Cranky on the Web: Paying to Avoid Children

Cranky on the Web

For travelers who want to avoid babies and kids, one airline will test an adults-only sectionAssociated Press
I have no problem with an airline selling an adults-only section. What I just don’t know if whether there will be any demand for it at these prices.

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8 comments on “Cranky on the Web: Paying to Avoid Children

  1. As was said on NPR’s Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me this morning, airlines now have a financial incentive to drive adults to pay the premium and fill those seats. For that reason flight attendants will be whispering to babies as they board that “The monster can only get you if you fall asleep….”

  2. I always want to sit in the no-children section. It’s called the Exit Row, and on US carriers, Federal regulations prohibit children under the age of 15. Win!

    1. I’m trying to remember how they handled this on the flight to Huntsville, AL for Space Camp.. There was some seat shuffling, and I think they got the oldest kids to sit in those rows, but the whole plane as basically kids headed to Space Camp.. But that was also in the 90s…

  3. Is it passengers who want quiet who should be charged? or those whose children are making the noise?

    1. I’d love to see FAs hand out Benadryl to children on flights.

      I know, I know… For some stupid reason, Benadryl’s packaging these days says that you aren’t supposed to use it to get children to go to sleep. That’s what my parents used it for on trips when I was a kid, however, and it did the trick. Unisom uses the same active ingredient.

  4. So they’re basically saying no children in the front section of the plane, which is just under 25% of the seats. My guess is that these seats would have been offered for a premium anyway, and this is just an attempt to entice more people to pay the premium. I can see two ways this could backfire:

    1. I’m flying without children. I would have paid a premium to sit upfront, but now there’s a higher chance I’ll get assigned to the front anyway, so I’ll take my chances and not pay up.

    2. I’m flying with children. I would have paid a premium to sit upfront, but since I’m not allowed to sit upfront, I won’t pay up.

    These two backfire possibilities need to be balanced against those who will pay a premium just to not sit next to children. It will be an interesting experiment. Unfortunately there’s no control condition, because it’s a new route with a new aircraft.

  5. On most narrow-body planes the sound of whining kids or crying babies is going to carry to the “No kids” section. Most babies cry when the plane is descending and their ears hurt.

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