When it comes to flying, there’s the eternal debate on what makes the perfect seat. Different people will argue the advantages and disadvantages of the aisle vs. window seat.
Cathay Pacific surveyed Australian holidaymakers on their travel behaviour and preferences, and they’ve captured an interesting snapshot of the findings via an infographic (see below). Based on the results of the survey, more than half of Aussie travellers surveyed (61%) prefer the aisle seat.
We spoke to Joyce Chang, Flight Attendant at Cathay Pacific to get her thoughts on the pros and cons of aisle vs. window.
Best for: families travelling with little ones, as children will get to enjoy the view and won’t be tempted to run up and down the aisle, which can be dangerous.
- Easy Zzz’s
If you’re hoping to sleep, a window seat gives you something to lean against, eliminating the awkwardness of accidently resting your head on the stranger next to you. You can also position your pillow on the window and curl up against the wall.
- Do Not Disturb
You won’t be disturbed by fellow passengers wanting out. This is great for travellers who like to sleep throughout the flight or those who like to work on their laptop with minimal disruptions.
- Restricted Access
If you’re sitting by the window, it’s difficult to get out to go to the bathroom, access the overhead compartment and stretch your legs – especially if it’s a three seat configuration.
- Extra Chilled
It can be colder if you’re leaning against the side of the aircraft.
Best for: travellers who value freedom, those travelling for business or need to make connecting flights (as you can disembark the plane quicker).
- Quick Exit
As mentioned above, an aisle seat means you have the opportunity to be first off the plane – you can grab your bags and exit quicker.
- Power Position
You can talk to flight attendants with ease. You can also leave your seat and go for a walk down the aisle any time, facilitating easy access to bathrooms and overhead compartments.
- More Disruptions
In an aisle seat, you have to move whenever your row mates want to go to the bathroom or access the overhead compartment, which can be unpleasant when you are sleeping. (This is an exception if you’re the aisle in the centre three of a 777, as there’s only one person without access and they have two ways out – disturbance probability reduced by 50%)
So is there ever the perfect seat? Ultimately it depends on your travel needs and preferences. The best tip is to know your aircraft configuration prior to booking and check in early to secure your preferred seat.