Before I had kids, if I was heading somewhere on an airplane, it was my life’s goal to make sure that I wasn’t seated near a child. I didn’t want to deal with the possibility of a crying baby or a toddler kicking my seat for four hours straight.
But now I’m a mom and apparently if I want to travel somewhere via airplane with my four-year-old I have to sit with her…bummer!
Anyway, I know that my pre-kid me airplane preferences are not totally out there and in fact, many other travelers prefer to fly without kids around. One airline is trying to capitalize on this by offering flyers kid-free flights for an extra fee.
Corendon Airlines says that it will sell tickets for an adults-only zone, meaning no one under 16, on flights between Amsterdam and Curacao starting in November.
The airline says people traveling on their flights without children will get quiet surroundings. This also has the potential to work great for stressed parents who constantly worry that their crying or fidgeting kids will annoy fellow passengers.
The section — which the airline calls the “Only Adult” zone — will be located at the front of the plane, closed off by walls and a curtain. There will be 93 standard seats that can be reserved by passengers 16 and older for €45, or about $48, per flight. There will also be nine seats in the zone with extra legroom that will cost passengers €100, or about $108.
“On board our flights, we always strive to respond to the different needs of our customers,” Atilay Uslu, the founder of Corendon, said in a statement shared on the airline’s website.
Uslu added that Corendon — which is the first Dutch airline to introduce a child-free zone — is “trying to appeal to travelers looking for some extra peace of mind during their flight.”
“We also believe this can have a positive effect on parents traveling with small children,” Uslu also said in his statement. “They can enjoy the flight without worrying if their children make more noise.”
Corendon is not the first airline to try a kid-free section.
Scoot, an airline based in Singapore, sells a section where passengers must be at least 12 years old to sit.
In 2012, Malaysia Airlines announced it would not allow anyone under 12 in a 70-seat economy section on the upper deck of its Airbus A380 jets. The airline later backtracked, saying that if there were too many families with children and infants to fit in the lower deck, it would find room for them in the adult economy section upstairs.
I think for the most part — unless you’re letting your kid pour glitter all over the stranger next to them — that parents are just trying to survive the flight just as much as the rest of the child-free passengers.
This could honestly be a win-win situation for all travelers. People who are constantly shaming parents and chiding children for being children can pay 50 bucks to stop complaining, and parents can chill out a little bit about trying to make sure their kid sits still and stays quiet.