Recently I was seated beside a passenger who needed more space to sit and was almost taking away some on my space which made a 4 hour flight very uncomfortable. As flight was full I couldn't change my seat. Do I have any option under such situations like compensation from airline ? Are there any restrictions on max space which can be taken by passenger in a flight.

Just to add my question is more from my rights perspective. I understand the situation for other person, it's very difficult for him.


Just wanted to add that I was flying by GoIndigo airlines, it's a low cost airlines.

  • 2
    The other person could have easily booked two seats,giving both of you full comfort. They opted not to do so and save some money.
    – TooTea
    Commented Aug 21, 2022 at 7:06
  • 2
    Airlines likely have differing policies, which airline were you flying with?
    – Traveller
    Commented Aug 21, 2022 at 7:12
  • You could contact the airline’s customer service. On full service airlines you could probably score a few miles on their frequent flyer programme. On low cost airlines, unless they’re really in a great mood an willing to give you a voucher/credit for future travel I wouldn’t count on much. It would help if you made your situation known to the crew on board and a note was made of the situation, with some sort of acknowledgment that it was abnormal. Note that “almost taking away some of my space” probably doesn’t qualify for much. Economy class is cramped, and that’s on purpose.
    – jcaron
    Commented Aug 21, 2022 at 14:16
  • I was flying by GoIndigo airlines, I have added an edit to my question Commented Aug 21, 2022 at 15:57
  • GoIndigo doesn’t appear to have a specific passenger of size policy. It’s Carriage T&C state that A Customer travelling alone should be able to perform the following activities independently: Fastening and unfastening the seat belt;and Leaving the seat and getting to an emergency exit. but there’s no other potential size-related limitation eg use of seatbelt extension as far as I can see at a quick glance through goindigo.in/information/conditions-of-carriage.html
    – Traveller
    Commented Aug 22, 2022 at 11:30

2 Answers 2


Just to add my question is more from my rights perspective.

This will typically spelled out in the terms of conditions (or carriage of contract) of the airlines you are flying with.

Most airlines have rules that determine what a "passenger of size" is and what they need to do (buy an extra seat, etc). It's a politically and culturally sensitive topic, so the rules tend to be fairly well spelled out.

Ones they have determined that a passenger is NOT a "passenger of size" they are treated like any other passenger.

Chances are you are not entitled to any compensation, since the passenger next to you was most likely not identified as a "passenger of size".


Are there any restrictions on max space which can be taken by passenger in a flight.

Yes for some airlines. https://thepointsguy.com/2016/08/passengers-of-size-flight-attendant-insider/ gives a list of policies per airline, e.g.:

  • Alaska Airlines: Alaska requires passengers to buy extra seats if they can’t fit in a seat with the armrests in the down position.

  • American Airlines: If the passenger requires a seat belt extension and his/her body extends more than one inch beyond the edge of the armrest, that passenger is required to buy an extra seat.

  • 4
    Doesn't help the OP, unfortunately.
    – jcm
    Commented Aug 21, 2022 at 5:00
  • 1
    @jcm I'm answering their question. For future flights, alert attendants about the policy violation during boarding. Commented Aug 21, 2022 at 5:06
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    This is as best a partial answer and ignores what I see as the main part of the question.
    – Willeke
    Commented Aug 21, 2022 at 5:47
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    I don’t think this question can be answered fully unless the OP tells us which airline. The list provided in the linked article is very short and US-focused. This report discusses European airlines plussizetraveltoo.com/2022/02/… Note that this is an important safety issue
    – Traveller
    Commented Aug 21, 2022 at 7:15
  • 3
    @FranckDernoncourt the header starts with "my rights" your answer only mentions that those others have to pay extra, nothing at all for OP but that they should have objected at boarding, so no user after the flight.
    – Willeke
    Commented Aug 21, 2022 at 9:23

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