That nervous feeling waiting to see who sits next to you on your flight. Wouldn’t it be easier to find a conversation to pick up with a passenger after you have seen what activities you share, friends you have in common, and similar work background which may exist?

Two airline’s new social seating initiative enables you to view Facebook and LinkedIn profiles traveling and choose where and who you want to sit with based on their profile.

The initiative is hopeful to connect business partners, create potential business relationships, and meet people you know you have interest in meeting. The “social-networking dream” to some, raises numerous of other opinions for others.

The social seating does raise some concern with security and privacy issues, but KLM Royal Dutch Airlines and Malaysia Airlines allow passengers to opt out if they wish to withhold information. The airlines reassure customers they are only interested in helping them gain the most out of their flight experience, and will not share or sell any of their personal information.

On the other hand another airline is making a change to their seating policy as well moving in the opposite direction. Rather than allowing passengers to choose their most desired travel buddy, AirAsia X is allowing passengers to purchase discounted neighboring seats for additional room and privacy.

AirAsia X reports, they are the first airline in Asia to allow a passenger to purchase all three seats on a row. The cost is reasonable as the second seat costs around $10 additional and the second seat adds $13 to your bill

Both moves are birthed with the customer in mind trying to enhance the experience of the flight. Whether by adding the ability to know passengers prior to a physical interaction, or giving customers the benefit of freedom to relax in three unoccupied seats in a private-like flight.

In my opinion there is excitement in not knowing someone and learning more about them during the flight. Conversation happens to gain further understanding. I think it may actually weaken social skills to constantly seek a comfortable environment that is predictable based on one’s preferences. Social interaction is not to be avoided or controlled, I think there are advantages to be noted but I think complete control is dangerous.

I would revise the policy to alert you if any friends or co-workers are traveling on the flight, or a similar flight the same day. This has immediate benefits and doesn’t appear to be as much or a security risk.

Our insurance agency doesn’t believe one policy to be best, but sees pros and cons in both. Our insurance company in Georgia loves to discover interesting news and observe how people interact. The world changes constantly. Our insurance company understands sometimes unforeseen consequences occur and we want to help you succeed throughout all circumstances. Visit Southern States Insurance to learn more about our values and beliefs.

What are some unforeseen consequences you see in these policy changes? What is a concern or excitement to you?