I had heard a lot of hype about the new Superjumbo jet, about how large it was, and how wonderful it would be for everyone involved. National Geographic even had a special about it’s manufacturing, and this article claims:
A wide staircase leads to the upper level, where first-class and business-class passengers will likely be seated. In an Airbus conception, each first-class seat folds open into a bed. On the main deck, the coach section will look similar to coach sections on airplanes today but with an extra inch (2.5 centimeters) of width in each seat.

OH. An extra inch for my tushi. How wonderful….but what about leg room? And when the passenger in front of me decides to recline the back of his seat, does this mean my coffee will drip into his hair, which is two inches in front of my bosom?

This photo from Singapore Airlines doesn’t reassure me a bit.

Seating arrangements are similar to the “3-4-3” seating of a 747.

And the aisles don’t look any wider, meaning that two people will still have trouble passing each other in the aisle.

Ditto for bathrooms.

Sigh.

None of this will bother people going from Tulsa to Chicago. But these large jets often fly long flights overseas.

Hell is a 12 hour flight from Detroit to Tokyo with all seats full.

Is there any wonder about an increase in air rage?

I remember the “good old days” when airlines could fly with a lot of vacant seats, and they weren’t strict about sitting around the back having a smoke or chat near the restrooms.

But with the collapse of the airline industry, airliners frequently fly packed, and standing around is discouraged.

Losing luggage is common,  and airports will probably adjust to boarding the higher number of passengers/luggage…so those of us who were frequent fliers knew to pack a small bag to carry on…but now with “airline security”, no more water bottles, shampoos or toothpaste…on a 12 hour flight…where delays are common and moving around is discouraged.
Is there any wonder that doctors worry about the threat of pulmonary emboli in air passengers? (caused by lack of moving and dehydration).
My other question is that of safety: Could everyone get out in case of a crash?
Another question, noted by this ABC report: What about wake turbulence? That’s the “bumpy air” left behind after the jet passes…and the logistical problems.

ABC quotes aviation expert Nance on saying that the logistical and safety problems are similar to those with the 747 and that airports will adjust.

However, will passengers adjust? And for all the talk about the increase in efficiency being good for the earth’s ecology, one wonders when someone will notice the human ecology to improve air travel for passengers.

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Nancy Reyes is a retired physician living in the rural Philippines. Her website is Finest kind Clinic and Fishmarket. 

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