Travel

Plus Size Travel: Would you Buy your own Seatbelt Extender?

July 29 2013 | CeCe Olisa

Every time I fly I wonder if the seatbelt on the plane is going to fit.

As I mentioned on Instagram yesterday, I flew on one plane and had room to spare on my seatbelt… four days later on another plane, I needed an extender:

It used to bother me a lot more than it does now. But as time passes I just accept the fact that if the airplane seatbelt doesn’t fit… I’ll spend a few minutes trying to quietly flag down a flight attendant to help me. Back in the day, I used to cover my lap with my jacket in the hope that no one would notice that I wasn’t buckled in, but that’s not safe so I try not to do that anymore. On the other hand if the seatbelt on a plane fits, I do a quiet happy dance in my seat and everyone thinks I’m a weirdo, but that’s fine.

Before #PSPfit, I always had to ask for an extender. Now that I’m down 40 pounds, it really depends on the plane. Sometimes I have to ask and sometimes I don’t. There is a lot of shame associated with needing/asking for a seatbelt extender. I’ve heard horror stories about flight attendance who have been obnoxious and rude to plus size passengers when giving them an extender. Thankfully, I’ve always had polite/discreet attendants who slip me the extender like we’re doing a drug deal.

I’ve heard a few of you say that you’ve invested in your own seatbelt extenders. In my opinion safety is the most important thing, so we all need to do what’s necessary to be safe. If you find that you’d rather risk your safety than risk being embarrassed while asking for a seatbelt extender, investing in your own extender might be a good option for you. Here are some of the options I found online:

Would you purchase your own seatbelt extender?

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43 responses on “Plus Size Travel: Would you Buy your own Seatbelt Extender?

  1. Jackie Brown

    I have just flown to Aussie and needed an extender, If I sucked my tummy in tight I might have been able to do the seatbelt up, but not worth the pain. This is the first time I have used an extender, I wasn’t embarrassed, in fact I was surprised how many people needed one. I just hope people don’t get put of flying because of their size…..

    1. Ranishya Brown

      I have never flew before but that is one reason I don’t fly….I’m so nervous that my weight would cause me to not have a very comfortable flight; And then I am generally nerved anyway about flying, so why add extra insult to injury

  2. hippygalnz@gmail.com

    I have just flown to Aussie and needed an extender, If I sucked my tummy in tight I might have been able to do the seatbelt up, but not worth the pain. This is the first time I have used an extender, I wasn’t embarrassed, in fact I was surprised how many people needed one. I just hope people don’t get put of flying because of their size…..

    1. ranishyabrwn@aol.com

      I have never flew before but that is one reason I don’t fly….I’m so nervous that my weight would cause me to not have a very comfortable flight; And then I am generally nerved anyway about flying, so why add extra insult to injury

  3. Kayleigh

    If the FA’s were always polite about it, great — but since you can’t know that in advance….I guess I’d hate to be stuck on a plane for who knows how long after dealing with an obnoxious FA…so I guess it would be worth it to me to buy my own in order to avoid all that. The prices seem very reasonable to me, so why not?

  4. fashionably.later@yahoo.com

    If the FA’s were always polite about it, great — but since you can’t know that in advance….I guess I’d hate to be stuck on a plane for who knows how long after dealing with an obnoxious FA…so I guess it would be worth it to me to buy my own in order to avoid all that. The prices seem very reasonable to me, so why not?

  5. vanessa jackson

    For me I would ask and would care less who knew. My life, safety is more important…knowing how sarcastic and flip at the mouth I can be, I don’t think a FA would dare to go one on one while on “their job”. I think it would definitely serve as a reminder that I need to stay on my journey to lose weight though. I wouldn’t purchase an extender, I would use the moment as a motivator and challenge, that by the next trip I won’t need one.

  6. lilshine7@gmail.com

    For me I would ask and would care less who knew. My life, safety is more important…knowing how sarcastic and flip at the mouth I can be, I don’t think a FA would dare to go one on one while on “their job”. I think it would definitely serve as a reminder that I need to stay on my journey to lose weight though. I wouldn’t purchase an extender, I would use the moment as a motivator and challenge, that by the next trip I won’t need one.

