An airline has introduced a booking system that shows where babies are seated on the plane – so you can make sure to avoid them on those long haul flights.
The Japan airline (JAL) launched the new feature on their booking system so that there is an indication as to which seats are occupied by infants up the age of two.
Any seat occupied by a young child is highlighted with a baby icon during the seat selection stage.
Of course, a lot of airlines allow you to book before you board the flight. However, before now it hasn’t been acknowledged by airlines that not everyone wants to be seated next to a shrieking toddler for a long haul journey.
Despite this being great news for some, it may not be for the badly organised. A downfall to this system is that when the plane begins to fill up, all those who have left it to the last minute will have no choice but to be sat most likely surrounded by lots of screaming babies, confused by their new surroundings.
Unfortunately, the system doesn’t take into account toddlers aged over two – which is pretty strange when this is the age bracket which is probably most likely going to be kicking the back of your seat.
The Japan airline website states: “Passengers traveling with children between 8 days and 2 years old who select their seats on the JAL website will have a child icon displayed on their seats on the seat selection screen.
“This lets other passengers know a child may be sitting there.”
The airline has been quick to point out that this only applies to passengers who book through the carrier’s website.
Another reason you may not get the baby icon seat shown on your display is if there is a change in aircraft, which is understandable.
Although the system is not yet perfect, it hasn’t stopped people taking to Twitter to share their praise for the airline’s new boarding process.
Life just got a modicum better; Japan Airlines (JAL) has introduced a new feature on its booking system that indicates which seats on the plane will be occupied by infants up to the age of two. All airlines should do this.
— Gary F. Collins (@sortilegus) September 27, 2019
I can relate and think @JAL_Official_jp is doing a great job 🙂 Hope other airlines will follow.
— ? ??????? (@135mm_EHV) September 27, 2019
Of course, not everyone is happy about this update. Some people have said that people need to be more tolerant and understanding of parents with young kids.
Twitter user G Sundar said: “They are babies, as we all once were. We need to learn tolerance or will soon start needing a map of seat locations for mouth breathers, droolers, farters, drunks, and perhaps a lot more things in life.”
Deirdra Hamilton added: “Babies are not capable developmentally to ‘plan’ crying or screaming.”
According to research conducted by website flyingwithababy.com, Etihad is one of the most family-friendly airlines. The airline has been noted to provide free pushchairs to use at hubs.
Two other airlines that scored well on the website were Emirates and Gulf Air.