Ryanair has requested permission from the Irish Aviation Authority (IAA) to install vertical seating on its planes. According to the Telegraph, this "seating" arrangement consists of bar stools with seat belts. The carrier has already discussed the idea with Boeing, and a spokesman for the airline said, "'If they [the IAA] approve it, we'll be doing it."
The Telegraph also reports that stand-up seating may not be Ryanair's idea. CEO Michael O'Leary apparently got the inspiration from Chinese carrier Spring, which floated a similar plan in the past. Stand-up seating could make room for up to 50 percent more passengers while cutting costs by 20 percent.
Once again, know that you get what you pay for with these ultra-low-cost carriers. This, of course, is not a bad thing in and of itself. Flights on Ryanair (or Spirit) can be very cheap for those willing to put up with the hassle. What sets Ryanair apart, however, is that its cost-cutting ideas are often packaged in what can only be described as disdain for its customers. For the uninitiated, here are some recent highlights from the saucy Irish airline:
As for "vertical seating," I'll believe it when I see it—but unfortunately, I believe that I'll see it. What do you think? Leave a comment below with your thoughts.
Update, July 7: Scott McCartney at the Middle Seat Terminal blog throws some much-needed cold water on this story.