Courses & TravelSeptember 15, 2010

Baggage Fees And Now Saddle Sores. What's Next?

Skyrider.jpg

You can't make this stuff up. An article in the Telegraph details the new seats a company is promoting for potential use on budget airlines:

SkyRider: new 'saddle' seat allows airlines to 'cram' more passengers.

The design, named the "SkyRider", allows just 23 inches of legroom, which is about seven inches less than the average seat's space of 30 inches.*

Shaped similar to a horse saddle, passengers sit at an angle, with their weight taken on by their legs. It allows seats to be overlapped.

*The seats would also offer storage space including a shelf for carry-on bags and hooks to hang a jacket or a handbag. The makers say the seat would allow budget airlines, such as Ryanair, to cram more passengers into their tight cabins.

I'd like to cram the inventor of this brilliance into a tight cabin.

What the heck is "Ryanair" anyway? On Mattair I'd be sure to eliminate passengers who ignore zone numbers when they board, drunk pilots, cranky flight attendants, the concept of a middle seat, shared armrests, sub-zero temperatures coming through cracks in the exit doors, shoulder-separating carts rambling down the aisle, chatty strangers, all eight of the free peanuts and both mini-pretzels, throw-pillows lined in what feels like the sheets of fabric-softener you stick into a dryer, charges for baggage, body odor, celebrities who wear sunglasses to announce the fact that they are a celebrity (Kevin Bacon), wanna-be celebrities who wear sunglasses and make you want to think they are celebrities, turbulence, pump-fake landings and two-hour delays on the tarmac. At the top of my priority list, I'd expand legroom, not come up with masochistic ways to take it away.

Not since Ryan Leaf has a Ryan anything been such a bust of an idea. As an editor once said to one of my colleagues after he turned in a story: "Sorry, try again. Almost anything else will do."

--Matty G.

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