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  • Women travellers are better behaved in-flight as compared to men

    Published on October 1, 2013

    Mumbai : To determine Indian travellers’ stance towards reclining their seats on board an aircraft, a leading global tAir Indiaravel search site undertook a survey amongst 1000 Indian travellers.   The survey by Skyscanner revealed that women are less likely to recline their seats on short/long haul flights and when they did, 69% of women said they would recline it at night as compared with 61% of men.

    The survey of over 1,000 flyers found that one in five Indians think airlines should ban reclining seats while a third believe airlines should enforce ‘set times’ for seat reclining. Psychologist Dr. Becky Spelman says, “A reclined seat can negatively impact a person’s overall flight experience, especially if the person in front is being particularly inconsiderate.” She added, “There are two general personality types while travelling. There’s the‘Altruistic Soul’, who is considerate of others, and the ‘Selfish Ego’. The latter will look to increase their comfort at the expense of others.”

    In fact, Skyscanner’s survey found that while majority of Indian travellers admitted to reclining their seats on short and long haul flights, women displayed their ‘altruistic soul’ tendencies with 66% saying they were less likely to recline their seats if the person behind was noticeably pregnant in contrast to 56% of men travellers who exhibited their ‘Selfish ego’ characteristics.   Similarly 58% of women said they would not recline their seats if the person behind was elderly or frail in contrast to 49% of men.

    Skyscanner’s survey further revealed that more than half of the travellers in the 55+ age bracket said they were least likely to recline their seats on short/long haul flights and when they did, it was mainly during night-time. Interestingly, the younger generation consisting of 18-24 year olds said they would recline their seats only when the person in front did.  As per the travel search site’s survey, 38% of women felt that airlines should enforce set times for reclining one’s seat on short and long haul flights as compared with 33% of their male counterparts.  However, when it came to long haul flights, women were a bit more charitable, with 46% of lady travellers of the opinion that people should be free to do what they like on long haul flights.

    “The effect of people reclining their seat can result in various negative emotions such as anger, stress, anxiety, frustration and upset for the passenger behind them. This emotional impact can result in a whole range of unhelpful behaviours, including air rage,” says Dr. Spelman.

    “What with competing ‘Selfish Egos’ and ‘Altruistic Souls’, set times for seat reclining on planes could actually make for an improved experience for passengers,” added Dr Spelman. She concludes that “such rules tend to ensure better social cohesion, as people are conditioned to obey boundaries. While these rules place a limit on the personal choice passengers have over their own comfort, people will generally adhere to them, accepting that it is fair.  This could lead to a more pleasant flying experience for the majority.”

    Kavitha Gnanamurthy, Skyscanner’s Marketing Manager for India, commented, “For most of us the travel experience marks the beginning of our holiday and thus we all look forward to an enjoyable and stress free travel experience.  Irritants such as reclined seats and loud passengers can ruin our travel experience immensely especially on long haul flights. Our survey reveals that women by default being the kind, caring and maternal creatures, are more altruistic in nature in comparison with men when it comes to appropriate behaviour on board an aircraft. ”

    Source : Rohini Saldanha