Debate rages over airplane etiquette after Virgin passenger refuses to swap seats: Jay Kloss

A passenger who asked a man to swap seats so he could sit next to his wife has sparked furious debate about airplane etiquette after being told ‘No’.

Melbourne couple Jay Kloss and his wife Zoe were separated in the business class section of a Virgin flight after being unable to book two adjoining seats.

She sat on the window while he sat on the aisle in the same row on the opposite side of the plane.

Mr Kloss in a TikTok video, with the caption ‘Am I in the wrong’, explains how he wandered over and politely asked if he could change seats with the traveller sitting next to his wife.

‘Hey, would you mind moving so I could sit with my missus? It’s her birthday’,’ Mr Kloss says.

‘And he just looks at me, he doesn’t respond.

‘I was like, ‘Is it possible if you switch to here?’

‘He was like, ‘No, I won’t, but I’ll sit here (Zoe’s window seat)’.

Mr Kloss explains that Zoe ‘isn’t a great flyer’ and can get ‘super nauseous’ so always needs to sit near a window.  

He continued to express his frustration in the viral video outraged that he was turned down.

‘Either way, he’s either getting the exact same spot (but) just on the other side of the aisle. But he won’t take that, he’s like, ‘Nah, I’ll only move to here (Zoe’s window seat)’,’ Mr Kloss says.

‘So, he’ll make us sit on either side of the aisle, just for no reason. 

‘It’s the same seat so anyway, I’m like, ‘Bro, really? You sure you can’t swap seats with us?’ And he just doesn’t respond to me.’

Mr Kloss then says Zoe asked the man to switch seats. 

‘Zoe says: ‘Hey, excuse me, is it possible for us to switch seats, is there some sort of problem? It’s my birthday today, I’d like to sit with my partner’.

‘And he’s like, ‘Nah, no problem, just not moving’.’

‘Like what the f**k? Am I missing something? 

‘Can somebody explain to me, what the hell is going on here? It’s the same seat, just on a different side of the aisle.’

Melbourne couple Jay Kloss and his wife Zoe (pictured) were separated in the business class section of a Virgin flight after being unable to book two adjoining seats. They asked a passenger to swap seats so they could sit together and he said ‘No’.


Is it okay to refuse if someone asks you to swap seats on an airplane?

  • Yes – You should have booked your own seat 113 votes
  • No – Just be polite 17 votes
  • Depends on the seat 22 votes

Eventually the passenger in the window seat next to Mr Kloss offered to swap with Zoe meaning the couple did sit next to each other. 

However, Mr Kloss was still fuming by flight’s end and said he had wanted to ‘slap’ the man who wouldn’t move but restrained himself only because he was on a plane.

His experience triggered a flurry of responses with many sharing sympathy for the traveller who said ‘No’.

‘The dude didn’t have to give up his seat, even if it was the nice thing to do,’ one wrote. 

‘Just gotta deal with people answering Y or N. Can’t expect it to be Y.’

Another said: ‘You’re in the wrong, should have booked seats together in the first place.’ 

One person objected to Mr Kloss’s arguments the seats were basically the same.

‘There is a big difference,’ the person said. 

‘Some people will only sit on either the right or left side of the plane.’ 

The couple's experience sparked furious debate on airplane etiquette

The couple’s experience sparked furious debate on airplane etiquette 

Another commented: ‘Bro I’m sick of people asking to switch seats. Book the right seat first.’

There were, however,  a few people who sided with Mr Kloss.

‘I would love to help out anytime,’ one wrote. 

‘The flights around Australia are so short so why not make two people happy. Life is too short to be unhelpful.’

Another wrote: ‘Nah I’m with you,’ 

‘Why wouldn’t he move?! Just a power trip.’