Should lap babies be banned on planes?

The National Transportation Safety Board is asking the Federal Aviation Administration to require children under 2 to be in separate seats and restraints on airplanes.

The board is using a deadly plane crash in Montana to revive the debate about whether infants and toddler should be allowed to not buy a ticket and sit on their parents’ laps during flights.

From The Associated Press:

“A 10-seater plane crashed in Butte in March 2009, killing all 14 people aboard, including 7 children.”

Here’s the kicker:

“The FAA says it will look at the new recommendation. In the past, it has said the cost of buying an extra airline ticket could force some families with small children to take to the highways instead of the skies, which would result in even more child injuries and deaths.”

I am really torn on this topic. I can completely understand parents not wanting to pay full price for infant and toddler seat especially when you know you are going to be holding them a lot. (The toddler wants to run and the baby is going to want to be comforted because of the pressure changes.)

When I worked for a trade magazine in New York I covered a story at an FAA training facility (I think it was FAA) and then took me through a simulated plane crash. They talked a lot about turbulence and how people make light of it but that you should always have your seat belt on in your seat.

I think I flew one time each with Rose and Walsh as lap babies and paid for seats the other times. I kind of remember when Rose was small there was a “child” seat price – which was like half price. Does anyone else remember that?

When I did fly with my kids as lap babies, I kept them both sort of hooked to me in the sling. I remember the flight attendant wouldn’t let me hook one of them (maybe Rose) into the Baby Bjorn because she said they had to be able to get them off of you in the event of a crash. (Meaning: get them off of your dead burning body!! I was comforted by that.) But they didn’t mind me sitting the baby in my lap and then putting the sling over our heads and around our middles similar to a wide seat belt. I felt like if there was turbulence the sling would help keep the baby attached to me.

So what do you think: Should parents be allowed to have small children (generally under 2 I think) sit on their laps? Is it safe? Should parents be required to pay for seats? Should they be full price? Should the airlines come up with a “child” price? If we choose to have them as lap babies, should be we be allowed to sue the airline in the event they are hurt?

What do you think of the concept that you’re more likely to injure your child driving than flying? (We all know that stat that you are safer in the air but it’s odd to see it in writing.)

103 comments Add your comment

Uconn

September 7th, 2010
9:06 am

I am surprised that airlines haven’t started charging a fee to have babies on your lap… They charge for just about everything else!! And I do remember when kids prices were lower, but I guess they take up a seat and so must be charged accordingly.

I don’t think its safe to have a baby on your lap… Maybe an infant who does not squirm and such but I still don’t think its a good idea, turbulence is serious, and not where the plane shakes for a min or two, as I was on a plane that when taking off hit turbulence so bad the flight attendants couldn’t (weren’t allowed) to get up for fear they would be hurt. I can’t even imagine trying to hold on to a baby.. (of course I was freaking out…’nother story) But anyway, who knows… I don’t think its safe, but I do know its expensive!

Spacey

September 7th, 2010
9:10 am

I understand the need to secure the child for turbulance reasons… BUT, why would they use this plane crash in Butte as an example?
Everyone on board perished. It was a 10-seater plane which is very different from an airliner.
To answer the actual questions, children should be restrained in some way. The real danger is the turbulance or a head injury.

DB

September 7th, 2010
9:18 am

This comes under the category of “things I did when my kids were young that I look back on and can’t believe I did.” I flew with my son as a “lap baby” several times — it IS cheaper — but when I think of other flights I have been on, with sudden turbulences, etc., I shudder when I think of what could have happened. If you can’t keep a child safe in a 45 mph car crash, why in heaven’s name do you think you can keep a baby safe at 450 mph in the middle of a free fall? Just sayin’.

Yes, of course parents should be required to pay for seats — if not for the child, the seat would be taken by a paying customer, and airlines are not in the business of giving seats away. However, I, too, remember seats being 1/2 price for children under 3, but I haven’t seen that in a long time. If airlines want kids in car seats, I would think that they could at least look at resurrecting that, or else start losing a segment of their customer base.

