Tired of traveling overweight? Try Tonga!

I just read a great article in the San Francisco Chronicle about overweight travelers and a way for them to get away from the judgmental eyes of the “skinny finicky foreigners.”

The answer? TONGA.

Apparently, in Tonga being overweight is not quite the disaster that we as Westerners say it is — to the contrary, being larger in the island nation is a sign of “wealth and social standing,” kind of like 17th century France. Perhaps they have yet to get the memo on heart disease and diabetes.

I don’t mean to sound critical, but the whole idea of traveling to a place where you can be accepted for being overweight seems kind of like circumventing the real issue. The problem is still there; you’ve just gone to a place where people won’t bother you about it. Is that helping you resolve the matter?

But my favorite part of the article is a quote from NAAFA, the National Association to Advance Fat Acceptance:

“When you get to your seat during pre-boarding, raise the armrest between seats. This may give you the inch or two of extra space you need. The chances are that the passenger who will be seated next to you won’t say anything; if he does, smile pleasantly and say that you’ll both be more comfortable if the armrest is up.”

Will you be more comfortable?

Read Catherine’s article on why Disneyland had to shut down It’s a Small World After All this year here.


Space most definitely isn’t an issue in the new Singapore Airlines A380! Check it out: