Story at a glance:

  • Airlines and resorts are built for “traditional bodies,” plus-sized influencers say.
  • Most airlines, such as America, Delta and United, have seats with the width of 17-inches.
  • Southwest Airlines is more inclusive to plus-size passengers than other airlines, offering additional seats for plus-size people at no cost.

People who are considered plus size are faced with discrimination when it comes to traveling and residing at resorts, social influencers say.

Body positive advocates told The New York Post they want size-inclusive seats and seat belts, durable decor, roomier restrooms and excursions for everybody.


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Fashion influencer Stephanie Nadia told The New York Post that VIP treatment at airlines and resorts is reserved for “traditional bodies” and that when she asks for accommodating seats or even a hotel bathrobe, she gets the impression that fat people are not welcomed.

Most airlines, such as American, Delta and United, have seats with the width of 17-inches, and they require bigger guests to buy a separate seat at the full cost of their initial ticket.

It has been reported that airline seats are considerably too small for one’s safety as the matter of evacuating within 90 seconds was the subject of a Federal Aviation Administration’s Civil Aerospace Medical Institute test, The Washington Post reported.  

“I love traveling, but having to cram into those small plane seats … gives me anxiety,” TikTok user Mary Fran Donnelly, 27, told The NY Post. “I don’t want to have to ask for a seat belt extender or worry that they’ll make me buy an extra seat.” 

Her series, “Traveling as a Fat Person,” has more than 7 million views and chronicles the struggles of traveling while fat.

“The traveling industry should outfit planes to suit everybody’s needs without bigger people having to be embarrassed or uncomfortable,” she said.

Southwest Airlines is more inclusive than other airlines, allowing passengers to purchase an extra seat and receive a refund after their trip is over. 

“We are very proud of our policy, as we feel it provides comfort and hospitality for all of our customers,” a Southwest spokesperson said. “It was a creative solution to what can be a sensitive topic, and we’ve found that our customers appreciate it.”


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Published on Jul 15, 2021