If you find yourself feeling uncomfortable due to the limited space, consider shifting positions or adjusting your seating arrangement. This may involve leaning slightly to one side or using additional pillows for support.

Bring Your Own Comfort Items

Consider bringing along your own comfort items to enhance your in-flight experience. This could include items such as neck pillows, blankets, or noise-canceling headphones to help create a more relaxed environment.

Be Considerate

Above all, remember to be considerate and respectful towards the person seated next to you. Treat them with the same kindness and courtesy that you would expect to receive in return.

Seat Selection Strategies

One way to mitigate the potential discomfort of being seated next to a larger individual on a plane is to carefully choose your seat during the booking process. Opting for seats with extra legroom or selecting seats in less crowded areas of the plane can help increase your comfort level.

Consider Premium Seats

Some airlines offer premium seating options that provide more space and amenities, which can be beneficial if you anticipate being seated next to a larger individual. While these seats may come at an additional cost, the added comfort and convenience may be worth it for a more enjoyable flight experience.

Frequently Asked Questions

Question Answer
What if I feel uncomfortable asking for assistance? If you feel uncomfortable communicating your concerns to the flight attendant directly, you can discreetly signal for assistance or write a note explaining your situation. Flight attendants are trained to handle such situations with discretion and sensitivity.
Is it appropriate to offer assistance to the larger individual? While it’s important to be respectful of the other person’s autonomy, offering assistance in a non-intrusive manner, such as helping them with overhead luggage or offering to adjust shared armrests, can be appreciated if done tactfully.
What if the flight is full, and there are no alternative seating options? If there are no alternative seating options available, try to make the best of the situation by adjusting your own posture and utilizing available comfort items. Remember to remain patient and considerate throughout the flight.

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