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How to Handle a Child Kicking The Back of Your Airplane Seat
September 19, 2017
Few things are as annoying as spending your five-hour flights sitting right in front of a child who keeps kicking the back of your seat. This frequent (and annoying) behavior makes it tough to get anything done, or even nap, during your flight. There are a few solutions, all of which might just work, as long as you keep your cool. Losing your temper and snapping at the child – or his or her parents – will just make things worse.
1) Turn around and nicely ask the child to stop.
Sometimes children don’t realize that there’s a person sitting that seat that might be annoyed by their actions. Calling attention to that fact, nicely, of course, might help the situation. Simply turn around in your seat, get the child’s attention, and ask them to stop. As long as you use a polite tone of voice, this method might just work, once the child realizes that they are bothering you.
2) Don’t be afraid to talk to the parent(s).
In some cases, you may have to elevate your complaint (a little), by talking to the child’s parents. Again, keep your cool and use a light tone of voice – even joke around a little bit to make the situation less serious. After all, you’re just being bothered by their child, so it’s not really a life or death problem. Once the parents understand that their kid has been kicking their seat, it’s in their power to stop it, most of the time.
3) Ask the parent to switch seats with their child.
One solid solution, if the kid won’t stop kicking the seat and is ignoring their parents, is to have the two switch seats. This way, the parent will be located behind you, and you’ll be able to go back to enjoying your flight. Problem solved.
4) Get to know the parent and the child before your flight takes off.
Before your flight leaves the ground, take the time to introduce yourself to the parents and children sitting behind you. Putting names and personalities on the people sitting nearby makes everyone more likely to be on their best behavior.
5) Have the flight attendant get involved.
This is a last-ditch attempt to keep your sanity. If the parents refuse to switch seats or can’t seem to control their children, which happens, you’ll need to go to someone with more authority. However, go through all of the other suggestions here first, and remain as calm as possible in order to defuse the situation. Sometimes anger just makes thing worse, especially when you’re stuck sitting near the same people for the duration of your flight.