Why You Should Always Move Over If There's An Empty Seat in Your Row On An Airplane

By: Andrea Romano | Pulished on 2023-12-14

Of course, there are many reasons why a person may decide to stay put. Perhaps they're not fans of the window and/or aisle seat. After all, you're more likely to get slammed by a drink cart if you're at the end of a row or get incredibly cold while squished against the plane's wall.


Some may be worried they're insulting the person next to them by choosing to move away. Perhaps they don't want the person to think they smell funny. We assure you, no one will be offended — especially on a long trip.

Why You Should Always Move Over If There's An Empty Seat in Your Row On An Airplane-Trip Advise

Maybe it's just not worth the effort? We can see this being the case if you're on the bus or subway. After all, you might be getting off in one or two stops. If you're dealing with an uncommonly short trip on public transit, it's totally fine to stay put.

So, what do you do if you're seated next to a middle-seater? Before you ask them, "Who hurt you?," it's best to simply request, politely, that they move over. You're not asking for them to lay in the aisle, after all. Nine times out of ten, this works perfectly. After all, some people might just not be aware they are "allowed" to move, so you're just clearing it up for them. We strongly advise against pushing, shoving, name-calling, or other aggressive tactics. The same goes for passive-aggressive tactics like coughing, clearing your throat, or heavy sighs. Not everyone can pick up on these. Sitting in a silent rage is also not a great way to get what you want.

If the person politely declines, you can always try explaining how moving to the other seat can benefit both of you or even try to negotiate if they're not fans of the seat. And since you've already made a good impression by politely asking in the first place, there's very few instances when this would fail. You catch more flies with honey than with vinegar, as they say.


Next time you find yourself with the opportunity to spread out, by all means, do so. For the good of humanity.

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