Flying on an Embraer aircraft? Avoid the first row!

KLM business class breakfast on Embraer 190
KLM business class breakfast on the Embraer 190

This is more of a general advice if you are booked to fly on an Embraer 170/175/190 or an Embraer 135/140/145 on a flight within Europe. If you are booked to fly in business class, or if there is no business class/premium class and you have the option to pick a seat on the first few rows, avoid row 1!

Although the amount of legroom and personal space can be fairly limited in most seats on these planes, sitting on the first row will also mean you have the tray table stored in the armrest. And once folded out you have it so close to your body it actually gets hard to eat properly, and that is even if you are of average length and size. This advice would apply on pretty much all airlines with a standard intra-European configuration, with the same seats on all rows onboard the Embraer.

This morning I flew KLM business class on a flight operated by an Embraer 190. There was just one row of business class and the flight was completely sold-out ,so there was no other option but to select a seat on row 1. But it was quite a challenge to finish the breakfast, to balance the breakfast box, a glass of orange juice and a cup of coffee on the small table and especially with a passenger sitting in the adjacent seat, who most certainly would not have appreciated a drink-related accident. The table was so close to my body that there was simply little room left to move the arms. And taking a photo was definitely not easy either.

Fortunately it all worked out well, no spilled coffee anywhere, but next time, if I have a choice, I will avoid row 1.

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My interest in premium travels and frequent travels started in the 90’s, so to date I have over 20 years of premium travel experience. will mostly be about my own experiences, based on my own knowledge and my travel history, but you will also find news items, analyses, tips and tricks and reports from events.

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