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Sancho99504
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US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 6:14 pm

I know that there was a post awhile ago about the FAA not wanting to get into the seat size requirements for safety reasons earlier this year. This article implies that Congtess will be passing a bill that will require the FAA to mandate seat size requirements.

I feel that this will have some very unintended consequences that will cost some Congress men and women their jobs in the long run and also make it harder for 40% of the people who fly now to fly in the future.

Many people here know how things were before deregulation. We also know just how expensive it was to fly back then. Seat pitch is definitely something that needs a minimum, but width is kind of a nonstarter. Economy seat width has never been anything to write home about. 707, 727, 737, 747, 757 and 767 have always been about 17.2 inches. DC-8/9 and MD80 have always been around the same. Air Transat and Air Asia X are nuts with going 9 abreast in A330s....
I think if they do end up passing this, the minimum should be no less than 31 inches of pitch. At the most, NK and F9 lose 2 rows of seats, so fares shouldn't rise all that much. Thoughts?


https://www.usatoday.com/story/travel/n ... 403488002/
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neomax
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 6:19 pm

Finally. Long needed move. Good that the gov. is finally doing its job.
 
ltbewr
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 6:27 pm

First of all this bill will likely die in committee and never see a House vote.
I do agree that there should be a minimum seat pitch for almost all commercial aircraft operating within the USA. People are taller and heavier than a generation or 2 ago and tight pitch on long flights can trigger circulation problems like DVT. The USA may have issues with foreign owned airlines that serve the USA and have tight pitch so perhaps we need the international organizations as to airliners set a reasonable minimum.
 
musman9853
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 6:30 pm

yeah, especially considering it could be a potential safety issue
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WashtubFields
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 6:31 pm

I agree it will never get out of committee. But people are fatter, baseball stadiums have made seats wider because of it.
 
EvanWSFO
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 6:38 pm

We are in the midst of a administration that is deregulating everything. I doubt this will go anywhere.
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Judge1310
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 6:39 pm

Back to pre-1978 we go...

Just remember: airlines will do all these things if the public is willing to pay appropriately.
 
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keesje
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 6:43 pm

Seat width alone is not enough.

Airlines can take media for a ride by quietly making the arm rest 0.5 inch wide or reduce aisle width to a minimum.
The amount of passenger for a certain cabin width at shoulder height should be defined.

As well a real leg space. "slim" Seats attacked passenger comfort in recent years, while promising extra space.

All should be widely published per airline & aircraft type. And not by average, another trick to lie with truths.Aircraft manufacturers & airlines seem to together to hide, distract & generalize passenger reality here. Effectively against millions of individuals.

This thread was apparently locked.. https://www.airliners.net/forum/viewtopic.php?t=1351701
No idea who did it & why, Mods? .
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lightsaber
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 6:54 pm

keesje wrote:
Seat width alone is not enough.

Airlines can take media for a ride by quietly making the arm rest 0.5 inch wide or reduce aisle width to a minimum.
The amount of passenger for a certain cabin width at shoulder height should be defined.

As well a real leg space. "slim" Seats attacked passenger comfort in recent years, while promising extra space.

All should be widely published per airline & aircraft type. And not by average, another trick to lie with truths.Aircraft manufacturers & airlines seem to together to hide, distract & generalize passenger reality here. Effectively against millions of individuals.

This thread was apparently locked.. https://www.airliners.net/forum/viewtopic.php?t=1351701
No idea who did it & why, Mods? .

We are working to automatically lock threads that have gone unposted for a long time. See forum rules on thread bumping. But post in site related for such questions. I'll allow, but if it derails the thread...

Lightsaber
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Blerg
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 7:15 pm

This is a great initiative as airlines have lost their compass when it comes to such things. Yes, people want lower fares but at the same time we are presented with a fare structure where upper flying classes tend to be extremely expensive thus unattainable for many.

Also, if airlines are degrading the quality of flying then they shouldn't overcharge passengers to fly with them. Ok, you want a 30' seat pitch in economy long-haul? Sure, but in that case you can't charge people more than €500 to fly across the Atlantic.
 
clrd4t8koff
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 7:16 pm

ltbewr wrote:
First of all this bill will likely die in committee and never see a House vote.
I do agree that there should be a minimum seat pitch for almost all commercial aircraft operating within the USA. People are taller and heavier than a generation or 2 ago and tight pitch on long flights can trigger circulation problems like DVT. The USA may have issues with foreign owned airlines that serve the USA and have tight pitch so perhaps we need the international organizations as to airliners set a reasonable minimum.


If this were to ever pass why couldn’t the US govt require any international airlines wanting to serve the US to adhere to the requirements. This way they wouldn’t have to change their whole fleet, just their international aircraft. Seems reasonable. Or they can stop flying to the US and let the airlines who comply operate those routes.
 
2175301
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 7:21 pm

I personally believe some sort of minimum seat width/pitch standard should be developed. In part to ensure typical passenger safety and evacuation times.

This is not anything close to the pre-1978 regulation days; and will have minimal effect overall. We have minimum door size requirements, and many other minimums (or maximums) that affect aircraft design and utilization.

