Kimberly P. Yow

Kimberly P. Yow

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Reddit user refuses to switch exit-row seat with pregnant woman: ‘You did exactly the right thing’

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A Reddit user who refused to accommodate a man’s request to switch seats with his pregnant wife many rows behind on the airplane was perfectly fine in rejecting the request and should not feel bad about it, other Reddit users decided. 

Posting on the “AITAH” subreddit on Jan. 13, user “hahahajump” asked the community to weigh in on his story, titled, “AITAH for not giving up my free upgraded exit gate seat to a couple … wanting [to be] sitting together.” 

“AITAH” stands for “Am I the a–hole here.” It’s similar to the “Am I the a–hole” subreddit. 

FLIGHT FRIGHT: FAMILY ASKS PERSON TO SWITCH PLANE SEATS, HE REFUSES — AND BIG TROUBLE ENSUES

In the post, hahahajump (who did not specify gender) described a recent 14-hour flight from Asia, with an economy ticket booked “as normal.” 

Before the flight took off, an attendant offered hahahajump a chance to move to an aisle seat in the emergency exit row — something the person “happily accepted instantly.” 

Hahahajump moved to the new seat, finding a young man in his 20s already sitting in the row. 

When hahahajump began to get settled in the seat, the man “suddenly smiled [at] me,” the Redditor wrote, and asked if his pregnant wife could have the exit-row seat, as the pregnant woman was not comfortable in her existing seat many rows behind. 

Hahahajump wondered why the man had only paid for a premium seat for himself — and not for his own wife.

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“My brain just instantly responded, ‘Oh, but you have a bigger seat. Why don’t you switch with hers?'” wrote hahahajump on Reddit about the experience.

Hahahajump refused to switch seats — and the man’s face “instantly” sank, the Redditor wrote. 

As the fight took off, Hahahajump felt very tired, as described in the post — and “ended up instantly [falling] asleep with my headphones on.”

The writer added, “I woke up 3 or 4 hours later” — only to find a new seatmate: the man’s wife. 

“There was no story after,” hahahajump wrote. “We just had zero communication, which was perfect.” 

While hahahajump did not believe anything was out of line in terms of behavior regarding the seat-switching request, the person’s own family and friends all said the traveler should have given up the seat for the person’s wife so that the couple could sit together. 

“But I really feel, Why [didn’t] the husband switch his [seat] as he was already in the better seat?” wrote hahahajump. “Why me?” 

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Hahahajump added, “I don’t feel extremely bad [about] my decision, but maybe I am wrong.”

Fox News Digital reached out to the Reddit poster as well as an etiquette expert for additional input on the situation. 

On the AITAH subreddit, people can reply to posts and indicate the poster is “NTA” (“Not the A–hole”), “YTA” (“You’re the A–hole”), “NAH” (“No A–holes Here”) or “ESH” (“Everyone Sucks Here”).

Users can “upvote” comments they find helpful, and “downvote” those they do not.

Most of the more than 500 replies to the post assured hahahajump that he or she was “NTA” for keeping the seat upgrade. 

“That was a great question for the man,” said Reddit user “l3ex_G” in the top-upvoted comment. 

This same commenter continued, “Why would he expect a stranger to give up their seat when he wasn’t willing to do it?”

Another user agreed that the response was well-played. 

“You did exactly the right thing,” said Reddit user “FairyPenguinStKilda.” 

“You schooled Mr. Entitled Dude so well. Flawless,” the same commenter continued. 

Others were critical of how the man seemingly planned on exploiting the system for a better seat for his wife. 

“NTA. So he bought only one good seat and hoped to manipulate the person (who presumably paid to upgrade his seat, even though it’s not true in your case) into giving up theirs,” said Reddit user “LabyrinthianPrincess” in another top-upvoted comment. 

“That’s sneaky. Yeah, he should give up his seat,” added this same responder. 

“They were playing on [your] being sympathetic,” said user “OldNCranky75.” 

“It’s the husband’s responsibility to make sure his wife is comfortable.” 

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Other users were surprised a pregnant woman was even permitted to sit in the exit row, as people who are in the exit row must agree to assist during an emergency. 

“If a passenger seated in the exit row is pregnant they are, by law, required to be reseated,” according to the travel website The Points Guy.

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