As nice as it would be, the vast majority of us can’t afford to fly first class, at least not for every flight. But believe it or not, you can still get wonderful service when you fly coach, especially when you choose the right seats. In fact, where you sit on a plane can make a big difference in the experience you have.
Maybe you’re concerned about having plenty of room in the overhead compartment, or perhaps your flight is long and you’re hoping to take a nap. But more often than not, passengers just want to be treated well (and get their orange juice as soon as possible).
When you can’t fly first class, here’s where to sit to get the best service.
The factors that go into choosing where to sit
Aisle or window? That’s a matter of personal preference. | SanneBerg/iStock/Getty Images
Some people have some pretty strong opinions about where to sit on a plane, especially when it comes to choosing a window seat versus the aisle. But while that is a matter of personal preference (with more people preferring the aisle, it seems), it probably won’t affect the service you receive.
Most passengers flock to the front
Most people want to sit toward the front. | DigitalVision/iStock/Getty Images
Have you ever noticed that, when passengers can choose their own seats, the front tends to fill up first? While there are advantages and disadvantages to any seat you choose, passengers tend to like the idea of being able to get off the plane first. Plus, since the bathrooms are located at the back of the plane, admittedly things can get pretty hectic back there.
But if you always gravitate toward the front, you may be doing it all wrong.
For the best service, head to the back
If you want better service, choose a seat toward the back. | ImageSource/iStock/Getty Images
Sitting in the back of the plane can be a real benefit to passengers, believe it or not. Choosing a seat in the back has numerous advantages, according to an article by a flight attendant, Annie, on Oyster.com. And if anyone would know where you’ll get the best service, it’s a flight attendant, the one who is doing the serving.
Why the back is better
You’ll find it easier to get your flight attendant’s attention from a seat in the back. | pcruciatti/iStock/Getty Images
Flight attendants know that if you’re sitting towards the back of the plane, you’ll receive the most attentive service. If you’re near the back, where the flight attendants are hanging out, it’s much easier to flag them down and get your second drink (or anything else). As it turns out, flight attendants aren’t big fans of the call button — it forces them to flaunt the item that the passenger requests, and sometimes they don’t have enough pillows, blankets, earplugs or vodka to accommodate everyone.
The party is in the back
Here’s another reason to choose a seat in the back. | Kasto80/iStock/Getty Images
Another reason to choose a rear seat — when the flight isn’t full, empty seats tend to be in the back. And when the flight crew is done doling out drinks and snacks, they’re more likely to relax in the back and have fun with the few passengers sitting there. Free drinks, anyone?
The storage factor
Chose a seat in the back? You’ll get to board first, and you’ll get first dibs on the overhead bin. | michaeljung/iStock/Getty Images
You may exit the plane first if you’re in the front, but if you’re in the back, you’ll board first — and that means having first crack at the overhead bins. If you travel with a large carryon instead of checking luggage, this can save you some serious stress because you know there will be room for your bag.
Other ways to make your flight more pleasant
Always be polite to the flight crew. | Ruben Ramos/iStock/Getty Images
No matter where you sit on the plane, you’ll get better service by showing a little kindness to the crew. Flight attendants recommend boarding with a smile, saying hello, listening to the safety demonstration, and removing headphones when someone is speaking to you. Common courtesy goes a long way.
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