Have a great day,
 
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vanguard737
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 7:45 pm

clrd4t8koff wrote:
ltbewr wrote:
First of all this bill will likely die in committee and never see a House vote.
I do agree that there should be a minimum seat pitch for almost all commercial aircraft operating within the USA. People are taller and heavier than a generation or 2 ago and tight pitch on long flights can trigger circulation problems like DVT. The USA may have issues with foreign owned airlines that serve the USA and have tight pitch so perhaps we need the international organizations as to airliners set a reasonable minimum.


If this were to ever pass why couldn’t the US govt require any international airlines wanting to serve the US to adhere to the requirements. This way they wouldn’t have to change their whole fleet, just their international aircraft. Seems reasonable. Or they can stop flying to the US and let the airlines who comply operate those routes.


Because you cannot assume that the US is the only country in the world that has a right to dictate a minimum seat pitch. So what if the US mandated no aircraft regardless of airline can land in the US with seat pitch below 30 inches, and then the EU says minimum seat pitch must be 31 inches, and Australia says minimum seat pitch must be 32 inches, and Brazil says minimum seat pitch must be 33 inches. Does it really sound reasonable to expect the worlds airlines to maintain specific subfleets only capable of flying to select countries?
319 320 321 359 717 722 732 733 735 73G 738 739 744 748 752 753 763 764 772 773 788 789 781 DC9 DC10 MD80 B1900 S340 E120 E145 E170 E175 CRJ CR7
 
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neomax
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 7:51 pm

lightsaber wrote:
We are working to automatically lock threads that have gone unposted for a long time. See forum rules on thread bumping. But post in site related for such questions. I'll allow, but if it derails the thread...

Lightsaber


How long?
 
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MSPSXMFLIER
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 7:53 pm

I'm all in favor with making necessary and common sense changes to all of the issues raised in the article, but I'm a realist and seeing how Congress is incapable of handling other, more serious national concerns, this idea will go nowhere at all for the remainder of this administration. Until the crippling, polarized mentalities of our elected officials changes, nothing will.
 
910A
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 7:55 pm

All of you that said it won't get out of committee, you're right; if you understand how Congress worked funding bills they don't go to a normal committee at all. This is a must pass bill, and the house and senate members have already agreed to this..From the article

The proposals are included in a compromise FAA funding plan released by House and Senate lawmakers on Saturday. Congress faces a Sept. 30 deadline to keep FAA programs running, and the Senate must either to take up the bill this week or both chambers will need to pass a short-term extension.
 
Sancho99504
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 8:10 pm

17.2 inch wide seats have been around for nearly 69 years, if not longer. Most Airbus operators in the US use the standard 18 inch wide seats on their aircraft. Before the modifications, DL Airbus used 17.2 inch seats inherited from NW because their whole fleet used the exact same economy seats, 727, 747, 757, DC-9, DC-10, A320 and A330. The 10 abreast 777 and 9 abreast 787 still have 17.2 inch wide seats, albeit down from the 18.5 inch in 9 or 8 abreast respectively.
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Sancho99504
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 8:13 pm

Blerg wrote:
This is a great initiative as airlines have lost their compass when it comes to such things. Yes, people want lower fares but at the same time we are presented with a fare structure where upper flying classes tend to be extremely expensive thus unattainable for many.

Also, if airlines are degrading the quality of flying then they shouldn't overcharge passengers to fly with them. Ok, you want a 30' seat pitch in economy long-haul? Sure, but in that case you can't charge people more than €500 to fly across the Atlantic.


It will surely cost you more than €1,000 to fly across the pond if airlines are forced to remove upwards of 40 seats to comply with pitch/width requirements. That doesn't include any fees, of which there will probably be increases and additional fees attached.
kill 'em all and let God sort 'em out-USMC
 
georgiaame
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 8:48 pm

And if the right people are paid off, which is how Washington works, and they mandate15.5 inches wide, then guess what happens!
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slcdeltarumd11
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 8:58 pm

Any law could easily grandfather planes built after a certain time etc etc there would be many ways to grandfather in setups so that airlines wouldn't need to reconfugure anything. Could be a moving forward situation.

I have little expectation that any law would pass. If it did it would be much lower than what is proposed here. If you know anything about DC you need wiggle room. If anything passed it would be at or smaller than the new slim no room seats everyone is installing.
 
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CarlosSi
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 9:11 pm

Hmmm I’m against it. Maybe pass legislation that would require airlines to provide a minimum amount of seats of “an adequate seat width/pitch” at a reasonable price; I noticed United’s 77Ws have economy, with the next class up being economy plus, but only having 17” of width. Perhaps require a third or a quarter of seats to be “regular economy” (minimum 31” and 17.2” as this is about average), so perhaps the economy section of a plane could be 18 seats standard 31P17.2W, 72 below 31P17.2W. I’d feel bad for Spirit, and perhaps that would make Southwest and airlines that already have more than enough adequate space less competitive if competitors have to match their space.
 
jayunited
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 9:11 pm

keesje wrote:
Seat width alone is not enough.

