A few weeks ago there was a lot of buzz about a photo that showed a new form of seating being tested for airlines (see below). It’s called the Sky Rider, and is a “saddle” rather than a seat. It allows airlines to reduce legroom by seven inches, and could potentially double the number of people that could fly on one flight. It is being suggested for short-haul flights around the world.

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The initial, and expected reaction, was one of horror and “No, this can’t be right”. Why is this almost always some people’s instinct response to something new and different?

I can see many benefits to using the Sky Rider seats. Here are just a few:

  • Standing is actually better for you than sitting – more air to the lungs, less likelihood of DVT, better circulation, and so on.
  • Standing for a few hours is not unusual – many people do it all day for their jobs or at concerts and sport events. And they do so without access to a rest for their buttocks which this saddle provides.
  • More people on a plane means less planes need to fly, which means we can reduce carbon emissions, reduce airfares and reduce airport congestion.
  • It will reduce the price of airline tickets.
  • It’ll be easier to get out and go to the loo…

Don’t just say “No” next time you see an innovation. Stop and think about it a bit:

Sky Rider seat

The future of air travel? Quite possibly. And a potentially good thing too.

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