Tips for Comfortable Travel with Excess Weight - Flightright UK

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Flying with excess weight – tips for travelling comfortably

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The most important facts about “Flying with excess weight”

  • There are no universal weight limits for travellers on aircraft; the focus is on safety and comfort in terms of the fit in the seat and the length of the seat belts.
  • Whether overweight passengers need to book two seats depends on the airline and individual factors such as seat dimensions and height.
  • If the standard seat belt on the aircraft does not fit, passengers can request an extension from the flight crew.
  • With the right preparation for the flight, travelling will be comfortable and safe despite being overweight.


Did you have a flight delay or cancellation? Check your rights now and increase your chances of compensation

You are familiar with the narrow aisles, seats and toilets in aeroplanes. The question of how flying with excess weight works is an obvious one. We clarify this issue and give you helpful tips to make your journey on the plane as pleasant and stress-free as possible.

How heavy can you be to fly?

There are no universal weight limits for passengers on aeroplanes or with airlines; instead, the focus is on safety and comfort in terms of the fit in the seat. The dimensions of the seat and the length of the seat belts are more important than the weight of the passenger. 

Can you fly if you are overweight?

Yes, people who are overweight can of course fly on the aircraft. There are no restrictions on the part of airlines with regard to the body weight of passengers. It is advisable to contact the airline in question before travelling or to check online whether there is specific information on the size of the seat and the length of the seat belts.

I weigh 130 kg: Will I fit into an aircraft seat?

Yes, with a weight of 130kg you should usually fit into a standard aircraft seat, but the exact fit will depend on the seat dimensions of the airline in question. So find out about the seat sizes on the aircraft of your chosen airline and flight. 

From how many kg do you need 2 seats in the aircraft?

The regulation for the weight at which two seats are required on an aircraft varies depending on the airline and can also depend on other factors such as the person’s height and body shape. There is therefore no exact weight in kilograms at which air travellers require a second seat. If air travellers do not fit into a seat due to the dimensions of an airline seat and their own measurements, it is more comfortable and safer to book a second seat. 

Do overweight passengers have to book two seats?

You may be wondering: Do I have to book two seats for my flight if I am a very heavy person? That actually depends on the airline. Find out in advance from your airline whether booking two seats is necessary for your safety and comfort.

What if the seatbelt on the aircraft doesn’t fit?

If the seat belt on the aircraft does not fit, you can request an extension from the flight crew. These extensions are available on most aircraft and are provided by the crew to ensure that all passengers can be safely buckled up during the flight. However, let us know well in advance when boarding, booking or checking in to ensure that your needs are properly catered for. 

How long are seat belts on the aircraft?

The length of seat belts on aeroplanes can vary, but standard economy class seat belts on most airlines are around 117 to 142 cm long.

Can the airline refuse to carry me?

An airline may refuse to carry passengers who are overweight if this poses a safety or health risk. The airline is more likely to refuse to carry you if you have not booked a second seat, even though this would have been necessary. If you have booked a second seat, it is therefore very unlikely that you will be denied boarding.

Are you having trouble with a cancellation or flight delay and don’t want to accept it without doing anything? You shouldn’t either. After all, you are entitled to compensation in many cases of delay or cancellation.

You can rely on the support of our experts in the following cases:
Flight delay compensation, flight cancellation compensation
Compensation for overbooking
Compensation for denied boarding

Order Flightright conveniently online:
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With us, you can check your claims free of charge in two minutes. You can receive up to 520 pounds compensation per person (minus the success commission).

When did the airline inform you of the flight cancellation or delay?
On the day of the flight or less than 14 days before or more than 14 days before departure.

Are you also affected by a missed connecting flight? Check your flight now. Simple ✔ fast ✔ & without risk ✔

I don’t fit in the seat – what now?

If you realise at the time of booking that you won’t fit in the aircraft seat, you should also book the seat next to yours. An alternative is to upgrade to a higher class such as Business or First Class, which offer more space. 