Airlines can take media for a ride by quietly making the arm rest 0.5 inch wide or reduce aisle width to a minimum.
The amount of passenger for a certain cabin width at shoulder height should be defined.
As well a real leg space. "slim" Seats attacked passenger comfort in recent years, while promising extra space.


I don't know if it is the governments job to get involved in the issue of seat width. I'm on the fence over seat pitch simply because I don't know what seat pitch the manufactures are using during the testing and certification process.
As far as seat width for the most part the width hasn't changed (it's between 17-18.5) and the issue is American's are getting fatter and we expect the airlines to accommodate our extra girth by increasing seat width while we as a country do nothing to decrease our overall size. To have the government step in an mandate a seat width is ridiculous because as a country even though many have tried to tackle America's obesity epidemic most have failed. Before you ask the airlines to standardize a seat with you must first ask American's to get our weight under control because as long a our weight continues to rise, seats will continue to feel smaller and smaller. I'm not trying to come off as mean or insensitive, I'm not at my ideal weight of 165 pounds. Right now I'm pushing 198 pounds, but in my mind as long as I'm under 200 pounds I'm good. Any time I hit or exceed 200 pounds I make some temporary changes to my diet to drop below 200 but I'm not giving up my fried chicken, pizza and cheesecake for the rest of my life.

If we look at what US airlines are doing both domestically and internationally they are giving passengers more choice with first class, the introduction of premium economy, economy plus (or the equivalent) and regular economy. Passengers make the choice what seat they want based on a number of things but the most important thing is money. I'm over 6 feet tall and whenever I buy tickets I always pay the extra fee for economy plus and it doesn't matter how long the domestic flight is I'm buying economy plus because I want the extra leg room and depending on the difference in price the and length of the flight I'll even book first class domestically. International first and business class may still cost thousands and thousands of dollars, but domestically especially within the contiguous United States first class has come way down in price. Later on this year my partner and I are going to Miami (12 night cruise) UA was expensive even with the discount and we only have 2 nonstop flights, but AA nonstop was charging $225 each way for main cabin extra but for only $50 dollars more each way we could book first class. Guess what we booked first class on American Airlines round trip for $550 dollars per person including tax. People want to know why is has become so difficult to score a domestic up grade its because airlines are aggressively pricing domestic first class instead of giving away first class for free.

If you want more space, more leg room or a wider seat, on a domestic flight all you have to do is buy it. Buy first class or buy economy plus because air travel domestically especially within the contiguous United States has never been more affordable than what it is today. There is an airline and a seat to mach almost any budget domestically and i think the government should not be involved in this issue becuse all they will do is make air travel more expensive.
 
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CarlosSi
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 9:12 pm

I’m sure a percentage of people don’t mind being crammed for a lower fare (budget folks, skinny people like myself), but I’m sure a good number of folks would fork out a little more money for a little more space. If good seats aren’t available, better look into other flights...
 
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keesje
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 9:54 pm

I remember airlines started to introduce 10 abreast on their 777 and told the passengers they would only loose an inch in seatwidth and wouldn’t notice. It seems most people / media / analysts absorbed the it without further questioning.The comfort ratings from their internal passenger surveys tanked, but the aircraft were full, so better ignore.
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PlanesNTrains
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 10:29 pm

I guess I'm confused - airlines like Jetblue have the most comfortable cabins yet not always the best yields. Airlines like Delta have loads of branded aircraft with seats under the much-lauded 18"and make money hand over fist. Clearly seat size is not number one on people's agenda when it comes to flying. They want price, schedule, FF points, perks - and a comfy seat. When forced to choose, which are they choosing first?
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SurlyBonds
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 10:52 pm

Sancho99504 wrote:
Many people here know how things were before deregulation. We also know just how expensive it was to fly back then.


Before deregulation, the CAB allocated routes to carriers. An airline couldn't fly just anywhere it wanted; it had to get CAB permission. In practice this often meant a duopoly on routes, and there few hub-and-spoke route. Deregulation has never meant "airlines don't get regulated"; there are all sorts of FARs, as we all know perfectly well. It meant the end of *route* regulation.

I submit that this had a lot more to do with expensive airfares, more than mandatory seat pitch.

I would also observe that seat pitch did not decrease markedly after deregulation, which happened in the Carter administration. Decreasing seat pitch did not really start until the mid-1990s, and it arguably did not begin in earnest until after 9/11. That is a good 20-30 years after deregulation, and a good 20-30 years after airfares began to decrease.

It has always been within the purview of government to exercise what constitutional law scholars call the "police power" -- that is, to regulate the health, safety, and morals of the country. Pitch size certainly has implications for the first two of those.

IMO lavatory space needs to be adequate to allow normal size humans in 2018 to use the lavatory. At this risk of grossing people out, all of these new space-saving lavs have fecal matter all over them every time I have used them, because people cannot fit into them. That is outrageous, and clearly incompatible with sound health practices.
 
SurlyBonds
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 10:57 pm

Judge1310 wrote:
Back to pre-1978 we go...

