Air India to offer alternative seating for solo female travellers | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
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Air India to offer alternative seating for solo female travellers

Oct 05, 2023 01:02 PM IST

Although the Air India spokesperson did not comment on the development, other officials told media persons that the step was being taken to avoid any kind of issues between male and female passengers

Air India will now allow solo women travellers and mothers to choose alternative seats on their flights. In a directive issued on Tuesday, the airline said such passengers should be preferably given an aisle or a window seat at their convenience.

Air India (Representative Photo)
Air India (Representative Photo)

“To ensure the female guests travelling with us have a comfortable flight, we as a company are adopting a gender-sensitive seat assignment practice. A circular has been released by…team with regards to the same,” stated an internal communication dated October 3.

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It also said that the crew must also extend the offer to children travelling alone and seated in centre seats.

“In our endeavour to adopt the practice, cabin crew members should be mindful and discreet (but not limit themselves) while offering to reseat the below guests in case there are vacant seats available female passenger travelling alone seated between male passengers, mother with infant seated on centre seats could be relocated to a seat with bassinet location (preferably aisle) or window seat.,” it stated.

Although the Air India spokesperson did not comment on the development, other officials told media persons that the step was being taken to avoid any kind of issues between male and female passengers.

According to Air India, it had been brought to the company’s notice that the women passengers travelling alone felt uncomfortable when assigned a middle seat.

“The airline has termed it to be a step under its ‘gender-sensitive seat assignment practice’. It has also asked the concerned department to ensure that no middle seats are assigned to solo women travellers when both window and aisle seats are occupied by male passengers,” an airline in the know of the development said.

However, the step seems to have not gone well with a few employees.

“Every flight has at least 10% solo women travellers. This directive may not be an effective one,” said one of the airline employees.

Aviation expert Mohan Ranganathan said, “Rather than coming up with such a directive, which in all probability will lead to confusion, the airline should direct their concerned department to handle the situation at the booking level itself.”

“If the airline has taken a decision in the name of being gender sensitive then the airline should not cause confusion and chaos by introducing such a directive and allot aisle seats to solo women passengers while they book their air tickets,” he added.

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