Flying on an airplane can be exhilarating or the scariest thing you've ever done. To some travelers, the best seat is the one that's the cheapest. To others, the best seat on an aircraft is the most comfortable. In reality, the cheapest plane seat may just be the safest.

According to Time Magazine, the Federal Aviation Authority (FAA) conducted a 35-year study to determine the safest seat on a plane in the event of an emergency landing, or worse, a crash.

The FAA looked at crash data and deaths over a 35-year span, between 1985 and 2020. The information proved that the least safe seats on a plane are the seats in the middle of the aircraft at the wing. The middle aisle seats are the absolute most unsafe in the event of a crash. Think about crash photos and videos you've seen over the years. The middle of the plane is almost always where most of the damage and tragedy occurs.

FAA Findings—44% Fatality Rate (Middle Seats)

April Hamm, Screenshot
April Hamm, Screenshot
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The second most unsafe seats on an airplane are in the front 1/3 of the cabin. If you're flying on an aircraft that has a first-class section—seats in that area.

FAA Findings—38% Fatality Rate (Front Seats)

April Hamm, Screenshot
April Hamm, Screenshot
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The best chance to survive an airplane crash may be the most uncomfortable and smelly as they are located, in most cases, near a lavatory. The FAA claims the safest seats on an airplane, according to the 35-year data, are the two middle seats all the way in the rear of the cabin.

April Hamm, Screenshot
April Hamm, Screenshot
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According to simpleflying.com, another study suggests being near an emergency exit is best.

Another study done by the University of Greenwich also determined that, following a crash, those passengers sitting closest to an emergency exit had the best chance of getting out alive. -simpleflying.com

Remember, you are more likely to die from food poisoning, a fall from a ladder, drowning in the bathtub or a car accident than from a plane crash. Aviation today is safer than ever.

Safe travels!

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