Just remember: airlines will do all these things if the public is willing to pay appropriately.


You're apparently unaware of the idea of "collective action problems." There are plenty of regulatory outcomes that obtain if, absent regulation, people would pay for them.

DC's metrorail has tactile flooring along the edge of its platforms. This flooring allows blind people to tell where to stop walking, so that they don't fall off the platform and get hit by a train, a la Zoe Barnes in HOUSE OF CARDS. (I would hope that, even if you're on Team Underwood on TV, we all agree that this is a Good Thing in real life.) T

his outcome would undoubtedly be possible if every commuter voluntarily coughed up an extra 5 cents per ride; but they don't, so governments take regulatory action mandating it.
 
Judge1310
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 11:04 pm

Actually, I'm quite aware of such a concept. What you may be unaware of is the DC Metro does not equate to airlines, i.e. air carriers aren't public transportation services. A fundamental argument in this issue is that too often, folks like to compare air carriers to public transport systems when they are two different concepts of transport.
 
SurlyBonds
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 11:07 pm

910A wrote:
All of you that said it won't get out of committee, you're right; if you understand how Congress worked funding bills they don't go to a normal committee at all. This is a must pass bill, and the house and senate members have already agreed to this..


I thought this was an authorization bill (and thus referred to the Transportation committee), not an appropriations bill?

Nonetheless, Congress is quite capable of acting cobra-quick when it needs to reauthorize programs -- and thus minimum seat pitch requirement has apparently been inserted into t he broader FAA reauthorization bill. So as a stand-alone measure, it will not go to committee. This is how Congress often works. Members push their agenda by introducing stand-alone bills. Contra SCHOOLHOUSE ROCK, standalone bills rarely work their way to the president's desk on their own. Instead, they get folded into omnibus bills. That's what is happening here.
 
SurlyBonds
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 11:08 pm

Judge1310 wrote:
Actually, I'm quite aware of such a concept. What you may be unaware of is the DC Metro does not equate to airlines, i.e. air carriers aren't public transportation services. A fundamental argument in this issue is that too often, folks like to compare air carriers to public transport systems when they are two different concepts of transport.


Which is irrelevant. They are both classic collective action problems, regardless of the fact that the method of transport differs. And you could cite hundreds of example that have zero to do with transportation at all. A classic rationale for government regulation is to overcome collective action problems.
 
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Jouhou
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 11:09 pm

Judge1310 wrote:
Back to pre-1978 we go...

Just remember: airlines will do all these things if the public is willing to pay appropriately.


The option frequently does not exist, so I don't know what you are saying. It's pay for God awful economy seats or pay 3x as much for business class. Some airlines can upgrade pitch for a price but not width. So that's actually a lie on your part.
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Sancho99504
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 11:11 pm

SurlyBonds wrote:
Sancho99504 wrote:
Many people here know how things were before deregulation. We also know just how expensive it was to fly back then.


Before deregulation, the CAB allocated routes to carriers. An airline couldn't fly just anywhere it wanted; it had to get CAB permission. In practice this often meant a duopoly on routes, and there few hub-and-spoke route. Deregulation has never meant "airlines don't get regulated"; there are all sorts of FARs, as we all know perfectly well. It meant the end of *route* regulation.

I submit that this had a lot more to do with expensive airfares, more than mandatory seat pitch.

I would also observe that seat pitch did not decrease markedly after deregulation, which happened in the Carter administration. Decreasing seat pitch did not really start until the mid-1990s, and it arguably did not begin in earnest until after 9/11. That is a good 20-30 years after deregulation, and a good 20-30 years after airfares began to decrease.

It has always been within the purview of government to exercise what constitutional law scholars call the "police power" -- that is, to regulate the health, safety, and morals of the country. Pitch size certainly has implications for the first two of those.

IMO lavatory space needs to be adequate to allow normal size humans in 2018 to use the lavatory. At this risk of grossing people out, all of these new space-saving lavs have fecal matter all over them every time I have used them, because people cannot fit into them. That is outrageous, and clearly incompatible with sound health practices.

I never viewed deregulation as meaning airlines would not have any regulations. I know before airlines could on fly route x to d and had to charge a minimum fare. The thing is, if they start here, where will it stop?
I'm with you 100% on lavatories. I recently experienced a spaceflex lav and was not amused. I had to turn sideways because my shoulders would not fit thru the door. My arms were touching both walls while I did my business.


There are a multitude of options available for people to have more space. Spirit has big front seats, frontier has more legroom seats, JetBlue has even more room seats. The big 3 have more legroom seats, plus first class. We are where we are because people wanted cheap tickets. Airlines had fire sales up the wazoo after 9/11 and most people fell in love. When they went back up, demand fell to a point that the higher fares wouldn't make profitability. All in all, airlines created this environment and people accepted it until Kate Hanni....
kill 'em all and let God sort 'em out-USMC
 
washingtonflyer
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 11:13 pm

Zoe had an external force working against her...

