The Great Seat Debate – Which Would You Choose?

Today we’re talking about the Great Seat Debate, written in collaboration with Thomas Cook Airlines, all views are my own.

As a frequent-ish flyer, and having 6 long haul flights in the last 9 months under my belt, it’s a topic I have thought about many times. Although, mine is a story of two halves. One occurs BC – before children, and one which is my new and current travel experience.

The Great Seat Debate.

the great seat debate, woman walking through aiport with children on ride alongs

The Window Seat.

Now, BC there would be no question as to my seat preference on an aeroplane; Window. Of course! Although this seat does come with certain etiquette responsibilities, such as when to keep the window shade open, to whom the decision actually belongs to etc. The pros of having this cosy little nook all to oneself definitely outweighs any cons assigned to it. Watching the earth from above is mesmerizing, from the cloud formations in the day to the stars close enough to touch at night. I love following along with our journey using the in-flight maps and trying my best to spot mountain ranges or iconic landmarks during the journey.

Then there is the pure joy during a night flight; knowing you can snuggle up into your miniature pillow, eye mask on and window shade down. Sleeping (potentially) safe in the knowledge that no one is going to be asking you to move, just as you’ve managed to get comfy enough to drift off, so that they can get to the toilet. Waking to the comforting smell of the warm breakfast pastries wafting through the cabin, a hot drink offered before raising the window shade to discover a new country below.

view out of a plane window the great seat debate

Have Your Say In The Debate.

I know I’m not alone in this desire for a particular seat with a whopping 94% of people having a preference and in fact, 61% of those people surveyed by Thomas Cook Airlines would choose a window seat! And of course there’s the opportunity to snap away at some incredible in-flight shots to be shared on social media. Surprisingly (to me at least!) only 9% of travelers are doing this. I love seeing snaps like this when people share them! – If you have one to share use #TCAWindowSeat so I can see them!

Over the past 15 years I have flown around the world many times, taken countless flights, and I know well the elation that is finding out you’re seated next to a window once handed your boarding pass – winning!! However, and here’s where the story changes, then I became a parent. Flying was about to change forever. Or at least for the next decade or so!

child sitting next to the window on a plane looking cute the great seat debate

The Aisle Seat.

Flying with children (in fact this is a common theme when becoming a parent!) meant that all my preferences and joyful window-seat moments had to be sacrificed. Now there were little people who we wanted to make comfortable and cosy, whilst being educated from above about the wonder of our planet. Even better, if there was a middle seat available between us (which just so happened last week when we flew home from Canada!) allowing us to lay them down and form a bed for them to sleep in ultimate comfort and prevent jet lag setting in too badly, we were all for that. So now I’m an aisle seat kinda gal, and I feel like the last few years of this new location has enlightened me to some key things I’d been totally missing about sitting on the aisle!

There’s the obvious benefit of being able to nip to the loo, knowing you’re not going to have to disturb anyone, or go off for a little stretch and wander around the cabin. But the additional leg room given with the aisle seat is a huge added bonus I must admit I’d not really thought about! Being able to stretch out without having to upgrade to an extra leg room seat is amazing. This also applies to arm room – no more bumping elbows whilst chowing down on your airplane meal or having your glass, ok plastic cup, knocked whilst taking a sip of a well earned red wine. It also allows easy access to the over-head when needing to grab another wipe/toy/book for said child! As well as being in a great location to just grab your bag and go when the flight lands.

lady sitting on the asile seat of a plane - the great seat debate

So, there you have my take on the great seat debate! In conclusion I would have to say that despite spending two thirds of my life fully committed to window life, I can safely say that for now at least I would choose the aisle seat.

Now, what about you, get involved in the comments below and don’t forget to share your plane selfies using #TCAWindowSeat so I can see too!

Otis and Us




  1. June 24, 2019 / 9:15 pm

    I prefer the aisle seat when travelling with kids. They can’t go running off anywhere! #totstravel
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  2. June 18, 2019 / 12:01 pm

    I love the window seat and when I travel alone or just with my husband I always try and get it. BUT… since having kids I have had to sit in the aisle seat with my two beside me so that they can switch and swap next to the window for the flight. That way it’s only me that has to move around and not them too!

    • June 20, 2019 / 12:22 pm

      It’s like musical chairs when traveling with kids isn’t it!! I’m actually quite glad I’ve been pushed out to the aisle though as it’s pretty comfy!! x

  3. June 14, 2019 / 1:09 pm

    My kids make me have an aisle seat so they can have the window! I have no choice!

    • June 20, 2019 / 12:23 pm

      Uh, the middle is the WORST!! I definitely enjoy the ease of getting up and down without bothering people!! x

  4. June 14, 2019 / 12:33 pm

    I’ve only done a couple of long haul flights. One was so long ago I can’t remember, and was only 7 hours with a friend. The other to NZ, and we opted for seats with leg room by the emergency door one way, and the other way flights were quite empty after the stopover in LAX so we had space to spread out. I’d like the window one way, and aisle the other. Is that too greedy?

    • June 20, 2019 / 12:59 pm

      Maybe we could have the whole row next time?!!? K, thanks 😉 hahaha. I’m with you on this!! x

  5. June 11, 2019 / 1:33 pm

    If it’s a long flight and I’m traveling alone, I like the aisle. I don’t like having to ask people to move/climb over them and I like to get up and walk around a lot on long hauls.