Having just been in a car accident that totaled my van (we were rear-ended and accordianed on our way to take my son back to college – sigh) I have recent evidence that no matter how old your kids are, no matter how careful you are, accidents will happen at any time, That’s why they are called “accidents.” You cannot prevent other people from being stupid. (No one was injured — out of four cars in the chain reaction, three were totaled, which gives you an idea of the speed the at-fault driver was going.)

If I were traveling with babies these days, then yes, I would be buying a seat for them on airlines. Yes, it would be an added expense. It’s worth it.

Theresa Walsh Giarrusso

September 7th, 2010
9:32 am

DB — so sorry about the accident — very scary — I got hit from behind in Buckhead when the children were small. I’m pretty sure the lady was on her cell phone. I freaked out on her cause the kids were soo little.

SuwaneeMommy

September 7th, 2010
9:38 am

Absolutely babies should be required to be in their own seat, strapped into a car seat or similar restraint. It is a safety issue, pure and simple. I don’t understand parents who compromise their children’s safety to save a buck.

My 27-month-old has been on three plane trips in her life, soon to go on the fourth, and she’s always had her own seat. I wouldn’t do it any other way.

mamaC

September 7th, 2010
9:46 am

My husband is an airline pilot and completely agrees that children should be restrained during flights. Sudden turbulence is always a possibility, and in the event of an emergency landing or (worse) a crash, children have a better chance of surviving if they are in their seats and not tumbled around the plane. It’s scary to even think about, but what troubles me just as much is that airlines use a monetary excuse as to why they allow lap children. If buying a seat for your child, regardless of age or size, was required, what other choice would passengers have? You would either pay for the extra ticket or you wouldn’t fly. If you want to go badly enough, you’d pay.

Photius

September 7th, 2010
9:49 am

As a single engine pilot I can tell you turbulence is reality and no child should be allowed to be a lap baby. Forget trying to protect the child in the event of a crash – 250 mph crash landing the jig is up. Turbulence cannot be detected or seen and it can happen as high up at 50,000 feet – all of sudden you can find yourself on the ceiling of the airplane with negative G’s. A small baby needs to be in their own seat strapped in; the adults should also be strapped in at all times.

TinaTeach

September 7th, 2010
9:51 am

I flew with my 11 month old when he was 8 months old to go see his grandparents. We flew ATL to Chicago and then Chicago to OKC. He went as a lap infant and it was nerve wracking for me, being the first time. He was good and slept on all for flights, breastfeeding while we took off and landed. I do think that next time I will put him in a seat though. We lucked out and didn’t have any turbulance but I’ve been on flights where it was really bad and I’d hate to imagine what could have happened.

I do wish that we could get a discount ticket for children under a certain age and weight, Maybe 5 yrs old and 80lbs? That would help a lot of families continue to fly the friendly skies.

It's me...

September 7th, 2010
9:53 am

…I don’t know if lap babies should be banned but I have a strong opinion that all lard azzez should be, you know, those fat enough to take up two seats yet they cram themselves into one (and the one next to them) while being uable to even buckle the extender…

JJ

September 7th, 2010
10:10 am

Would you drive a car with a lab baby?

JOD

September 7th, 2010
10:18 am

I just paid a full-price fare for a 2-year-old, so I can honestly say I was glad to have her belted just in case of turbulence or other air mishaps despite the extra expense. It is silly, however, to use a crash where everyone on board died as evidence of why children should be belted in – it would not have made a difference in this tragic case.

@It’s me – I always end up next to someone who wants to put the armrest up so he (or she) can creep into my seat. I hugged the window all the way home from Hartfort, CT, trying to keep from being smothered!