As to pitch and width, IIRC a standard seat pitch back in the 1980s and into the 1990s ranged from 32 to 34 inches. Average non-premium (i.e, not typically reserved for elite FFs) is 31 inches and is slipping to 30 inches. I've been on Jetstar flights in NZ where the pitch is 29 inches and it felt -tight-.

As to seat width, cabins in virtually all twin engine wing mounted aircraft (737s and 320 family) have been 3x3 for ever. Even the prior generation of 727s and 707s and DC8s were 3x3. I think where the seat width arguments are becoming of concern are in the 777 and 787. There a lot of reports out there on the 777 in a 3-4-3 configuration and the 787 in a 3-3-3 configuration. The 3-4-3 configuration is especially tight. And lets remember, you're not flying 3 hours from DFW to LAX; you're flying 13 hours from DFW to NRT.
 
clrd4t8koff
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 11:13 pm

vanguard737 wrote:
clrd4t8koff wrote:
ltbewr wrote:
First of all this bill will likely die in committee and never see a House vote.
I do agree that there should be a minimum seat pitch for almost all commercial aircraft operating within the USA. People are taller and heavier than a generation or 2 ago and tight pitch on long flights can trigger circulation problems like DVT. The USA may have issues with foreign owned airlines that serve the USA and have tight pitch so perhaps we need the international organizations as to airliners set a reasonable minimum.


If this were to ever pass why couldn’t the US govt require any international airlines wanting to serve the US to adhere to the requirements. This way they wouldn’t have to change their whole fleet, just their international aircraft. Seems reasonable. Or they can stop flying to the US and let the airlines who comply operate those routes.


Because you cannot assume that the US is the only country in the world that has a right to dictate a minimum seat pitch. So what if the US mandated no aircraft regardless of airline can land in the US with seat pitch below 30 inches, and then the EU says minimum seat pitch must be 31 inches, and Australia says minimum seat pitch must be 32 inches, and Brazil says minimum seat pitch must be 33 inches. Does it really sound reasonable to expect the worlds airlines to maintain specific subfleets only capable of flying to select countries?


Why is that any different than airports around the world spending millions to adhere to the different security requirements for flights to the US vs flights to any other country. Do you know how much airports have spent to accommodate US requirements? Why would it be any different for airlines if the US were to require a certain seat size.
 
Judge1310
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 11:17 pm

Maybe I'm confused here but I'm a 6'2 (188cm), 190lbs (86kg for our metric friends) guy that has no problem using lavs on aircraft lavs larger than a CRJ-200.

What are you all doing in there?!
 
Judge1310
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 11:22 pm

washingtonflyer wrote:
Zoe had an external force working against her...

As to pitch and width, IIRC a standard seat pitch back in the 1980s and into the 1990s ranged from 32 to 34 inches. Average non-premium (i.e, not typically reserved for elite FFs) is 31 inches and is slipping to 30 inches. I've been on Jetstar flights in NZ where the pitch is 29 inches and it felt -tight-.

As to seat width, cabins in virtually all twin engine wing mounted aircraft (737s and 320 family) have been 3x3 for ever. Even the prior generation of 727s and 707s and DC8s were 3x3. I think where the seat width arguments are becoming of concern are in the 777 and 787. There a lot of reports out there on the 777 in a 3-4-3 configuration and the 787 in a 3-3-3 configuration. The 3-4-3 configuration is especially tight. And lets remember, you're not flying 3 hours from DFW to LAX; you're flying 13 hours from DFW to NRT.


Thank you! Narrow body aircraft have almost always been 3X3...Stop trying to regulate business when it comes to personal issues, If one is getting bigger that's one's own issue. Seats get bigger and then people will complain about not being able to get themselves down the aisle...once again, personal problems.
 
dz09
Posts: 433
Joined: Mon Sep 11, 2006 1:20 am

Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 11:34 pm

Sancho99504 wrote:
Blerg wrote:
This is a great initiative as airlines have lost their compass when it comes to such things. Yes, people want lower fares but at the same time we are presented with a fare structure where upper flying classes tend to be extremely expensive thus unattainable for many.

Also, if airlines are degrading the quality of flying then they shouldn't overcharge passengers to fly with them. Ok, you want a 30' seat pitch in economy long-haul? Sure, but in that case you can't charge people more than €500 to fly across the Atlantic.


It will surely cost you more than €1,000 to fly across the pond if airlines are forced to remove upwards of 40 seats to comply with pitch/width requirements. That doesn't include any fees, of which there will probably be increases and additional fees attached.


where do you get the 40 seat figure? I do not think the seat pitch is an issue with most US airlines except perhaps with Spirit, frontier and other Ulcc. the seat pitch is definitely a problem with foreign carriers like AF, LH and BA. the problem here in the US is with the seat width, more specifically with the 10 abreast on a 777, 9 abreast on a 787 or an A330.
 
dz09
Posts: 433
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 11:37 pm

clrd4t8koff wrote:
vanguard737 wrote:
clrd4t8koff wrote:

If this were to ever pass why couldn’t the US govt require any international airlines wanting to serve the US to adhere to the requirements. This way they wouldn’t have to change their whole fleet, just their international aircraft. Seems reasonable. Or they can stop flying to the US and let the airlines who comply operate those routes.


