Jade Small
Jade Small
December 22, 2023 ·  4 min read

‘I refuse to switch plane seats so couples or families can sit together’

It has become known that some people are lazy travelers, and others are organized to a spectacular point. Jaci Stephen is a frequent flyer with specific flight requirements regarding her seat. Luckily for her, she’s organized and books her seats in advance. She refused when a man asked if she would switch plane seats. This ignited a rage within him, and he started shouting. Jaci wrote about it to share her story. Funnily enough, there is an abundance of stories similar to Jaci’s.

To Switch Plane Seats, Or Not?

Some people are hyper-organized when they travel, and others are not. Not only does the former have a great itinerary planned, but they manage to book their flight seat well in advance. This way, they can guarantee their seat position no matter how full the flight gets. Not everyone follows this pre-emptive habit, and there is always a couple, or even a family, who get separated during the flight. They try their best to ask the organized travelers if they’d switch plane seats to be reunited. But, their request is refused.

Image credit: Jaci Stephen

Refusing to switch plane seats was once considered a strange and rude thing to do. People would end up squished between two people when they originally had a spacious aisle seat just to please a family they’ll likely never see again. These days, solo travelers are gaining more confidence in refusing to switch plane seats as they have made the effort to book their seats well in advance. Some airlines even require a small fee to pre-book their seat, which the family who didn’t book might not realize.

Jaci Williams wrote about her experience for the Daily Mail. It highlighted a particular flight inwhich a man had been separated from his wife and two children. They were flying in business class from the U.S to the U.K. This meant the seats were large and offered a sense of privacy that economy class dreams of. It also means, according to Jaci, that the family would have a lot of space between them. “The seats are very far apart, so it was hardly as if they’d be on a Disney ride together,” wrote Jaci.

Read: Aviation journalist warns why you should never wear leggings on a plane

She Refused

Even if Jaci decided to give up her pre-booked seat, they wouldn’t exactly be as close together as they made it seem they wanted. Needless to say, she refused his request. Jaci does not like to be seated facing the opposite direction of the pilot, which some of the business class seats do. The seat the father was trying to exchange happened to be facing the wrong way, so Jaci politely refused. According to her report, the man was enraged by her refusal and started shouting at her.

After he reached no avail, he moved on to other unsuspecting passengers to see if they were keener on switching plane seats. His voice was still loud enough for Jaci to hear him berating her. Eventually, the cabin crew members got involved in helping ease the tense situation. This was not Jaci’s first time she had refused to switch plane seats.

On another flight, a couple had been separated. She declined when the boyfriend asked if she could swap with one of them. The girlfriend was not impressed with her decision and made it known.

Celebrity’s Request to Switch Plane Seats Refused

Vogue Williams, a famous Irish model, went viral over a Podcast where she explained an incident similar to JaCI’S. However, she was the one being turned down. This was after her husband asked a man to switch plane seats with them so their family could be seated together.

Vogue and Spencer have a Podcast together, aptly called Vogue and Spencer. Together, they shared their experience with a stubborn man who had no intention of switching plane seats. Vogue had accidentally booked the wrong seat, ultimately separating her from her husband and two kids. “I was sitting in an aisle of three, I had booked the wrong seat on the other aisle,” said Vogue. “And then Spenny and the kids were in the other seat. So they were in the aisle seat and middle seat so we were almost in an aisle of five.”

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Spencer, whom you might recognize from Made in Chelsea, asked the man if he minded switching seats and his response was: “Yes, Spencer, I would mind.”

According to Vogue’s Podcast, she eventually got her wish as the man seemed to realize she was a mother of three, with one still being an infant. He eventually agreed, but Vogue maintained her berrating approach. “Anyways, when he realised he was being an absolute t***, because he looked at me with the newborn baby and two kids beside me, he was like ‘Okay fine, fine, I’ll do it,’” said Vogue. “Then literally the air hostess came down and I asked her ‘Would you have another aisle seat for this f***ing particular piece of s*** over here’.”

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Keep Reading: Flying is scary for most but this pilot had a life-changing experience at 23,000 feet in the sky.


  1. I absolutely REFUSE to switch my airline seat to help families and couples sit together – even when they start yelling, says single traveler JACI STEPHEN in a hilarious confession. So, do YOU sympathize with her? Daily Mail. Jaci stephen. August 25, 2022.
  2. Angry Vogue Williams slams passenger who refused to swap seats on a plane.Irish Mirror. Sandra Mallon. August 17, 2022