ANKARA: In a bid to cater to passengers seeking a more peaceful and child-free travel experience, airlines are introducing “adults-only” sections on their flights, signaling a shift in the way we fly.
Corendon Airlines, a Turkish carrier, is set to launch its “adults-only” zone on flights between Amsterdam and Curacao starting this November. The unique offering aims to provide travelers without children a tranquil environment, free from the potential disruptions of crying or fidgeting kids.
According to Corendon Airlines, this special section will comprise 93 regular seats and nine extra-legroom seats, strategically positioned at the front of their Airbus A350 jets, which typically accommodate 432 passengers. A partition, either in the form of a wall or curtain, will separate this exclusive area from the rest of the cabin.
To secure a seat in this child-free zone, passengers will incur an additional reservation fee. This fee will start at 45 euros ($49) for regular seats and increase to 100 euros ($109) for the extra-legroom seats.
Travel industry experts weigh in on the concept. Brett Snyder, a travel agency owner and author of the Cranky Flier blog, suggests that such an offering could be highly appealing, especially for those seeking a more peaceful journey. However, he notes that noise might still travel within the adult zone, likening it to the experience of being in the last row of the non-smoking section during the days when smoking was permitted on flights.
Scott Keyes, founder of the flight-search site Going, believes that Corendon’s reasonable fee could attract a significant number of passengers. He also emphasizes the marketing value of such a unique offering for smaller, lesser-known airlines.
While Corendon Airlines is pioneering this initiative in Europe, it’s worth noting that Scoot, a low-cost airline based in Singapore, has already been offering a similar section, restricting passengers to those aged 12 and above.
This idea isn’t entirely new, as Malaysia Airlines attempted a child-free section back in 2012. The airline initially announced that children under 12 would not be allowed in a 70-seat economy section on the upper deck of its Airbus A380 jets. However, this decision was later reversed, with the airline stating it would accommodate families with children in the adult economy section upstairs if the lower deck was full.
As these airlines venture into providing exclusive “adults-only” sections, the travel industry will be closely watching the response from passengers. It remains to be seen whether this concept will gain traction and become a common feature in air travel or remain a niche offering for those willing to pay a premium for a child-free experience.
With the demand for peace and quiet during flights evidently on the rise, the airline industry is adapting to meet the evolving preferences of its passengers, making air travel a more customizable experience for all.