Aer Lingus considering larger seats for overweight passengers

Aer Lingus is considering larger seats to be available to their bigger customers

Aer Lingus is considering installing larger seats on planes to make room for large passengers.

The Irish Independent reports that the airline, like many of its competitors, is keeping the option "under review" due to the rising obesity levels.

Aircraft manufacturer Airbus is offering airlines the option of installing extra-wide seats on the type of aircraft used for Aer Lingus.

The larger seats, which are 20 inches across instead of 18, would be installed as aisle seats and would cost more for passengers. However, passengers sitting in window and middle seats will have to make do with even less space as those seats will each lose an inch of width to make room for the larger seats.

"We'll be watching innovation that comes on stream in terms of new seating options that arrive on the market,"  said an Aer Lingus spokeswoman.

"We will also gauge the level of demand. We review matters such as this on a case by case basis.

"We have no current plans to introduce larger seats -- but as with all product innovation we will watch developments and keep matters under review."

Ireland is second only to Britain in European in levels of obesity with an estimated 60 percent of adults and 20 percent of children and teens in the country overweight or obese.

Samoa Air recently introduced a 'pay-by-weight' system, while Southwest charges overweight passengers for two seats.

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