HB

September 7th, 2010
10:20 am

If turbulence can come along suddenly enough that all passengers are asked to keep their seatbelts on while seated at cruising altitude, then it seems like a no-brainer that babies should be strapped in too. Safety aside, for the comfort of other passengers, the age of lap babies should be lower than two. Most kids by 18 months are too big to sit on a lap without constantly kicking the seat in front of them (not a behavior issue — there’s just very little space and even a little squirming can result in jarring the person in front). Leg room on most airlines has decreased considerably since the 2-year-olds were first declared small enough for laps.

motherjanegoose

September 7th, 2010
10:37 am

@ Tina…when was the last time you flew…I am perhaps missing out on flying the friendly skies and it is not because I almost always fly Delta and never fly United.

I fly nearly 50 segments per year and this is a DROP in the bucket compared to what some folks fly. Manners on the airplane have evaporated. This is a reflection of manners in life…everyone is out for themselves. Rules…who needs them?

I might sing the same verse as DB, when it comes to the ” things I did….”

I agree that children need to be in car seats to be safe. The problem, to me, would be a very small infant who is in a car seat and wailing with ear piercing screams during take off or landing. They are unsettled and may need some swaddling but actually it is really not safe to be in a lap vs. the seat.

As far as pricing, I am not sure…the airlines are trying to dig themselves out and the fares we pay now are actually quite a bit lower ( compared to income) than what was expected years ago.
Many airlines offer SUPER pricing, if you plan ahead or even wait to the last minute.

WHO can drive to say Denver for $225 r/t….not me! It is nearly 3000 miles from Atlanta R/T and the 2010 government mileage rate for driving would get you almost $1500 reimbursement ( I think) …not to mention hotel and meals along the way. A family of 4, paying for tickets, would still be less than $1000 for airfare. I am not the best at Math, so someone else may know something different.

Flying with many children, in today’s world is a mess. Parents seem to think that everyone on the plane will adore their child as much as they do. I ABSOLUTELY LOVE CHILDREN but I love children who have expectations set for them and know how to behave, with a set of manners. Children who are indulged, on an airplane, are not so much fun. When you are eating in a restaurant with these children, you can leave. When you are on the plane…not so much.

I book exit row, so I can sit in a row without children. I once was kicked on an entire 5 hour flight
( red eye) by a child who was sitting behind me…GRRR :). I usually cross my fingers that I will be upgraded to first class…already on board with that for my Th flight this week! YIPPEE!

HR

September 7th, 2010
10:41 am

YES – everyone, regardless of age, should be in their own seat and be properly restrained. I agree with give a discount based on weight / age. However, I also think people who are overweight should be charged more as well. You need to have all this info regarding weight beforehand as well. I have been on many flights where the weight of passengers was not evenly distributed on the plane.

Theresa Walsh Giarrusso

September 7th, 2010
11:03 am

hey — I just found this when I searched lap babies — apparently some international flights charge a 10 percent rate on lap babies —

http://www.azcentral.com/12news/consumer/articles/2009/01/08/20090108LAPbabyFEEscript01082009-CR.html

ps. I am working right now on tomorrow’s blog and a reader has sent me the most shocking story — be sure to check in tomorrow for a lively debate. you guys are going to be shocked by this one.

Lori

September 7th, 2010
11:07 am

While I agree that it would be safer to have your infant in a seat strapped in, lets think realistically. The baby is going to cry, right??? Pressure changes are going to hurt their ears and they can’t clear the pressure as an adult can. Also, many older babies are not going to be able to be entertained in a car seat for very long. The other passengers are going to complain about the crying, so parents are still going to have to hold their babies anyway to calm them, thus negating the safety factor of having them in a separate seat. Not sure what is the right call here, but no one else seems to have considered this in the discussion.

Theresa Walsh Giarrusso

September 7th, 2010
11:13 am

Lots of people without kids call for kid planes and planes free of kids — maybe if they did a kid plane the reward for parents traveling with all other kids is a reduced rate on the kids seats — maybe they take a loss on that flight but increase passenger happiness on other flights??

