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Apr 2013

Which is the best seat in economy?


Do you often wonder which seat is the best choice when flying economy? British Airways have recently conducted research into the most popular seats on a standard Boeing 747 aircraft.

The four pairs of seats: 51B/51C, 52B/52C, 51H/51J and 52 H/52J (see image above), are the most commonly chosen in economy class. These seats are often favoured by couples as they can have a row to themselves. But are these seats really the best choice?

The extra space next to the window makes it hard to lean against the wall if you want some shut eye. It’s also close to the bathrooms, meaning there will be a lot of people walking back and forth and chatting nearby. The final problem with these seats is that as they are not properly aligned with the seats in front, the TV screen is off centre and the alignment of your foot space is often off too.

Other popular seats are the bulkhead/exit row seats (highlighted in green and yellow in the above image). Whilst they offer more legroom which is great for our taller travellers, the close proximity to the bathrooms makes this a bothersome position if you plan to sleep.

So where do we prefer to travel? I usually opt for an aisle seat in the middle row, preferably in the row 44-46 area. Firstly an aisle seat means you can get up and down whenever you please to use the bathroom or stretch your legs without having to bother/wake someone. I prefer the middle aisle as it means only 1 person needs to pester you to get out, as opposed to 2 on the left and right aisles. And finally, sitting in the middle of the plane means you are as far from the toilets as possible – meaning less thoroughfare and chatter. However if you have the misfortune of sitting near a screaming baby, invest in some noise cancelling headphones!

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