The Cheap Seats

At last. A way to make air travel more painful.

 Think your seat in coach is cramped? Take a look at the SkyRider.

The new airplane seat, to be unveiled next week at the Aircraft Interiors Expo Americas conference in Long Beach, would give passengers an experience akin to riding horseback.They’d sit at an angle with no more than 23 inches between their perch and the seat in front of them.

 “For flights anywhere from one to possibly even up to three hours … this would be comfortable seating,” says Dominique Menoud, director general of Aviointeriors Group.. “The seat … is like a saddle. Cowboys ride eight hours on their horses during the day and still feel comfortable in the saddle.”

OK, but most passengers aren’t cowboys. The average traveler won’t like squatting on a large bump for three hours. And wait until you get some turbulence. Yee-hah. Guys will walk bowlegged for hours afterward. That’s not all. Most U.S. passengers are not built extra small. You’ll need a big shoehorn to get folks into their “seats” and a prybar once the plane lands.

Of course there’s already an airline ready to sign up. Ryanair  is ready to go once approved by regulators so they can continue to be the leader in low cost fares. It’s the same airline that endorsed pay toilets, a passenger “fat tax” and suggested that only one pilot is needed in the cockpit. In an emergency, their CEO Michael O’Leary explains that the flight attendant should help land the plane if the captain is incapacitated. “Two pilots worked well in the 50s when flying a plane was difficult. Nowadays they just sit back, press a button and put it on autopilot. They then read newspapers or just do nothing.”

Everyone loves a bargain . How about a low, low price brain surgeon? An aircraft built with the cheapest parts that might be “close enough”? How about an airplane seat that can’t withstand the mandatory 16G requirement? Not me.  


2 responses to “The Cheap Seats

  1. We use straddle benches in the PAC 750 XL and the skydivers LOVE them! There is nothing like having some guy smashed onto your lap to bring everyone together. Of course our ride is only 12 minutes long, I think 3 hours might be just a bit long.

    • Sydivers are tougher than the average airline passenger. So are the military folks that occupy seats in transport aircraft such as C-130’s and helo’s that sometime use canvas seats. Regular air travelers take conveniences like padded seats and only *one* person per seat for granted. (unlike tandem jumpers) .

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