Travel News

Airplane Feel Good Story of the Year: Passenger Fulfills 88-Year Old Woman’s Dream

Written by Charlie

Here is a story of great kindness aboard an airplane when a business class passenger fulfills an elderly economy passenger’s dream

We have all seen the news stories about the airplane passengers who go crazy or a flight crew member who lashes out at a passenger or just a general heightened sense of unpleasantness when big delays strike.

Airplane Kindness Story of the Year

That’s why it is really nice to see and read stories like this about someone who acted in a very unselfish way to help out a fellow passenger. This story has been around for a couple of weeks now but I wanted to close out 2019 with it as I feel it was really the best story I read about kindness with airplane passengers this year.

The setting for this act of kindness was on a Virgin Atlantic flight from New York to London. The one telling the story was a Virgin Atlantic flight attendant (complete with photos) and the two passengers involved made a great seat swap, thanks to the incredible kindness of one..

Jack was traveling to London to return home with his family and his mother had surprised the family by getting Upper Class (business class) tickets for the trip.  Violet, an 88-year old retired nurse who had made the trip to see her daughter, was riding in the back of the plane in economy. Apparently, she had been putting off that trip due to knee replacement surgery.

He went looking for someone to swap a seat with and found Violet and (according to this article by the WP) asked, “Excuse me, are you traveling by yourself? I’ve got a seat in business, and I’d like to give it to you.”

The swap was made and the whole thing captured by flight attendant Leah and you can read her story and the accompanying photos here.

I love that he took her seat, didn’t say anything or expect anything, and just did it for the joy of helping someone to enjoy the fulfillment of their dream. Good for him and Virgin Atlantic decided to go further and announced that for the rest of 2019, they would upgrade the oldest person on each flight.

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About the author


Charlie has been an avid traveler and runner for many years. He has run in marathons around the world for less than it would cost to travel to the next town - all as a result of collecting and using miles and points. Over the years, he has flown hundreds of thousands of miles and collected millions of miles and points.
Now he uses this experience and knowledge to help others through Running with Miles.