Kirsty Leanne, 29, from Shropshire, regularly shares travel tips for larger-bodied people and has built up a following of 110,000 people on TikTok.
As a frequent flyer, Kirsty says it is uncomfortable if she is seated next to another person – for both them and her.
While she says she “does what she can” to ensure the person next to her is comfortable, Kirsty has revealed she has a clever trick for securing a second seat next to her to avoid being pressed up next to someone.
She shared her advice on TikTok, where the video racked up two million views and 72,000 likes.
In the clip, she says: “How as a plus size person I get an empty seat next to me on almost every flight I take.
“One of the most daunting things about flying as a plus size person is how much space you’re going to have.
“With airlines making it so difficult to book a second seat, this tip has definitely saved me so many hours of uncomfortable flights.
“All you need to do when you’re boarding is find a flight attendant and ask this question.”
Kirsty is then seen asking an attendant if there are any rows where two seats next to each other are available.
The attendant agrees to check after boarding is complete.
Kirsty adds: “This obviously doesn’t work every time and if it’s a full flight it’s a little more difficult, but it’s always worth asking.
“I know how hard it can be to advocate for yourself but remember that you deserve to be comfortable too.”
Kirsty has been using this method for months after realising how simply asking the question could lead to a more comfortable journey.
“A while back I was on a flight that had a few empty rows and mine was full. I pulled a FA to the side and asked if it was possible to move and she said yes, which made so much difference,” Kirsty, who shares tips on her blog, PlusSizeTravelToo, told http://NeedToKnow.co.uk .
“I started asking more and more and eventually I learnt the best time to ask is when you board.
“The FAs can help you directly and if there are any seats leftover, they’ll ensure you’re able to move into them (as lots of people like to move without asking – which I don’t recommend).
“Airlines make it so difficult to buy a second seat under the same name and passport details, including when it comes to the cost.
“This is a great way to get a little bit of extra space without taking a seat from anyone else.
“Once doors are closed, those seats are no longer going to earn the airline any money, so effectively it’s harmless.
“When it comes to buying a second seat, it’s worth noting that this isn’t always possible. Some airlines will not allow you to do it and if you contact their customer service line, they don’t know what to do either.
“Other airlines do allow it, but they will give your seat away if it’s overbooked. Some airlines also don’t have seats that are ‘comfortable’ if purchased as a two, as their armrests don’t raise or they don’t raise fully.
“I wish it was a simple solution to make everyone comfortable but unfortunately, I don’t think it ever will be.
“This way, the flight is more comfortable for both people.
“I want everyone on a flight to be comfortable and this is a great way to ensure that. If it doesn’t work, unfortunately I have to sit in my assigned seat but I do make sure I’m doing what I can to make people comfortable in that situation.
“Ultimately, I wish airlines had better policies to better help passengers of all sizes be comfortable.”