- A travel expert gives an informed answer to the ongoing debate: what is the etiquette around who should use the middle arm rests on an airplane?
While only one person is able to choose the best seat on the plane, it's a universally known fact that no one wants to sit in the middle seat of a row. It's awkward if you need to go to the toilet, you struggle to get a view out of the window, and it can feel pretty cramped.
It's especially bad for the person in the middle if they don't manage to stake claim on the arm rests either side of the seat. Which begs the question, who actually does have the best case for using the two arm rests in the middle?
A poll sent out on Twitter by Rich Eisen Show asked, "Does the person sitting in the middle seat on airplane get both armrests?"
53% of the 107,528 users who responded "No way!", while 47% argued "Yes definitely!", so we spoke to a travel expert who offered an insight into what the etiquette should actually be.
"Travelling to your holiday destination should be the start of your exciting adventure, so the last thing you want is to be politely jostling over the armrest with fellow passengers – especially if you’re not sitting next to someone you know," dealchecker's Travel Expert, Rosie Panter, commented.
"It’s universally accepted that the middle seat passenger has drawn the short straw, so they should get the luxury of both armrests. Why you ask? The aisle seat passenger has the freedom to stretch their legs and get up and down as and when they please, while the window seat passenger has the luxury of looking out of the window, day-dreaming of their holiday destination, or curling up to rest their head on the side of the plane to enjoy some shut eye, without the risk of passengers needing to clamber over them while they sleep.
"However, the middle passenger is limited by both space and places to rest their head. Therefore, the two-armrest debate should be an established plane rule.”
There's your answer, travellers. Next time you get on a plane, be mindless of using the armrests if you're not in the middle seat - and claim them as your own if you are.