Find out more about child free flights - do they exist, which airline offers them, and how much they cost.
Unless it’s an April Fools joke (like Ryanair and Westjet have both done in the past), there are currently no commercial airlines offering child free flights. However, this seems to be a growing demand for many travellers, particularly as many take flights for business purposes, or find it difficult to travel with the distractions of children - whether it’s crying, misbehaving, kicking seats, or making a general nuisance.
There are currently a small number of airlines offering child free zones on board:
IndiGo flights have a section of the aircraft where under 12s are banned from sitting. This ‘Quiet Zone’ is rows 1-4 and rows 11-14. Children are also not allowed on rows that contain emergency exits and those with extra legroom.
In 2013, Air Asia X introduced a quiet zone at the front part of the economy class, where passengers aged 12 and over can travel away from children and have a more peaceful flight. There are 63 seats available and are situated in the first 7 rows of economy class. The area is separated from the rest of the cabin by use of dividers, galleys and toilets. Air Asia X’s quiet zone seats come at an extra cost - when booking please make sure that you consult with one of the members of our customer service team with regards to seat selection.
Malaysia Airlines introduced a child free cabin on all flights with the Airbus A380 aircraft in 2012. This exclusion applies to the upper deck, and ensures that travellers under the age of 12 are not present in this area of 68 economy seats and 64 business class seats. Alongside this, babies are not allowed in the first class cabin of the A380s, alongside the first class section of Malaysia Airlines Boeing 747 aircraft. It must be noted that the upper deck economy cabin on the A380 aircraft do have 3 bassinets, and that the priority on flights would be for families, children and infants - if the main deck is full, then families with babies or children will be allowed in the upper deck.
Scoot currently offer the opportunity for travellers to pay extra to be sat away from a child. Scoot Airlines offer the ScootinSilence option - a quiet zone on the aircraft, situated between business class and economy class. This quiet zone is for passengers aged 12 and above to sit in one of 33 seats in ScootinSilence. Passengers also get off of the plane ahead of economy class passengers, which is an additional benefit.
Important note: most airlines with child free and quiet zone seats will charge extra to be seated in these areas. Please check with the Alternative Airlines customer service team before booking, so that you are fully aware of the additional costs this may involve.
There is still mass debate over whether there should be child free flights, or at least more flights with designated child free and quiet zone areas. Many travellers would say that their flight experience would be better if they were not seated near to children. However, at the same time, it is important to consider that parents and carers are exhausted and overworked, and some consider the quiet zones to be discriminatory towards those caring for infants and children.