Because you cannot assume that the US is the only country in the world that has a right to dictate a minimum seat pitch. So what if the US mandated no aircraft regardless of airline can land in the US with seat pitch below 30 inches, and then the EU says minimum seat pitch must be 31 inches, and Australia says minimum seat pitch must be 32 inches, and Brazil says minimum seat pitch must be 33 inches. Does it really sound reasonable to expect the worlds airlines to maintain specific subfleets only capable of flying to select countries?


Why is that any different than airports around the world spending millions to adhere to the different security requirements for flights to the US vs flights to any other country. Do you know how much airports have spent to accommodate US requirements? Why would it be any different for airlines if the US were to require a certain seat size.


the US is a very lucrative market and foreign airlines will quickly comply with whatever regulations the US imposes.
 
burnsie28
Posts: 5283
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 11:37 pm

Sancho99504 wrote:
I know that there was a post awhile ago about the FAA not wanting to get into the seat size requirements for safety reasons earlier this year. This article implies that Congtess will be passing a bill that will require the FAA to mandate seat size requirements.

I feel that this will have some very unintended consequences that will cost some Congress men and women their jobs in the long run and also make it harder for 40% of the people who fly now to fly in the future.
I think if they do end up passing this, the minimum should be no less than 31 inches of pitch. At the most, NK and F9 lose 2 rows of seats, so fares shouldn't rise all that much. Thoughts?


https://www.usatoday.com/story/travel/n ... 403488002/


I would bet congress says 28" minimum. If you went 31" you would have to reconfigured much of the fleet on every US airline. Delta already seems to be moving to 31" minimum going forward.

On Frontier's 320, if you were to go to 31" minimum while keeping the stretch seating you need at least 66". Which means at least 3 rows of seat. That's 18 seats, that's a TON of revenue for airlines like Frontier. Spirit's configuration would be at least 78". Even worse for them is that the exit rows will cause probably another row to be removed or they would have to do Delta 739 style overwing exit rows. 18 seats per plane on each of their fleet. You are talking big air fare changes and model changes. The US still has a lot more seat pitch than a lot of carriers in Europe and South America.

neomax wrote:
Finally. Long needed move. Good that the gov. is finally doing its job.


Or the US economy was too cheap and forced airlines into this situation. If airfares were higher before everything hit the fan over the past 18 years or so, it probably wouldn't have even been a thought to go that low. Look at what F9 and NK were before, basically LCC with more or less normal leg room.

musman9853 wrote:
yeah, especially considering it could be a potential safety issue


With Spirit and Frontier going to 28" etc, they have to demonstrate to the FAA that they can get everyone out in the 90 seconds before approved to fly. Aircraft manufacturers do full evacs at max certified to prove they can get everyone out in time.

keesje wrote:
All should be widely published per airline & aircraft type. And not by average, another trick to lie with truths.Aircraft manufacturers & airlines seem to together to hide, distract & generalize passenger reality here. Effectively against millions of individuals.


What airlines advertise average? Go to any of the big US airlines website they give the inches range.

Blerg wrote:
This is a great initiative as airlines have lost their compass when it comes to such things. Yes, people want lower fares but at the same time we are presented with a fare structure where upper flying classes tend to be extremely expensive thus unattainable for many.


Problem is if you make that regulation, those "upper flying classes" become the cost in economy now.

cird4t8koff wrote:
If this were to ever pass why couldn’t the US govt require any international airlines wanting to serve the US to adhere to the requirements. This way they wouldn’t have to change their whole fleet, just their international aircraft. Seems reasonable. Or they can stop flying to the US and let the airlines who comply operate those routes.


Same reason not all EASA rules can be enforced to US and other non-EASA airlines. For instance, in Europe you can't have bags under the seat in front of you for TTL in the exit row. In the US you can. So start doing that then everything goes back and forth. If the other carriers were neglecting maintenance and stuff yes, but this no.

Now there will be some issues that will effect aircraft sales too, this could hurt Boeing. If this is passed and say Ryanair operates planes below FAA minimum then Boeing won't be able to get the plane certified. So option A is for Ryanair to fly the aircraft empty to Europe and install on their own, which is expensive and puts more risk/liability on the airlines since they would have to certify it on their own paperwork or Option B go to a different aircraft supplier.

IMO if this passes they will say 28" of pitch, otherwise they could potentially put two or more US airlines out of business quickly. Then we get into another problem of no competition.
 
dz09
Posts: 433
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 11:49 pm

jayunited wrote:
keesje wrote:
Seat width alone is not enough.

Airlines can take media for a ride by quietly making the arm rest 0.5 inch wide or reduce aisle width to a minimum.
The amount of passenger for a certain cabin width at shoulder height should be defined.
As well a real leg space. "slim" Seats attacked passenger comfort in recent years, while promising extra space.


