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It's OK to recline your seat in coach.

Agree. That's why the seats recline in coach, because you can recline them.

Disagree. Just because it's possible doesn't mean you should do it. It's rude.

Yeah so it is rude to watch TV on the plane, or have your air blowing, or ask the person next to you to get up so you can go to the airplane bathroom? 

Yeah but those are things that don't directly inconvenience someone for a long time. Reclining your seat in a tight spot removes someone's comfort for several hours.

Fine but if you recline your seat too then you gain all that space back.

Fine but if everyone does that and creates a domino effect, the last person will get screwed because they're up against a wall.

OK so hundreds of people shouldn't be able to relax on an airplane because one row of people can't? Seems like they could have chosen to not sit all the way in the back.

OK but not everyone wants to recline. The people using a laptop trying to get work done probably want to sit up as straight as possible.

Sure that's not really the problem of the person in front of them. Planes aren't office spaces or coffee shops. If you want to work, get a business class ticket and pay for the extra room.

Sure it's fair to ask for people to pay a bit extra, but business class tickets are often hundreds of dollars more. Not really proportional for the value. And most companies won't pay for their employees to fly business class.

But leisure travelers spent lots of money on their tickets too and they deserve to get the most out of them. If that means reclining and relaxing, they're owed that pleasure.

But the person behind them may also be traveling for leisure, and not wanting to be inconsiderate may be avoiding leaning back so as not to disturb their fellow traveler. Flying is already stressful enough without people being unkind to one another. Reclining is being unkind.


The Devil's Advocate blog is an experimental format that poses a question, then has two opposing voices share their thought process as they defend why they agree or disagree. Learn more about the Devil's Advocate card game here. Or sign-up below to get on the pre-order list.