Huffpost Travel

Families And Flying: Should Airlines Offer Children-Only Seating Areas And Flights?

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Last week blogger Keli Goff relived her tale of angst in the sky, when she forced to share her flight with a particularly unaccomodating family. Her personal story electrified the comments of The Huffington Post, with both families and the childless weighing in on the base topic: Should children have the same rights in the air as the rest of us?

"Flying the friendly skies always feels a bit like playing a game of Russian roulette," Keli expressed in her post. Indeed, it seems that horror stories of unruly children and questionable pilots alike have surfaced more than usual in recent weeks, and one airline has gone ahead and created a kid-free zone already. But does the inconvenience of one group outweigh the rights of another?

We asked you if families should be charged more, or asked to fly separately and were amazed at the personal stories and great debate that appeared in the comments. There were four in particular that stood out. So, should families get booted from mainstream flights? Here's what you said.

Can any of our commenters change your mind on this issue? Who do you agree with?

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1

Pre-debate poll:

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Should Airlines Offer Family-Only Seating Areas And Flights?

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Step
2

Who makes the better argument?

Point one: An airline for families would benefit families the most

"I completely understand that children have a tough time with air pressure on their little ears and they cry when the cabin pressure changes. That is not what is being outlined here. There are a lot of children being raised to expect constant and immediate gratification of all their whims. They have no ability to entertain themselves or the discipline to interact socially in public situations. Air travel is in no way conducive to children raised this way. Most children are well behaved and actually quite delightful to travel with and I travel at least 100k miles per year. If an airline wants to create a portion of the plane for people over 12, no problem. If an airline wants to ban infants and young children from business and first class, no problem.”- techjockey

Point two: Travel is currently not conducive to families.

"Planes are ridiculously unfriendly arenas for small children. Putting a toddler in a confined seat for hours on end with nothing to do is a recipe for suffering, and these days, security being what it is, bringing toys and distractions like healthy snacks on board is almost impossible. I'd love to see an airline that catered to kids by making more room for family style seating, and that offered games and other child friendly activities so traveling became fun for them.”- Eileenla

Point one: Children won't learn to behave if they can't try it out.

“The real problem is cabin pressure and our little kid's ears. They just can't stand the popping. And it isn't something that they can access as a concept until they are about two. Flying is hard on everyone. Children learn to be human by being around humans. I find humans that don't like small versions of us sort of odd.”- APMOTRBC

Point two: We should all learn to coexist a little better

“A little tolerance would be nice. We live in a society, sometimes you are forced to interact with other people. Kids are tough, and 95% of the time, the parent is more horrified by the disruption than the other people and is doing what they can to minimize it. Cut them some slack.”- NewYorkLiberal

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POST DEBATE POLL

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Should Airlines Offer Family-Only Seating Areas And Flights?

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Filed by Annemarie Dooling