Poll: What size did you wear when you no longer needed a plane seatbelt extender?

on 4/7/11 3:50 pm

One of my goals is to go on this trip I have planned next month without a seatbelt extender.  Not sure if it's going to happen.  I took a trip a few months pre-op and definitely needed one.  I was 320 and a size 26/28 pants (I'm unfortunately pear-shaped).

My trip is in less than a month and I'm now 242 and a 20 pants.  My waist fits an 18 but my thighs definitely do not, except in stretchy things like yoga pants.

So, just as a poll: what was your weight / size when you did or did not need a seatbelt extender on the airplane?


Temporarily holding on losing more because I'm gaining!  Pregnant with my first baby (a boy!) due June 2013, after two rounds of IVF.  SO GRATEFUL!

on 4/7/11 4:22 pm - Phoenix, AZ
 Well, I can tell you what size I was when I started needing one!  I think I was around 275, size 22 bottoms. The weird thing is, that on my 2 flights out, and 1 flight back, I was able to use the regular seat belt. Then we changed planes & it didn't fit. Go figure.

If you're 242 and size 20 pants, you should be fine.
Lady Lithia
on 4/7/11 5:01 pm
I flew seven times during my pre-op six month supervised diet, and on six out of seven planes I was able to squish everything in.... I was down to 310 and still wearing a size 28 though I might have fit a 24 (I'm hourglass shaped)... on teh seventh plane, I put my jacket on my lap and hid the fact I couldn' buckle. I didn't even know there were seat belt extenders.... I thought they would just kick me off the plane. The next time I rode on an airplane I was at goal....the seats were STILL cramped.

~Lady Lithia~ 200 lbs lost! 
March 9, 2011 - Coccygectomy!
I chased my dreams, and my dreams, they caught me!
giraffesmiley.gif picture by hardyharhar_bucket

on 4/7/11 5:09 pm
VSG on 10/01/10 with
I was a 20 when I flew to CA in Feb and I fit just fine.

I only needed one after I was over 300 and a size 28.


Liquid Diet       : 330 Day of Surgery : 302 - my scale Goal                   : 160
on 4/7/11 6:17 pm
I was a size 18 (a few months ago) when I went to the UK and I fit very nicely.  I does depend on the aircraft though.  I had two flights and one seatbelt was quite a bit shorter than the other, but I fit in both (one with less room to spare though)!  I think you'll do fine!  
 HW 315/ SW 297 /CW 173 /GW 150, size 8/10, 5'8 tall  (Updated December 1)
Amber L.
on 4/7/11 8:31 pm - Sweden
You'll be fine. The size of the aircraft seems to be a big factor. I was on an American Eagle flight at a size 22 and the belt just would not reach. It was one of those tiny planes with one seat on one side and two seats on the other. Of course, when I asked for an extender, the flight attendant made a HUGE deal out of it. So, after my short flight, I just dropped the extender in my bag. Yep. I am a thief. But now, I have my own extender and I never have to ask for one on a plane. I usually don't need one except on the small aircraft, but it's a comfort to know it's there in my bag and I can slip it on without a big deal if need be. I am not flying until 4-5 months after surgery and my goal is to leave the extender at home and not even think about it.
Pretty pretty please, don't you ever ever feel like you're less than f*ckin' perfect.


on 4/8/11 6:30 am
I detested asking for an extender too.  I just couldn't handle the embarassment after that first time.  So I bought one on EBay -  they aren't that expensive - I think mine was like $10 plus shipping.  I've got one around here somewhere.  Before surgery I needed at least 5 inches of that danged extender and I was a size 32.  Six weeks post op, the seatbelt fit perfectly (I was wearing 24/26's). Last time I flew was February and that was less than 7 months post op .  I had about 5 or 6 extra inches of seatbelt - and I had just gotten into size 18 jeans.  

I think it does vary by airline - but I have had similar "fits" on Delta's 757 and 767's, and on USAir's Airbus - the one that sits 5 or 6 across in coach.

Only negative thing about the weight loss is that I can't justify paying extra for first class - even though coach aka cattle car is not spacious (LOL), the coach seats now fit me better than the first class seats fit preop.  

And that doesn't even address the issue of the stares I used to get - you could almost see people thinking "please don't let your seat be here".  LOL.  

To quote a Disney movie "It's a whole new world".

Actually I think I'll post the lyrics to that song in it's own thread - it really does describe my WLS experience :)

Like the butterfly,  I have the strength and the hope to believe 
In time I will emerge from my cocoon... Transformed. Kirsti A. Dyer, MD, MS

Amber L.
on 4/8/11 6:50 am - Sweden
Oh, the looks of, "Please don't be sitting here!" is something I try to explain to my wife, but if you haven't experienced them, you don't get it.  The thing is, I never made anyone on a plane uncomfortable because I made myself so incredibly uncomfortable.  I crossed my arms and never used the arm rests, I made sure I never inched close to the middle line.  It's funny that thin people don't usually have the same courtesy.  
Pretty pretty please, don't you ever ever feel like you're less than f*ckin' perfect.

(deactivated member)
on 4/7/11 9:08 pm
I just flew last month and I'm 5' 3.5" and I weigh about 295-a retty consistent size 24 across the board. No need for a seat belt extender for me!  I'm not sure what airline you are flying but I have found United's seats to be pretty roomy in comparison to some others.

Have a good trip!
on 11/30/16 7:41 pm

 did you fly economy?

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