Family Who Tried to Fly 6 People in 3 Seats Were Inconsiderate


airplaneWhat do we all hate about traveling over the holidays? It's expensive to fly the whole family, and it's a huge pain in the tookus to keep all the little ones reasonably quiet and unharmed through the flight. Oh, if only there were a magic spell that could shrink down the kiddies to Lego-man size so we could just stow them quietly in our carry-on luggage!

Okay, I'm just kidding. But one family's attempt to get around the expense of flying is almost as ridiculous. Two parents bought just three airline tickets for a family of six. Since three of their kids qualify as "lap infants," they figured those kids could all just fly free. So you're picturing that older, fourth child as a teenager, right? Nope. Their oldest is 3 years old. Are you as confused as I am?

Let's go over it again: Two parents plus a 3-year-old, 20-month-old twins, and an 8-month-old baby, all sharing just three seats. "We were going to have one of the twins sit with my 3-year-old and my husband and I each hold one of the two remaining children," claims the mother. Which totally makes sense if you think it's a good idea for a 3-year-old and a toddler to share a seat on a cross-country flight. And if you're serving everyone else on the plane free, unlimited Bloody Marys. Needless to say, the crew kicked the family off the flight.

Let's ignore the argument over whether this was legal or not. (The airline says lap infants can fly free only if there's an accompanying adult for each.) This family was flying from North Carolina to Chicago -- that's too long a flight for a family of six to fly squished together in just three already-too-small seats! Those kids are going to be miserable and whiny, and then the rest of the passengers are going to be miserable and whiny. I think it's just unbelievably inconsiderate of these parents. And it's parents like these that make the rest of us more reasonable parents look bad!

Look, I feel for this family. Flying with kids is expensive. But if they chose to have so many kids so close in age, they need to accept the consequences of that decision. Either you shell out for another seat or two, or you say, "Well, we're not flying this year." But inconveniencing everyone else so you can have it all just spreads ill will through the holidays. Bah humbug!

Do you think the airline was right to kick this family off their flight?


Image via Pylon757/Flickr



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nonmember avatar Maria

For safety reasons as well, I agree with what the airlines did. Imagine if something happened to the plane. Would the parents expect the 3 yr old to save their sibling?

Melis... Melissa042807

Isn't it airline policy that a lap child has to be in the lap of an adult? If so, then the airline had every right to kick them off the flight. 

Kritika Kritika

"But if they chose to have so many kids so close in age they need to accept the consequences of that decision."

What a breath of fresh air to read that!

Melis... Melissa042807

Yep, I just checked, policy definitely specifies that a lap child sits in the lap of an adult. That family was violating airline policy. 

Justa... Justamom283

Hell yeah they have a right to put this family off the flight. Your last paragraph says it all.

hotic... hoticedcoffee

Absolutely right to kick them off the flight.  Sadly, I'm sure the family is already shopping for a lawyer so they can collect damages for their "pain and suffering" - which I'm pretty sure is legalspeak for "stupidity and selfishness".

nonmember avatar KingA

Maybe they'll get their fares refunded, which I would suggest they put toward some contraception.

Rhond... RhondaVeggie

A lap baby needs to be with an adult, not a three year old. I think it's the law, never mind airline policy. Suing would be pointless.

smtxc... smtxcowgirl

A family flying to Chicago for the holidays was kicked off a plane because they had too many young children, they say.


Kathy and Jason Fickes, of Charlotte, North Carolina, are the parents of four kids under the age of 3. The couple was looking forward to taking their children to see their grandparents in Chicago for Christmas. But just minutes away from take off, the Fickes family was removed from a U.S. Airways plane.

"I felt we were discriminated against because we had too many children in their eyes," said Kathy Fickes.


Bullsh*t!  They weren't discriminated against!!!  They kicked them off the plane because they weren't following the rules and it was a safety hazard to have one of the babies sharing a seat with the 3 year old.  Dumba$$es.

phoen... phoenixmom2011

It is policy and therefore they had every right. It would never occur to me to have my child "sit" on the lap of my other child as it is I finaly have an excuse for the three seats my husband and I always buy. He is 6' 7" and built like a line backer, I am 5' 11", we had an air line try and sit someone with us once it was actually really funny I was just glad we had our extra ticket with us. Once my son is a little older we will start buying an extra seat again.

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