I would be the Kid airline — offer pb&J or other kid friendly food on the plane, tv shows for movies for kids on the plane to keep them amused — nice kid friednly flight attendants –maybe even area for parents to walk around in — maybe you pull some seats — who knows — maybe they need to make it a niche plane on the bigger routes — (someone will steal this!!!)

motherjanegoose

September 7th, 2010
11:18 am

@ HR…if tickets were bought by weight…how would they be purchased? Is your scale at home the same as the one at the airport. If everyone had to check in, weigh in and be screened through security…HOW LONG WOULD THIS TAKE?

Would there be extra man power that needed to be hired to evaluate the weights and also be on call for those who usually book on line but are now very confused and need to speak with a representative. Would travel agencies have scales that are calibrated to the airline’s scales, so passengers could come in and weigh when they bought their ticket?

My scale at home is calibrated to the Delta scale here in Atlanta, as I have 2 heavy bags and need to keep them in check. My Doctor’s scale is NOT the same as the airport scale nor mine at home.
Which one is correct?

Is there really a simple answer to having folks weigh and pay…I do not see one but someone else might!

motherjanegoose

September 7th, 2010
11:20 am

Theresa…LOL…I am not in marketing nor economics but I find humor in your ideas. Maybe an airline employee can tell us if this would work.

My vote is the planes to Mickey Mouseville should be the first ones to hop on board with your ideas. I HATE flying to Orlando for business!

Louise Stoll

September 7th, 2010
11:26 am

It’s a no brainer; every passenger in the plane should be in his/her own seat. No one can hang onto a baby on their lap during turbulence or a really rough landing, and there are unfortunate cases documenting this. But it goes further than that: Just as the airlines supply a seat belt suitable for most of their passengers; and provide an extender belt (by law) for anyone whom the lap belt won’t fit around, they should be required to supply the appropriate restraint for the youngest travelers.For children under 1 year of age, this means a back facing car seat-like device – an airplane friendly, stacking type is now available in the UK; for children over 22 lbs already able to sit front facing, there are CARES child aviation restraints which weigh 1 pound, fit in a 6 ” stuff sack, attach in a minute to the airplane seat and keep the child as safe as a car seat would. (Over 70,000 parents have already purchased these). The airplane-friendly child restraints already exist and the airlines should be required to hand them out to parents as they board the planes.

Louise Stoll

September 7th, 2010
11:27 am

Enter your comments here

Theresa Walsh Giarrusso

September 7th, 2010
11:34 am

Louise — I have seen things like those light restraints in catalogs — I also think you could use them in cabs in NYC — we never took the kids to NYC cause we couldn’t figure out what to do with the car seats once you got where you were going — i guess subway to most places -

motherjanegoose

September 7th, 2010
11:44 am

@louise…good points! I am not familiar with the restraints you mentioned but think it would be WAY less hassle than parents wrangling their car seats through the airport, security and on board.

If you rented a car upon arrival, the car rental agencies usually have car seats for rent or I guess you could check one in with your baggage.

Reality, T, I do not think you would want to rent one as they usually do come already crusty with things from the previous child…not sure how clean they can get them between customers.

Actually, how clean are the already mentioned airplane friendly restraints…something I do not know!

CartersMom

September 7th, 2010
11:55 am

After we flew in April and lugged a Britax Marathon carseat through Hartsfield and onto a jet, I vowed I would never do it again. So I bought the CARES harness for $75.00 down at New Baby Products on Cheshire Bridge (you can buy them online as well).

We used it for our 2.5 year old this summer for a July 4th flight. It was awesome and much easier to lug through the airport. As Louise said, it comes in a tiny red pouch and could fit in your purse. Additionally, because he was sitting on the seat (and not jacked up in the carseat) his little feet couldn’t kick the back of the seat in front of him as easily. I traveled extensively for business years ago, and I make darn sure my kid isn’t “THAT KID” on a flight. I pack insane amounts of snacks, stickers, games, crayons, DVDs, iPhone games, etc to keep him occupied.

