Airline Madness Second Round

Airline Madness is Gadling’s tournament of airline annoyances. You can catch up on all of the previous tournament action here.

Just like in the NCAA men’s basketball tournament, the first round of Airline Madness saw some major upsets. The #12 seed, Inattentive parents of crying babies, and #13 seeded Obese people who take up two seats won their first round match-ups with ease against higher seeded opponents. In fact, Obese people who take up two seats received the second-most votes of any peeve in the first round. Meanwhile, we finally settled the debate between seat recliners and people who hate seat recliners, with the haters being deemed the more annoying passengers. In the rest of our first round match-ups, the higher seeded teams advanced with dominating victories. That, of course, brings us to the second round, which features some very intriguing match-ups. Read on to see who’s battling to move on to the Final Four!Voting will be open on all second round match-ups today with their own posts on the site. Here’s what you have to look forward to: [Update: voting in second round match-ups is now closed.]

More Airline Madness:
First round match-ups
#1 Annoying passengers vs. #16 Disgusting bathrooms
#2 Legroom vs. #15 Inefficient boarding procedures
#3 Lack of free food/prices for food vs. #14 Cold cabin/no blankets
#4 Baggage Fees vs. #13 Obese people who take up two seats
#5 Lack of overhead space vs. Inattentive parents of crying babies
#6 Change fees/no free standby vs. #11 Lack of personal entertainment/charging for entertainment
#7 Rude airline staff vs. #10 Having to turn off electronic devices during takeoff & landing
#8 People who recline their seats vs. #9 People who get mad at people who recline their seats
Hotel Madness: Gadling’s tournament of airline annoyances

Catch up on all the Airline Madness here.

Spirit Airlines to abolish reclining seats

It looks like the “recline or don’t recline” issue can finally be put to bed. Spirit Airlines, the budget carrier famous for charging for overhead bin space, racy ad campaigns and general disdain for all passenger comforts has just started rolling out aircraft bereft of reclining seats.

Citing extra space and lower weight, the airline claims that this will help passengers save money by keeping prices low. But in reality, it’s just another stunt to cram as many passengers as possible into the already crowded, fee-riddled aircraft. The Sun Sentinel has more details on the upcoming plan below.

10 passengers we love to hate: Day 10 – Aggressive seat recliners

Dear passenger in front of me – I appreciate that you’ve taken the captain’s suggestion to “sit back, relax, and enjoy the flight.” I’m trying to do the same thing myself. Heck, we’re stuck in this metal tube together with nothing to do but sleep and watch movies for the next several hours. But I gotta be honest – you’re getting just a bit too aggressive with your seat recline.

Sure, I can appreciate that seat recline button is there for a reason. By all means, use it to get comfortable. But you’re reclining that thing like you’re competing for a medal in the X-Games. Was it really necessary to recline your seat back BEFORE we even took off? The flight attendant even asked you to bring it upright for takeoff and landing, but you went and put it immediately back down again. Is that even safe? It’s not like this coach seat reclines into a bed and we’re busting out our pajamas.

And would it kill you to ask me first if you’re going to drop that comfy airplane throne down on my face? You don’t always have toddlers or Verne Troyer sitting behind you. Those of us over six feet tall have trouble even fitting our knees behind the seat, letting alone getting comfortable, and now your seatback is all up in my meager personal business. And forget about using my laptop – with your seatback so aggressively reclined, my laptop is looking more like a giant Dell-brand oyster that’s clamped shut on a pearl. How am I supposed to squeeze my hands on the keyboard?

Maybe I’m just that angry guy who likes to rant for no reason whatsoever. I am kind of cranky today. But I suspect, if you were to ask any other passenger in my position, they would feel the same. It’s a tight space to begin with – cut the rest of us some slack and ask me before you recline that La-Z Boy like it was nobody’s business.

Read about ALL the passengers we love to hate.

What’s your preferred seat position?

I’m curious as to what people consider an appropriate position for their seat while they are cruising America’s skies. I’ve always been in the school of thought that I don’t want to encroach on the space of the person behind me. From personal experience, I know that working on a laptop is next to impossible with a reclined seat in front of you. Even reading the newspaper or anything on your lap can be really difficult.

What I’ve found so far is that people are sorely divided on the topic. Some people don’t feel the least bit awkward about leaning back into the next seat – others refuse to recline out of respect for the person behind.

I don’t mean to say that anyone who reclines their seat back on an airplane is a terrible person and hates the person behind them. What I’m most curious about though is what space you prefer: the space you recline into or the space that the person in front of you doesn’t recline into. What do you think?