If you had to choose, which would be preferable on a flight: Sitting next to a crying baby or a smelly adult?
It’s not a choice anyone wants to make. And it’s probably not up to you anyway: Unless it’s your crying baby or your smelly friend, you won’t get to choose your seatmate. But with the summer travel season fast approaching (and hot weather and lots of family vacations increasing the chances you will in fact get seated next to one of the two people in this scenario) and along with it, packed planes, it may be a situation in which you find yourself.
A new survey of more than 2,000 adults by Harris Interactive found which seatmate is preferable to the majority of traveler and more. For instance, legroom is so important to half of travelers, they would be willing to put up with the dreaded chatty seatmate just to get a little extra space.
Beyond extra legroom, in-flight amenities like Wi-Fi and entertainment are both important, but Wi-Fi came out on top as the more important amenity of the two to survey respondents.
And while it may be no surprise that travelers hate the carry-on bag fees on some airlines (we’re looking at you Spirit, Allegiant and Frontier) what may be a surprise is just how far a person night go to avoid them: Nearly 40 percent said they’d rather have a stranger sleep on their shoulder than pay for a carry-on bag.
“Travelers have been dealing with increasing airline prices and add-on fees for the past few years,” said Mike de Vere, president of The Harris Poll. “We wanted to find out which amenities people were willing to open up their wallets for, and discovered that while many consider added comfort and entertainment to be worth shelling out for, nearly two in five would give up personal boundaries to avoid carry-on baggage fees.”
But back to the crying baby vs. smelly seatmate question: Which would you prefer as a seatmate? Some 63 percent of survey respondents would pick the crying baby. Which would you choose?