I never flew with my son until after he was 2 – so the “infant in arms” debate was something I never had to experience. However, there is no way I would fly without my kid restrained. If something bad happened, you couldn’t ensure you’d be strong enough to hold onto them. Also, I am not one of those parents who felt they have to take huge trips with an infant. It was just too much stress for us to think about hauling all of the baby paraphanelia (stroller, pack and play, carseat) and luckily our families are within a 5 hour drive. When my husband and I flew when he was a baby, it was off for a trip on our own.

Even now, I don’t think my son is quite old enough to handle a West Coast flight. So far, he’s been kept on flights 2 hours or less. It was manageable and I think we did a decent job of keeping him quiet and entertained. I think I would probably wait until he was at least 3 until we tried a longer haul flight.

Theresa Walsh Giarrusso

September 7th, 2010
12:02 pm

We did a flight from Atl to Hawaii when Rose was 5 and Walsh was 3 and they really did quite well. We brought a dvd player and just bought the super friends double pack DVD and they loved that. I brought Uncrustables and lots of snack food in a bag for them and lots to read, draw on, stickers, maybe even some playdough. We walked some and slept some. They really did quite well. and we’re so excited to be there they stayed up and adjusted to the time change pretty quickly. We probably would have tried Italy the next summer (actually a shorter flight from the ATL) but we found out I was pregnant with Lilina when we returned so now more flying for a while. (although I did take rose to boston while I was pregnant for my cousin’s wedding. she’s an excellent little traveler.)

JJ

September 7th, 2010
12:13 pm

Last time I flew with my daughter as a baby, she was 9 months old. We go the bulkhead seat, so she was able to get down on the floor and play. She wasn’t walking yet, so she stayed right there and was such a good girl. Before that, she was 5 weeks old and we flew out to see my parents in SLC. We were on a Delta L1011, and the plane was practically empty. I was able to sit in the row of seats in the middle of the plane, and I was able to use two other seats to lay her down in. She slept the entire flight.

But I doubt I will ever get on another airplane again, unless I decide to go to Europe. I hate flying, the fees are rediculious and I would much rather travel by car.

catlady

September 7th, 2010
12:17 pm

We took my granddaughter to Puerto Rico (3 plus hours) for my younger daughter’s wedding. She was a little past 2. She was the best-behaved child on the plane, and the ONLY one strapped into her car seat, although the regulations my daughter read said small children HAD to have their car seat. We were also the only people we saw at the ATL or San Juan airports hauling around a carseat–my poor son-in-law looked like a belabored turtle. What gives with that?

YES, I think all young kids/babies should have to have carseats, if for nothing more than keeping them in one place! And, yes, paying for that is one of the costs of traveling. To all you whiners—STOP!

DB

September 7th, 2010
12:26 pm

@TWG: The person who hit me was not on a cell phone, wonders of wonders — in fact, she had to borrow mine to call family. And her baby was in a car seat properly installed in the middle of the back seat. So in this case, it really was “just one of those things.” Ah, well — this is why you have insurance :-) The police officer was marveling at the scene at the accident — all four cars had current licences, insurance and registration, and apparently that is almost unheard of in Atlanta!

Theresa Walsh Giarrusso

September 7th, 2010
12:33 pm

DB – that’s funny — he’s shocked when people have licenses, tags and insurance — I love it!

TechMom

September 7th, 2010
12:50 pm

Tried to post earlier when I was at the dentist with my son but evidently their wifi isn’t the greatest :)

Anyway, I agree with Lori in that most infants aren’t going to be restrained in a carseat while on a flight because they aren’t going to be comfortable and so Mom or Dad is going to be holding the baby anyway. I also think this is a crappy incident to use as basis for a law. A 10-seater plane versus a 100+ person jet should not be treated the same. But Americans love to throw useless laws at issues because we think it will save laws when really, it’s a waste of resources. I hate to be the one to say this out loud but really, how many infants in arms are hurt each year on commercial airlines due to turbulence? Is this really a problem?

