From the aviation genius who floated the idea of making you pay to go to the bathroom on one of their flights, Michael O’Leary of Ryanair is suggesting they might implement a “standing” class of passenger service. And by “standing” I mean if you buy one of those tickets you’re going to be standing instead of sitting.
Ryanair boss Michael O’Leary wants passengers to stand on the budget airline’s flights, in a bid to pack in more people and boost profits.
Passengers would pay less to huddle next to what have been described as “bar stools”, with seatbelts around their waists.
O’Leary has already held talks with US plane manufacturer Boeing about designing a jet with standing room.
It’s bad enough to have to sit in some airlines’ coach sections and contend with the elbows and shoulders of passengers seated on either side of you. Consider the appeal of being on a flight for an hour or two mashed standing against fellow passengers. In a seat, at least, you’re guaranteed the space between the armrests if nothing else. In O’Leary’s vision you’re going to be contending with your fellow passengers for as much room as it takes to fully inhale. Forget about setting your drink, snack, or magazine down anywhere.
Something else to consider. The seat belts in the airline seats are a safety joke to those professionals who understand the forces put on people during emergency maneuvers (or simply during a loss of pilot control) at the speeds aircraft attain these days. However, the fact that you’re in contact with the seat tends to offer you some stability and ability to withstand harsh accelerations and decelerations. If you’ve ever been standing on a bus or a subway train, you know that stability isn’t there regardless of whether you’re holding onto a rider strap or not. Those effects you felt were on vehicles traveling at well under 100 mph. The average commercial jet can’t stay flying at speeds of less than double that and most of them are traveling at 3-5 times that speed. The forces you’ll experience even entering choppy air are going to make the subway look smooth as glass. From the sounds of the plan, you’ll have a “seatbelt” tying you around the middle to what amounts to a post. Experience a sudden deceleration in that position and you might just get folded in half.
Thanks, but no thanks. I hope the plan isn’t approved because it’s not safe but even if it is, you’ll never catch me on one of those planes.