  7. Kelly

    I bought a set of three, one for each of the seat belt types used by the major carriers. I have never regretted it and it takes away some of the anxiety I experience when flying.

  8. lusciousk@gmail.com

    I bought a set of three, one for each of the seat belt types used by the major carriers. I have never regretted it and it takes away some of the anxiety I experience when flying.

  9. Wendy

    I did buy my own. It was pure happiness when I never had to get it out of my purse, but the peace of mind I had knowing I had my bases covered was totally worth the money!

  10. wendywcobb@gmail.com

    I did buy my own. It was pure happiness when I never had to get it out of my purse, but the peace of mind I had knowing I had my bases covered was totally worth the money!

  11. Caitlin

    The flight attendants might not let you use your own because it hasn’t been inspected in accordance with their requirements, which could open them to a lawsuit if it failed and you hurt yourself or another passenger. Just an FYI.

    1. Amy

      Most of them don’t notice. I’ve flown most carriers in the US and some International and they don’t pay the slightest attention to my extender.

  12. paraveina@gmail.com

    The flight attendants might not let you use your own because it hasn’t been inspected in accordance with their requirements, which could open them to a lawsuit if it failed and you hurt yourself or another passenger. Just an FYI.

    1. amyjohn@gmail.com

      Most of them don’t notice. I’ve flown most carriers in the US and some International and they don’t pay the slightest attention to my extender.

  13. Curvy CEO

    First off, 40lbs? Wow – congrats!! Second, I went ahead and bought my own extender. I travel so much it was more about practicality than anything else. It definitely does lead to less anxiety for me while traveling…and since I am pear-shaped I *always* need an extender.

  14. curvy@curvyceo.com

    First off, 40lbs? Wow – congrats!! Second, I went ahead and bought my own extender. I travel so much it was more about practicality than anything else. It definitely does lead to less anxiety for me while traveling…and since I am pear-shaped I *always* need an extender.

  15. Amy

    The first time I had to ask for one was really embarrassing. After I while, I just accepted that it’s something I need and not to be worried about other people’s opinions. But I got sick of the wait and wondering if they’d remember I had asked for it. The feeling that you will be forgotten for more important passenger needs, because really, it’s your own fault (heavy sarcasm intended) that you’re so heavy. So, I ran to Amazon and I managed to find one for only $15. It’s worth keeping your eyes open for it. Although, if you fly often, $40 is still worth it. The hard part is remembering to bring it with you.

  16. amyjohn@gmail.com

    The first time I had to ask for one was really embarrassing. After I while, I just accepted that it’s something I need and not to be worried about other people’s opinions. But I got sick of the wait and wondering if they’d remember I had asked for it. The feeling that you will be forgotten for more important passenger needs, because really, it’s your own fault (heavy sarcasm intended) that you’re so heavy. So, I ran to Amazon and I managed to find one for only $15. It’s worth keeping your eyes open for it. Although, if you fly often, $40 is still worth it. The hard part is remembering to bring it with you.

  17. leashyann

    I’m flying for the first time in years on Saturday (two flights in one day) and I’m less scared about the seatbelt extender and more concerned I won’t fit into Southwest’s ridiculous 16.2 inch seats! If you or anyone here can give me any insight/advice that would be greatly, greatly, GREATLY appreciated. I’m 5’6″ and a size US 18 (I’m all hips, I’m a pear to a T) if that helps at all. :/

  18. charmedp326@gmail.com

    I’m flying for the first time in years on Saturday (two flights in one day) and I’m less scared about the seatbelt extender and more concerned I won’t fit into Southwest’s ridiculous 16.2 inch seats! If you or anyone here can give me any insight/advice that would be greatly, greatly, GREATLY appreciated. I’m 5’6″ and a size US 18 (I’m all hips, I’m a pear to a T) if that helps at all. :/

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