Fresh on the heels of the news that the American Medical Association has finally declared obesity a disease, Samoa Air has announced a new feature in their tiny fleet of planes to accommodate their overweight passengers: a nice, roomy couch.
Essentially just two regular airplane seats fused together without an armrest, these new couches were implemented in response to the company’s largely large client base. Though they only have three small planes in their arsenal, Samoa Air services a country where 80% of the population is overweight – so really this is just a simple case of creating supply for a very hefty demand (pun intended).
This move is not the first that Samoa Air has taken regarding their passengers’ weight problems. The regional airline also operates the industry’s only pay-as-you-weigh pricing scheme, which charges passengers based on their combined body and luggage weight. And since larger passengers are paying more than their waify seatmates, the powers that be figured they might as well get some more luxurious (or at least, more appropriately portioned) seats.
But that’s not all:
The new seat will also have 14 inches of extra legroom, created by the removal of the row in front. The initiative includes the adoption of a boarding ramp, as opposed to steps.
“Most people around 130 kilos (285 pounds) struggle to get up most steps, so we’ve redesigned ours into a ramp to help bigger passengers get to their seats,” said Langton.
I often look in the mirror while sobbing and tugging on flaps of skin around my midsection, screaming “I’M OBESE!” loud enough for God or a nearby plastic surgeon to hear. Seeing as I’m 6’3″ and weigh 160 lbs, I’ve always just chalked that up to my crippling body dysmorphic disorder – but now that I know I can get over a foot of extra leg room for eating myself to death, I figure I should let myself go a little.