If you only realise on the plane that you don’t fit in the seat, don’t worry and speak to the flight crew, you will certainly find a solution. It is often possible to transfer passengers and then offer you a seat that does not have a neighbour.

Flying with excess weight: double the seat, double the claim

In the event of flight problems such as delays or cancellations, you are often entitled to compensation depending on the circumstances. This compensation claim applies per person, but if you book two seats, the question naturally arises as to whether you are entitled to double compensation. 

Unfortunately, there is no clear answer to this question, as it is a grey area. For example, airlines argue that no claims can be made for babies travelling with you, as the baby does not have its own flight ticket. But with two seats, you theoretically also have two flight tickets.

Flightright conducts court proceedings for passengers who have booked two seats. However, it is not certain whether courts will award double compensation. Court decisions vary from case to case. However, it is always worth asserting your claim for compensation even if you have two seats and informing us of your situation.

Tips and tricks for flying with (severe) excess weight

Flying with excess weight and size is a particular challenge for many passengers. But don’t worry, with the right preparations and a few tricks, your flight can be relaxed and comfortable. Tips for full and tall people:

1. Inform the airline

Inform your airline in advance about your needs. This gives the airline the opportunity to make appropriate arrangements and make your flight as comfortable as possible.

2. Book a second seat

As already discussed, you should consider a second seat if you suspect that one might not be enough.

3. Ask for another seat when boarding

If you did not book a second seat when you made your booking but now think you need a second seat, speak to the staff when boarding. Ask about the available options and the airline will certainly provide you with a suitable solution.

4. Do not reserve an XL seat

Tall passengers with long legs benefit from the legroom of XL seats. However, the XL seat is not a good solution for corpulent travellers, as they are often more restricted in terms of seat width.

5. Do not book an emergency exit seat

Emergency exit row is just another word for the XL seat. If the airline calls your XL seats emergency exit seats, this also means that you will have more legroom but generally less seat width. 

6. Wear comfortable clothing

Comfortable clothing on the aircraft is important for corpulent passengers, as it increases comfort, promotes blood circulation, makes it easier to adapt to changing temperatures and offers more freedom of movement.

7. Book business class

If your budget allows, consider booking a business class seat. These usually offer more space and comfort.

8. Book Premium Economy

A cheaper alternative to Business Class is Premium Economy, which offers more space and comfort than Standard Economy Class.

9. Avoid aircraft toilets

Be aware that aeroplane toilets are often very cramped. Plan ahead and use the toilets at the airport before boarding if necessary.

10. Ask for a seatbelt extender

If the standard seat belt does not fit, ask for a belt extender so that the belt fits, you are safe and the belt does not cut in uncomfortably.

Conclusion on flying with excess weight

Flying with excess weight does not have to be an obstacle to a pleasant journey. With good preparation and awareness of available options and services, you can make your flight comfortable and stress-free. By finding out about airline regulations, choosing the right seating options and choosing comfortable clothing, you can focus on what’s important: looking forward to your destination.

How can Flightright help you?

Are you stuck at the airport due to a flight delay? Your flight has been cancelled or you have been removed from the passenger list (denied boarding)?

In each of the situations described, you as a passenger have a right to compensation.

According to the UK261 Legislation, passengers are entitled to compensation in the event of a delay, cancellation, overbooking, or missed connection. They can receive up to £520 compensation per person (minus the success commission). This compensation is independent of the ticket price. Flightright enforces your right for you. If necessary also in court.

Tip: Flightright helps you to enforce your passenger rights! With us, you can check your claims free of charge in two minutes. ✔️Easy, ✔️fast ✔️& without risk

As the market-leading consumer portal, Flightright fights for the enforcement of air passenger rights. We stand up for your rights in the event of a flight delay, cancellation or denied boarding and refer to the UK261 Regulation. Flightright’s air passenger rights experts are also happy to help you with ticket refunds and refunds for cancelled package tours.

As experts in the field of air passenger rights, we enforce your right to compensation against the airline!

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