Why You Should Choose The Worst Seat On The Plane

by Emma Drew
Seat window on plane

When it comes to choosing where to sit on an airplane journey, most of us often choose the seat by the window, in the middle of the plane for the most comfortable experience – or so you’d think!

It wasn’t until I came to book my flight to Milan a few years ago that I discovered something different. After leaving it to the very last minute to book my flights, to my dismay, I was concerned to find the only remaining seats available were on the row at the far end of the aircraft. 

David Duff, Content Specialist at SeatGuru once said that the worst seats on planes are generally in the last row of the aircraft due to the close proximity to the toilets and the clatter of aircrew opening and closing cupboards.

So, I boarded the plane, unsure of what to expect. Would it be noisy or worse, smelly? Either way, I had little choice but to put up with whatever experience would come my way. However, as I settled into my seat, I was actually quite relieved to find that it wasn’t so bad.  I was also pleasantly surprised to find no one else had booked a seat in the same row as me, which meant I had the space all to myself to stretch out and even better, with just the cubicle wall behind me, it meant there was no bothersome passengers to contend with.

Woman in airplane looking through the window

As I’m sure most of us have experienced at some point, one of the most annoying aspects of plane journeys is having the passenger behind you, constantly kicking the back seat of your chair, especially if you’re trying to concentrate on reading something or worse, attempting to take a nap.

I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve had young children getting restless, playing up, screaming and shouting, with their arms and legs flying about, and parents struggling to control them but on this occasion, this last minute impromptu booking turned out to be pure bliss!

The location of the seat was an advantage since I was one of the first passengers to be served when the air hostess came round with a refreshment trolley. I had the first choice on whatever food and drinks were available. After all, there is nothing more disappointing than waiting ages for your turn, only to find all the best mini wines have gone – sob! 

I could enjoy my drink whilst gazing out of the window, without having to crane my neck to peer over the person next to me to get a view out the sights below.  

Young woman smiles while waiting to exit a commercial flight. A male passenger is exiting in the background.

And when I did need to use the bathroom, I didn’t have to scramble awkwardly over the passenger in the outer aisle seat. I could also time how long the passenger before had spent in the toilet and gauge when it might be safe to go in. 

I remained undisturbed throughout the whole flight and I even managed to drop off to sleep because I was so relaxed, which is something I’ve never managed to do well on a plane before. When it came to landing, I was one of the last passengers to leave the aircraft which meant I didn’t have to rush to get out of my seat, or hurry to get my case down, or get squashed in the aisle by other passengers scrambling to get off the plane. Instead, I left the aircraft feeling calm and completely stress free.

The experience got me thinking, could booking the worst seat on a plane actually turn out to be the best choice?

During the pandemic, airlines have had to adapt to the way they offer passenger seats, by setting people apart as far as possible to avoid the spread of the virus. Lufthansa has since introduced a new service that allows customers to easily book middle seats for as little as 10 euros. Perhaps we will soon start to see a new trend for people booking the middle seats on planes, particularly those positioned at the back of the aircraft.

As Jens Bischof, CEO Eurowings says, “In times of Corona, customers attach particular importance to personal comfort and a little more distance.”

From now on, I will continue to book the seat in the back row during plane journeys for the most enjoyable and best experience.

What do you think about booking the back row of the plane? Have you had a similar experience? Let us know in the comments section below.

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