TechMom

September 7th, 2010
12:51 pm

HB

September 7th, 2010
2:00 pm

I would think, though, that even if babies weren’t in seats the whole time, they at least would be when the fasten seatbelt sign is on. Sudden turbulence can happen without warning, so sure, there could be babies with seats being held by parents instead when that happens. But if the pilots know the air ahead is iffy and turn on the fasten seatbelt light, wouldn’t parents put the babies in the seat even if crying/unhappy until the higher likelihood of turbulence has passed? If the child doesn’t have a seat, that’s not even an option. It seems reasonable to me to pass a law requiring that babies have a safe place to sit during a bumpy flight. How is that different from requiring carseats for road trips?

Maddy

September 7th, 2010
2:25 pm

My oldest was 18 months and I was 3 months pregnant with my 2nd when my brother got married halfway hundreds of miles away from where we lived. We were a young family, without a lot of money, but their Dad stayed home and I borrowed the money to fly, purchasing 2 seats, one for myself, and one to accomodate my toddler’s airline approved safety seat. That was 22 years ago. I have 4 children now and fly several times a year. I am amazed that otherwise safety conscious parents would even dream of putting their children onto a plane without being securely restrained. My daughter remained safely secured in her car seat for virtually the entire flight. I brought plenty to entertain her and we managed just fine. And no, as I said, we didn’t have extra money. But if you can’t afford to fly safely with your child(ren), then don’t fly. Period. Harsh? I don’t think so. What price do you put on your child’s life?

motherjanegoose

September 7th, 2010
2:31 pm

KUDOS TO PARENTS WHO BRING SNACKS AND ENTERTAINMENT FOR THEIR KIDS….thanks!

I am amazed at those who have NOTHING for their kids to do. Our son loved colorforms ( sp?) and he got a new set each time we flew…kept him busy for hours. There were no electronics then…not even TV screens on the plane…not even cell phones to interrupt the flight attendants on take off or landing…imagine it :)

Michelle

September 7th, 2010
2:32 pm

Did you ever see the movie about the plan crash that had Jeff Goldbloom and Rosario Dawson (I think)? They both survived (along with a few others), but she was holding her child who died. She had such grief and remorse thinking she could have saved the baby by holding it tighter.

It finally took the character of Jeff Goldbloom driving a car into a brick wall (she was holding a toolbox of approximately the same weight as her child) going about 40 mph or so. He said if she could hold that, then she was right, she could have saved her baby. Of course, you know you cannot hold something like that!

So, essentially, I’m not sure what makes a parent think that a sudden change at 400+ mph is going to keep their child safe on their lap!

When my little guy was younger, I never really thought of all the problems you could have. I had never really flown that often myself!

Cammi317

September 7th, 2010
2:45 pm

I am torn on this one. What are the statistics on lap babies being injured? I have never seen an intensive study on this which leads me to believe that it is a nominal percentage, otherwise the rules would have been changed long ago. What I do have a problem with is school buses not having seat belts. Statistically, people are much much more likely to get killed in a car crash than an airplane crash.

abc

September 7th, 2010
2:53 pm

Anything that discourages parents from bringing kids under 2 on a plane — such as the expense of having to buy a ticket — is a good thing. The less babies on an airplane, the better it is for all the other passengers.

Actually, Cammi317...

September 7th, 2010
3:01 pm

…you are MUCH more likely to be killed IN a plane crash than a car crash, but I know what you meant. And, if the lard azzes would stay out of the plane then probably fewer planes would crash…

Wow, I bet you guys...

September 7th, 2010
3:06 pm

…really hated us – my spouse worked for Delta and when the kids were little we traveled ALL the time with them for free…when they were little though we ALWAYS had their FAA approved car seats in tow, and they were used (our mentor at the birthing classes recommended that we purchase the car seats that were FAA approved – that way they doubled up on their use). And, we ALWAYS had tons of snacks and books (this was over 20 years ago) for their use so as not to disturb the other folks, especially since we were flying for free.