    • June 11, 2019 / 8:56 pm

      Yes, I definitely agree! I’ve a new found love for the aisle! x

  6. Michelle Cantu
    June 9, 2019 / 5:54 pm

    The only seat I can’t do is in-between two random people. I get very nervous and stressed. If I had to choose window seat always.

    • June 20, 2019 / 1:00 pm

      Yes, I agree, the middle is the absolute worst!!

  7. Alexandra Cook
    June 8, 2019 / 11:24 am

    The window seat is my favorite whenever I had flight but of course, sacrifice is number one when traveling with kids. They prefer to see the view

    • June 20, 2019 / 1:00 pm

      For sure. Plus it keeps them in one place…for a little longer at least!!

  8. Mama Maggie's Kitchen
    June 8, 2019 / 1:00 am

    I’ve always wanted to sit on window seat! But’s a different story when you are riding with your kids.

  9. Sondra Barker
    June 7, 2019 / 8:27 pm

    I love the window seat. It is so calming for me to look down at the clouds!

    • June 20, 2019 / 1:01 pm

      I always love the view and spend such a long time looking out to it! x

    • June 20, 2019 / 1:01 pm

      I agree, if it’s a short flight most definitely the aisle!

  10. June 7, 2019 / 1:13 pm

    I never ride in airplane that’s why I don’t know what’s the feeling every time you ride there. Anyways, but for me since I love watching the view I want to always sit in window 😊. I love watching view specially I want to see the cloud and the birds 😊.

    • June 20, 2019 / 1:02 pm

      I love seeing the scenery change each time I look out of the window!

  11. Catherine Santiago Jose
    June 7, 2019 / 7:57 am

    I always preferred to have a window seat in each flights that I had but yes, I agree with you its totally different when you are flying with your kids you need to sacrifice your window seat for them.

    • June 7, 2019 / 12:47 pm

      I feel like after all these years of having the window seat I actually get the best of both worlds now because I can still see over their head for the view but I also get alllll that leg room! Winning! x

  12. June 7, 2019 / 2:52 am

    I am a window seat gal all the way! But it’s the best when I have a window seat and my husband is right next to me in the aisle seat. We usually drape ourselves over each other and fall asleep comfortably for the whole flight (we’re small people, haha). A few times our FAs commented on our sleeping arrangement in awe!

    • June 7, 2019 / 1:00 pm

      Ah, that’s so cute! Nice to be able to snuggle up. I had the children draped over me last time, not quite so comfy! x

  13. June 7, 2019 / 2:37 am

    lol!! It is a huge issue for sure. For me it is Isle seat, i am 6.1ft long so i need space to stretch my feet.

    • June 7, 2019 / 1:05 pm

      Wowwwww, yeah I bet you get so much more room there!

  14. June 7, 2019 / 1:09 am

    I’ve only flown once and chose an aisle seat.. planes scare the heck out of me. The kids and I flew to see family one year and they loved it. Much more than I did actually.

    • June 7, 2019 / 1:06 pm

      It can be scary for sure. Probably best not to look out the window if you’re scared I guess! xx

  15. June 7, 2019 / 12:33 am

    I usually like the aisle seat only because of my legs…..but when I in flights over 5 hours I do get a window!

    • June 7, 2019 / 1:06 pm

      It’s nice to know you can have a nap and not be disturbed for sure! x

  16. June 6, 2019 / 2:31 pm

    For me I much prefer a window seat, but with children I would take an aisle seat as they are always up and down for the toilet!

    • June 7, 2019 / 1:07 pm

      Yes! That’s it, isn’t it! At least they can sleep a bit better in the corner too x

  17. June 6, 2019 / 1:42 pm

    I always sit at the back (just because I read that was the safest place, haha!) and I prefer an aisle seat so the kids are wedged in! I hate flying and have no intention of looking out of the window!

    • June 7, 2019 / 1:08 pm

      Oh is it! I heard the wing was the safest place?! Haha, yes I can imagine it’s not what you would want to do if you’re afraid of flying. Good to get the kids tucked in so they can’t get in and out a thousand times!! xx

  18. June 6, 2019 / 6:24 am

    I’m flying with kids for the first time in October, to Australia! You have convinced me to go for the aisle seat. I am dreading it!

    • June 7, 2019 / 1:09 pm

      Oh wow!!! I would love to take mine there but it is SUCH a long way, you’ll have to let me know how it goes! I hope they sleep for a lot of it for you x

  19. June 6, 2019 / 2:56 am

    I prefer the aisle, I get a bit claustrophobic and like to be able to get out without disturbing anybody!

  20. June 5, 2019 / 9:52 pm

    I’d go for the aisle too. I’m not a good flyer so don’t feel like I need to see out of the window at all and I like that I can get up and get bags and go to the toilet.

    • June 7, 2019 / 1:10 pm

      Yes, great for long legs too! I think it’s great to show the children out the window too and then get them to sleep cosy after! x

  21. June 5, 2019 / 11:21 am

    Window life! Feels like you are on top of the world!

  22. June 5, 2019 / 10:49 am

    I would always choose window – not for the view but because as a bigger person I’d feel happier that i could squash the window as opposed to fellow passengers

    • June 7, 2019 / 1:12 pm

      Ah, that’s very sweet of you. It’s nice knowing they wont disturb you either!! x

    • June 7, 2019 / 1:12 pm

      Sounds like the perfect set up! x

  23. June 4, 2019 / 6:32 pm

    Always window for me! I just love looking down on the world like a patchwork quilt 🙂

    • June 7, 2019 / 1:12 pm

      hat is such a good way of describing it! It really is! x

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