I don't know if it is the governments job to get involved in the issue of seat width. I'm on the fence over seat pitch simply because I don't know what seat pitch the manufactures are using during the testing and certification process.
As far as seat width for the most part the width hasn't changed (it's between 17-18.5) and the issue is American's are getting fatter and we expect the airlines to accommodate our extra girth by increasing seat width while we as a country do nothing to decrease our overall size. To have the government step in an mandate a seat width is ridiculous because as a country even though many have tried to tackle America's obesity epidemic most have failed. Before you ask the airlines to standardize a seat with you must first ask American's to get our weight under control because as long a our weight continues to rise, seats will continue to feel smaller and smaller. I'm not trying to come off as mean or insensitive, I'm not at my ideal weight of 165 pounds. Right now I'm pushing 198 pounds, but in my mind as long as I'm under 200 pounds I'm good. Any time I hit or exceed 200 pounds I make some temporary changes to my diet to drop below 200 but I'm not giving up my fried chicken, pizza and cheesecake for the rest of my life.

If we look at what US airlines are doing both domestically and internationally they are giving passengers more choice with first class, the introduction of premium economy, economy plus (or the equivalent) and regular economy. Passengers make the choice what seat they want based on a number of things but the most important thing is money. I'm over 6 feet tall and whenever I buy tickets I always pay the extra fee for economy plus and it doesn't matter how long the domestic flight is I'm buying economy plus because I want the extra leg room and depending on the difference in price the and length of the flight I'll even book first class domestically. International first and business class may still cost thousands and thousands of dollars, but domestically especially within the contiguous United States first class has come way down in price. Later on this year my partner and I are going to Miami (12 night cruise) UA was expensive even with the discount and we only have 2 nonstop flights, but AA nonstop was charging $225 each way for main cabin extra but for only $50 dollars more each way we could book first class. Guess what we booked first class on American Airlines round trip for $550 dollars per person including tax. People want to know why is has become so difficult to score a domestic up grade its because airlines are aggressively pricing domestic first class instead of giving away first class for free.

If you want more space, more leg room or a wider seat, on a domestic flight all you have to do is buy it. Buy first class or buy economy plus because air travel domestically especially within the contiguous United States has never been more affordable than what it is today. There is an airline and a seat to mach almost any budget domestically and i think the government should not be involved in this issue becuse all they will do is make air travel more expensive.


you're making it sound like the passengers are becoming greedy. They're not. All we want is to stop decreasing the pitch and the seat widths. we're not asking for wider seats or more legroom. just leave what has worked for decades the hell alone. I work for myself and try to fly first class whenever i can afford it, but i'm not going to take a second mortgage on my house to fly first or business to Shanghai for example.
 
910A
Posts: 1881
Joined: Sat Apr 04, 2015 2:11 am

Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 11:58 pm

Judge1310 wrote:
Maybe I'm confused here but I'm a 6'2 (188cm), 190lbs (86kg for our metric friends) guy that has no problem using lavs on aircraft lavs larger than a CRJ-200.

What are you all doing in there?!


Have you attempted to use the F lavs on the AA 78M?
 
WeatherPilot
Posts: 557
Joined: Sun Jun 25, 2017 1:51 am

Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Sun Sep 23, 2018 11:59 pm

I don't think regulation of seat size and pitch is needed. What should happen is a law that requires clearer advertising and disclosure of what the customer is buying. Next to the class of ticket the customer is buying there should be listed conspiciously something showing the actual size of the seat. This lets the airlines continue their respective business models while better informing the customer and ultimately still letting the market be the final determinator.
 
910A
Posts: 1881
Joined: Sat Apr 04, 2015 2:11 am

Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Mon Sep 24, 2018 12:01 am

Judge1310 wrote:
Maybe I'm confused here but I'm a 6'2 (188cm), 190lbs (86kg for our metric friends) guy that has no problem using lavs on aircraft lavs larger than a CRJ-200.

What are you all doing in there?!


Have you attempted to use the F lavs on the AA 78M?
 
speedbird52
Posts: 1013
Joined: Sat Nov 26, 2016 5:30 am

Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Mon Sep 24, 2018 12:06 am

Judge1310 wrote:
Back to pre-1978 we go...

Just remember: airlines will do all these things if the public is willing to pay appropriately.

The public is never going to be willing to pay appropriately for basic humanity. If I told someone I could get them a ten dollar flight to London but they needed to be stripped naked and have their wrists bound to a cross for 12 hours I promise you they will take me up on the offer. There will come a point where seat sizes have shrunk to a point where a large portion of the populations health will be in danger.
 
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keesje
Posts: 13827
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Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Mon Sep 24, 2018 12:06 am

burnsie28 wrote:
keesje wrote:
All should be widely published per airline & aircraft type. And not by average, another trick to lie with truths.Aircraft manufacturers & airlines seem to together to hide, distract & generalize passenger reality here. Effectively against millions of individuals.


What airlines advertise average? Go to any of the big US airlines website they give the inches range.


All airlines use average. The seat pitches and widths vary across the aircraft. Last row often have the smallest pitches & no recline.

