Friday, February 5, 2010

Pay your dues

It has been rumoured that some airlines want to introduce a penalty for carrying obese persons. Obviously, the leftwing human rights greeny bunch scream "discrimination" again.

But no one mentions the fact that the airlines are still screwing us.

From an obese person's point of view, this is a bad idea.

But look at it from the point of view from someone who has always been shorter, smaller and, uh, let's say - not so round as some others might be. (Even though I seem to be catching up lately...)

Mr Little books in for his flight. He weighs a mere 75kg. His hand-luggage weighs 25kg. (Total weight - 100kg.) Under current discriminatory regulations, the airline makes him pay for extra weight. Even if he had been flying with one of the cheapy airlines like Jetstar, he would have the "option" of paying for 15kg or 20kg or 25kg of additional weight. For some reason the luggage may never exceed the limits without heavy penalties being incurred.

Next in line is Mr Big. He weighs 125kg, and his luggage has been trimmed down to 18kg. (His total weight is 143kg.) Mr Big ends up paying less than Mr Little. A lot less, I might add.

Talk about discrimination! We small people have been abused and trampled on by our larger counterparts for many years. I raised this issue with an airline more than 5 years ago - it's not a new idea.

Apart from the weight issue, there is also the additional wear-and-tear that is introduced by these large people. They add additional pressure on the seat that they're sitting on. They cause wear when they squeeze through the passage ways. They take up more room and make it uncomfortable for those around them. They probably even exhale more carbon dioxide and pollute the planet!

The airlines' solution to this problem is to make obese people pay 25% additionally for an open seat next to them. How ridiculous! They are still trying to screw us all. Although I like the idea that they should pay more, this is not a fair solution. All the airline is doing is increasing it's revenue, they're not reaching out to the Little customer who is actually saving them money.

This is how it should work:

There should be a combined weight limit. This would make more sense from a scientific point of view. What is the reason for these limits in the first place? Isn't it because the plane has a limit as to how much it can safely carry, and that the fuel consumption is influenced by the amount of weight the plane is dragging around? Why should Mr. Little pay more, even though it costs the airline less to drag him off to Hawaii? Now Mr Big can have an additional empty seat next to him for the same price as Mr. Little paid for his combined weight!

Air France even continues with this discrimination buy letting fat guys have a free seat next to them. Mr Big can request a free seat next to him at 25% cost, and get a refund if the plane wasn't full. Mr Little, however, can do the same - but without the refund.

Other non-overweight passengers could also book a second seat for a 25% discount, Air France said.

But they would not get the refund if the plane was not full when it took off.

Why are we not seeing some big class-action court-case (on behalf of normal-sized people) because of this? Why are only the Big people complaining and screaming "discrimination!!"?

But alas, most politicians and jetsetters who fly regularly are obese anyway, so the little guys will probably lose this fight. I wonder what Richard Branson's point of view is on this?

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