exit rows

Exit-row etiquette: should you have a license to sit there?


Who doesn’t enjoy being seated in the exit row? The seats assure cramped passengers extra inches of legroom and are an airplane’s most coveted feature.

How do get one of those seats? They’re usually assigned to top-tier frequent fliers, passengers who have paid an extra fee, those who ask nicely or folks who are simply at the right place at the right time.

But maybe those seats should be assigned instead to passengers who have taken a safety course and are certified to sit there.  Or at least to people who have actually practiced opening an exit row door and throwing it off to the side.

Those are just two of the ideas offered up by a panel of safety experts outlined in my Well-Mannered Traveler column on MSNBC.com today.  Here’s a link where you can read all about Exit Row Etiquette. While you’re there, take a moment to cast your vote in our exit-row survey. So far close to 3,000 people have voted and most of them think that they should get an exit row seat just because they ask for one.

What do you think? Would you be willing to practice opening an emergency exit-row door or would you attend a safety class in order to get an exit-row seat?