JATL

September 7th, 2010
3:46 pm

100% agree that all babies and small children should be in their own seats, in a car seat device. We flew one time with my oldest in our laps and as the plane was taking off it dawned on me how stupid it was to fly this way. I’ve experienced rough turbulence more than once on flights where overhead bins opened and under seat bags went flying around in the aisles, so it could be extremely dangerous if you had a baby in your lap that could fall or go flying. And the very thought of taking a baby/child on a plane without games, activities and lots of snacks just shows that too many people breed who should leave well enough alone.

JATL

September 7th, 2010
3:54 pm

Also, I would actually LOVE a kid airline or certain flights for families traveling together. We lucked out and have two kids who are great on planes -usually sleep the whole time- no screaming, etc., but I get so stressed out flying with them and thinking that any minute one of them is going to have a melt down or something and annoy the entire plane that I would love knowing we were on a kid friendly flight! When I travel without kids, I would also LOVE being on a no kid flight!

And I don’t understand why your kids won’t be comfortable in their car seats on the plane. They’re comfortable in the car seats in your car, so why would it be an issue causing you to have to hold them all the time?

Common Sense

September 7th, 2010
4:07 pm

Any human should have to have a ticket, just like anyone else. And no pets should be allowed in the cabin.

I want it my way! I don't care if it negatively impacts others!

September 7th, 2010
4:14 pm

Why don’t we just let every passenger pile as much sh*t in their laps as they can tolerate? That ought to make for a pleasant flying experience for all.

This is just more whining about how difficult it is to raise children and how all of society should be geared towards making things easier on parents, regardless of how it impacts everyone. Get real.

Christina

September 7th, 2010
4:29 pm

If you have to stow your carry-on under the seat in front of you to protect other passengers from injury in the event of turbulence…why not stuff the kids under there for my safety as well? Seriously though, sitting next to a mother with a squirming toddler in her lap is WORSE than sitting next to an obese person. I have three kids and they did not take their first flight until they were old enough to sit still and be quiet for hours on end. That is called courtesy, people!

cat

September 7th, 2010
4:38 pm

Definitely! I saw a 250 pound woman with a 22 month toddler. The baby squirmed and carried on the entire flight. I felt so sorry for the man next to her. That wasn’t fair! Buy a seat, and don’t intrude on other people.

john

September 7th, 2010
4:45 pm

I had a flight once where the lady in the seat next to mine could barely fit in it’s confines. She had a “lap baby” that stood almost 3 feet tall as I recall. There was no lap on this lady to sit on and the kid was standing in my area because she was taking up every inch of her leg area. There was no way that kid was standing in front of me the whole flight. I called the flight attendant and fortunately there was 1 open seat on the flight for me to move to. The nerve of some people.

JP

September 7th, 2010
5:13 pm

We flew from Boston to Atlanta last night and were seated next to a woman with a baby who looked to be almost two years old. The baby was playing in our seats and started screaming when we arrived to claim our seats. Thank goodness we were able to change seats because it would have been awful to sit next to them the whole way. She couldn’t keep that child in her arms and we did hit a lot of turbulance.

Babies ought to be in carseats strapped into their own seat. It is safer and nicer for those seated nearby. What would be even nicer than that would be to have flights without children at all.

Joel Dockery

September 7th, 2010
5:39 pm

You want to know how we feel, or what we think? There is no evidence presented. Are we ready to put up with the added fuel usage child restraints would impose? How many infants are injured by turbulence every year? Can we afford to spend the tens of millions of dollars to possible save a life or two? I certainly want to preserve life whenever possible, but those tens of millions could be spent to save many more lives otherwise.

Kathy Nelson

September 7th, 2010
5:59 pm

I believe babies should have their own seats for takeoff and landing. I do not believe parents can expect the airlines to discount the seat because a baby will be in it, because that will eliminate them being able to sell that seat to an adult. Parents should be willing to pay for the safety of their children and the luxury of having children flying.

Not baby fan on flights

September 7th, 2010
6:22 pm

They should be required to by a seat for their baby. It will immediately decrease the amount of screaming children on a flight. Oh, and it is in the best interests of the safety of the child.