A seat in Air

To sit or not to sit, that’s the question!

The earth rotates by itself and it revolves around the sun. In one way we are also in space supported by the earth. We are getting a free trip around the sun.

There is a tug of war in the air just like the musical chair; only difference in this game is the seats are increasing.

In the beginning, air travel was a luxury and only the elite and educated classes were travelling in them. Just like the train, the aero planes were run by the government department. Very small segments of society were making use of it.

Times changed and the government started feeling the pinch of loss. The globalization extended the travel business and encouraged the private operators to own and operate.

To start with, it all seemed to be rosy and as years passed, with the frequent changes in the fuel pricing all started to bite their profit as well. The supposed to be fuel efficient Boeings were brought on to the tarmac, but with little success. Whether it is a fuel efficient one or fuel guzzler, the show should run and hence the industry brought out the plan of increasing the seating capacity in the disguise.

Anyway, some where some balance have to be made and a line has to be drawn. So the hammer fell on the seats.

A real fight for seat has begun.

The classes were segregated.

The VIP class, The executive class, the economy class, the business class, the parameters being the type of seat, the gap between the seat all around, the leg space, the elbow space, and the like depending upon the size of wallet. Seat designers in aircraft are the most sought after  like the most eligible bride and groom. So young engineers, this is the time for you before the magicians take away your place! A seat without a seat! We had to undergo a punishment like that in our school days. Sit as if you are sitting in a seat for sitting in the master’s seat in his absence.

Now that everyone wants to travel by air only, the question of transporting the passengers and pumping them out from the plane has become a serious question.

Increasing the seats by reducing the leg room  and the head room will put the passenger to get cramps while during the flight and an unexpected knock on his head and he may need rejuvenation by Ayurvedic massage .He will be put into a Spa after the flight. This would have very well suited to our old President who had a tour itinerary in which he used to include Kottakkal always. For example: Delhi- Bombay- Madras- Kottakkal-Delhi. An official cum (always) pleasure and rejuvenation trip.

For our Indians, especially who have lived in Bombay for many years and travelled in jam packed suburban trains, hanging in the fast trains and at a stretch a trip from Church gate to Viraar, my new scheme in the air travel will be a welcome suggestion.

In the so called low fare and very low fare flights, remove all the seats. Fix the long steel bars throughout the length of the plane with saddle handles. Passengers can stand comfortably or in packed condition. The total weight of seats can be converted into total weight of passengers or even more depending upon the safety factor.

The doors can be removed and in its place we can have a stretchable net and depending on its elasticity, more passengers can be stuffed. A slight bulging will not matter as we get wind flow for ventilation. The A/c can be removed from the flight.

We can have the  front entry for ladies and rear entry for gents with a shielded separator wall across half way through with wire mesh opening to avoid touching, and scandals. Since many would have experienced the Sabarimala pilgrimage with the twin bags that is carried on their head, here also we can have the same system adopted for their luggage which may allow us to recast the plane with an upper deck.

Either the toilets can be totally removed or we can have a toilet class as many would have struggled in their life time travelling in the toilets of unreserved compartments. So Air Toilet Class can be created with a concession in fare.

Next in comfort line flight will be to spread the mats and ask the passengers to squat with their legs folded. This can be treated as a Yoga exercise and good time to have a deep breathing during the sojourn. We can have the fragrance scent sprayed at regular intervals to avoid the rotten smell of sweat and other outlets. If a passenger needs extra leg room to stretch his hands and legs, then charge extra.

A little better in line will be a cushion bed with bolster type pillows tucked to at least lean toward s both sides at a higher price.

Next will be like kindergarten benches. Here it will be occupied as first come first basis or with a leniency among passengers; it can be divided according to the running time of flight.

Next in waiting is the double Decker type. We have and are trying out in trains and so why not in planes?
Less leg space, more packed passengers, make air travel a nightmare.

Next in line will be Hooking Class. Very simple. Many hooks will be provided under the wings and bucket seats will be hung. Passengers who are interested in a Merry go round type of travel which they would have experienced with their children and lovers in Theme Parks can avail and have an added experience in seeing the earth right under them. Special seat belts will be provided. The folk lore story of the stork carrying the baby.

Next in line will be an adventurous type. Many ropes will be hung and one can catch it. A Tarzan type experience.  The areca nut tree climbers in Kerala may like this type of travel at a cheaper rate as they can jump from one rope to another to spend the time during flight.

We can have low flying aircrafts to suit these last few schemes.

All these schemes will be accepted by folded hands by the passengers in India as they have travelled in much worse conditions in trains and buses.

We need air travel, that’s all, in whatever way it can be as we cannot fly like birds. For last minute passengers, the rear tail is kept reserved for them to hang in whatever way they want. No questions will be asked like the headlines of HAMLET type class!

A flight is a flight in whatever conditions it may be. So, now a day flying is not a feather in the cap, but a card tucked in the ear in a donkey card game.

For a person who had lived for a stretch of ten hours with his luggage on head and near the toilet of our railways can stand the test of time from Chennai to Brussels, merely standing in the Boeing, on one leg, if needed!  So, STACK’EM, PACK ‘EM, RACK ‘EM JUST LIKE SARDINES AND FINALLY PUMP THEM OUT.

The last few words are culled out from the article presented by Saurabh.Sinha   from Times of India dated October 5, 2014.

Few words to Mr Sinha.

In the cycling in the air category, instead of simple  pedaling in air action, if all the passengers pedal with some articulated wheel with chain, we can create enough speed and energy to the propellers that we can totally cut off the valuable aviation fuel to a considerable extent. Imagine the good old maritime  rowing. The air travel can be even free and we can offer them “Boost” at regular intervals. By the time the passengers get down, they will have a six pack or ten pack ab. The  regular  passengers  can avoid  the gym.

A note to our Scientist Chairman of ISRO.


First I have to congratulate you for the successful mission you and your team had undertaken. The Mangalayan.

People are ready to fly to Mars. Please arrange ‘space’ for them inside the satellite. No seats needed!  Atlas shrugged and Space Jammed. Even if you pump them out half way, they will hang on for the rest of the journey. That much enterprising are WE.

By Sundareswaran    Date:  7th October 2014.


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