For 777 seat width 9 to 10 abreast in reality costed the 9 original seat 2 inch each. The extra 20 inch for the extra seat has to be found somewhere,
Narrowed armrests, narrowed aisles where you are pushed into, continuous shoulder rubbing. The passenger surveys scream out.
But the aircraft are full & there's no way back. So Boeing & the airlines hope people get used & it goes away.
But Boeing is spending big dollars in 777x cabin widening by 4 inch for a reason. And 777 operators like BA, DL and SQ stayed 9 abreast on their 777s.
"Never mistake motion for action." Ernest Hemingway
 
speedbird52
Posts: 1013
Joined: Sat Nov 26, 2016 5:30 am

Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Mon Sep 24, 2018 12:06 am

910A wrote:
Judge1310 wrote:
Maybe I'm confused here but I'm a 6'2 (188cm), 190lbs (86kg for our metric friends) guy that has no problem using lavs on aircraft lavs larger than a CRJ-200.

What are you all doing in there?!


Have you attempted to use the F lavs on the AA 78M?

Hell, even the F lavs on the newer Alaska 737 NGs are nearly impossible to use
 
speedbird52
Posts: 1013
Joined: Sat Nov 26, 2016 5:30 am

Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Mon Sep 24, 2018 12:08 am

keesje wrote:
burnsie28 wrote:
keesje wrote:
All should be widely published per airline & aircraft type. And not by average, another trick to lie with truths.Aircraft manufacturers & airlines seem to together to hide, distract & generalize passenger reality here. Effectively against millions of individuals.


What airlines advertise average? Go to any of the big US airlines website they give the inches range.


All airlines use average. The seat pitches and widths vary across the aircraft. Last row often have the smallest pitches & no recline.

For 777 seat width 9 to 10 abreast in reality costed the 9 original seat 2 inch each. The extra 20 inch for the extra seat has to be found somewhere,
Narrowed armrests, narrowed aisles where you are pushed into, continuous shoulder rubbing. The passenger surveys scream out.
But the aircraft are full & there's no way back. So Boeing & the airlines hope people get used & it goes away.
But Boeing is spending big dollars in 777x cabin widening by 4 inch for a reason. And 777 operators like BA, DL and SQ stayed 9 abreast on their 777s.

BA unfortunately intend to switch to 10 abreast, but BA is basically a more expensive and international Easyjet anyway
 
frmrCapCadet
Posts: 4086
Joined: Thu May 29, 2008 8:24 pm

Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Mon Sep 24, 2018 12:11 am

My continued comment: airlines (and Orbitz or Travelocity) should advertise what they are selling. Just as I generally prefer a 3 star motel, I would like to know what kind of seat I am buying. I find a typical WN seat to be a 3 star. Flying legacy airlines typically 2 star or less regardless of what I pay for a Y seat.
Buffet: the airline business...has eaten up capital...like..no other (business)
 
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Jouhou
Posts: 2539
Joined: Tue May 24, 2016 4:16 am

Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Mon Sep 24, 2018 12:35 am

How about premium economy with 19-20" wide seats. Is that so much to ask for? Airlines offer dirt cheap and insanely expensive seats with nothing in between except for select long haul airlines.
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jayunited
Posts: 2762
Joined: Sat Jan 05, 2013 12:03 am

Re: US Congress working on a bill that would force FAA to mandate minimum seat size

Mon Sep 24, 2018 12:37 am

dz09 wrote:
you're making it sound like the passengers are becoming greedy. They're not. All we want is to stop decreasing the pitch and the seat widths. we're not asking for wider seats or more legroom. just leave what has worked for decades the hell alone. I work for myself and try to fly first class whenever i can afford it, but i'm not going to take a second mortgage on my house to fly first or business to Shanghai for example.


Passengers are greedy they want what they haven't paid for. Passengers want to blame everyone but themselves for what has/is taking place in the industry as it pertains to seat width and seat pitch. These low cost carriers didn't just pop up overnight these low cost carriers didn't just decided to reduce seat pitch to 28-29 inches overnight. They have done this over time and as low cost carriers grow in popularity and siphon passengers away from the larger legacy carriers these carriers have to respond to what the market is demanding. As long as people continue to fly airlines like NK airlines like UA, AA and DL will have to respond and the only way to bring down the cost is to spread that cost around but to do that the airlines have to add more seats.
Airlines bare some responsibility but the bulk of what's happening in this industry in terms of passengers space while on board is the passengers own fault people think air travel should be cheap and will buy the cheapest ticket they can find. Why do you think websites like Priceline and bookit have become so popular because people want to compare prices and will in most cases book the cheapest fare.
Many of us may have been asleep at the wheel when these changes started domestically years ago but just look at whats happening internationally as more and more low cost carriers are flying across the Atlantic and Pacific. So far legacy carriers both domestic and international have largely ignored these low cost carriers but as more and more passengers are siphoned away drawn to the low cost no frills carrier at some point the legacies will have to respond. Right now these low cost carriers offer decent room on international flights but as their cost rise and as fuel prices go up they will look at ways to keep prices low which means adding seats and as long as passengers choose with their wallet the lowest cost airlines will continue to respond by cramming in more passengers until you get to the point that you can't fit any more passenger on the plane.

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