We all have our gripes with flying, but travelling as a plus-size person is especially challenging.
Plus-size blogger Jae’lynn Chaney believes airlines simply don’t cater for bigger bodies.
She’s putting her story out there to share the realities of ‘flying while fat’.
The 25-year-old from Vancouver, Canada, continues to travel the globe even though she says airlines aren’t built for people of her size.
‘I find that many situations surrounding plus-size travel are the least accommodating of my weight,’ she said.
‘From public transportation with seatbelts that don’t fit me, or seats that are too small, to plane bathrooms that I can’t even fit in – travelling as a plus-size person comes with many challenges.’
Jae’lynn is a US size 6XL (a size 24 in the UK), and lives with chronic pain and disabilities.
The 25-year-old says she’s gained ‘hundreds of pounds’ after being diagnosed with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS).
‘After graduating college in 2018, I became very sick and it took over a year for them to figure out what was going on with me,’ she said.
‘During that time I was in and out of the hospital and determined medically housebound until 2019 when I got the diagnosis of pulmonary hypertension. During that year, I gained over 100 more pounds.’
Jae’lynn says if plus-sized people want to fly comfortably, many are also forced to dip into their pocket to pay for two seats — making this unfeasible for people on a budget.
And, if the inaccessibility of travelling wasn’t enough, trolls slam her for wanting to travel in the first place.
Jae’lynn says this fatphobia is rampant in society – so, unfortunately, comments like this on her videos are unsurprising.
She says: ‘[One person said] that I’m going to cause a plane crash because of my size.’
‘Many of the comments say that I should buy two seats or that I shouldn’t be allowed to fly.’
Regardless of people’s judgment, Jae’lynn won’t let the hate deter her from living her best life – or stop her from sharing the reality of travelling while fat.
In one video, she shows her struggles to pull down a tray table, while another documents Jae’lynn and her partner struggling to fit into a toilet cubicle.
‘I get asked how the airplane bathrooms are for someone my size all the time so I thought I’d show you what it’s like from my fiancés point of view,’ Jae’lynn wrote as the caption.
Jae’lynn is part of a wider movement of plus-sized content creators sharing the reality of ‘flying while fat’. On TikTok, British blogger Kirstyleanne shares her experiences to help plus-sized people travel the world.
Jae’lynn says she’s on a mission to ’empower people to live their life to the fullest’ and ‘show that bodies of all sizes and abilities are just as worthy as those who fall into the societal norm of beauty’.
She added: ‘Bodies change and fluctuate over time and I believe we should love and embrace our body at every stage of life.
‘I’m sharing my travel experiences to show everyone that they can travel the world if it’s what they dream of.’
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