Survey Reveals the Best and Worst Seats on an Airplane

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Photo Courtesy of EasyJet
Photo Courtesy of EasyJet

If you’ve flown with any kind of frequency, you probably have your preferences for where you most like to sit on an aircraft. Some of us prefer the extra leg room that comes with the exit rows for example, while others like to be seated closer to the front in order to make a quick exit. Every passenger has his or her own favorite seat, be it window, aisle or in the middle. Thanks to a new survey by European carrier EasyJet, we now have a clear breakdown of just what those preferences are exactly, and some of the results may surprise you.

EasyJet asked 10,000 of its customers about their favorite place to sit on a plane, with 59% of them responding that they preferred the window seat above all others. Another 38% indicated that the the aisle seat was their top choice, while just 3% actually said they liked being squeezed in the middle. Those who chose the window tended to be more nervous fliers, or indicated that they enjoyed the opportunity to take photos throughout their flight. On the other hand, passengers who preferred the aisle seat said they appreciated the extra space, and the ability to get up and move about the cabin once they were inflight.

Other interesting numbers that came out of the survey include the fact that younger fliers – those under the age of 25 – gravitated toward the window more often, with 76% of those saying they preferred that seat falling into that age category. As passengers ages go up, they tended to select the aisle seat more frequently. Women also had a higher preference for the window, while men chose the aisle with higher frequency. Most of those who said they preferred the center seat, did so after allowing a travel companion to select their seat first. Curiously enough, the Portuguese were most adamant about wanting the window, with 80% saying they preferred it, while the Dutch and Germans were more likely to pick the aisle.

800px-Easyjet_a319_interior_in_flight_arp

Sales data showed some interesting numbers for customer preferences as well. EasyJet said that rows 6 and 7 sold out the fastest on their aircraft, with seat 7F being the most popular overall. That is a window seat that falls on the right side of the aircraft, and happens to be the first seat that is eligible for discounted fares that the airline frequently offers on some of its short haul flights.

For some inexplicable reason, the least popular seat on EasyJet flights is 19C, which falls near the middle of the aircraft. The airline was at a loss to explain why this was the case, although it speculates that the position of the seat is perceived to be the furthest from exits and restrooms, which are often of high priority for some passengers.

What is your preference for where you sit on an aircraft? Do you have strong feelings either way? Personally, I like to avoid the middle seat if I can, but otherwise I’m just happy to be on the flight.

About the Author: Kraig Becker

Kraig Becker is a freelance outdoor and adventure travel writer who covers extreme sports, mountaineering and active travel. Based out of Austin, TX he writes about his own travels while encouraging others to seek their own opportunities for adventure where ever they go.

Comments:

  • I prefer a seat over the wings and at the ail (strongest point in a aircraft and I can get up anytime )
    The least preferred seat for me is close to a toilette.

  • The closer to front….the better!! Smoother ride. The best seat I have never had is the first seat on the plane.

  • I like sitting mid plane as I find that this is the smoothest ride, slightly ahead of the wing gives a better view. The closer to the front the sooner you get out of the plane at arrival. The worst seat is the last row, the seat back does not recline, it is the noisiest either or most often due to the fact that there is a galley, and toilets as well as engine noise tends to be loudest, and you are the last to depart the plane. I have also found that the overhead storage often is reduced to other cabin storage (flight crew’s gear or some other use)

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