The new year may still be in its infancy, but the airline drama sure isn’t letting up. Though to be fair, this incident happened in November. According to Your Tango, “a couple flying Southwest decided to handpick the perfect passenger” to sit beside them.

It opened the door to all manner of opinion, criticism and speculation.

“Sounds like an open marriage that uses a swing,” wrote one user in the MSN news comments section.  “Why would the husband tell her it’s up to her if he’s okay to sit with them?  As long as the person doesn’t seem to be noisy or smelly, why does she need to approve him?”

Compared to the staggering amount of flight cancellations over the festive period, this is hardly the worst thing concerning Southwest Airlines. Nonetheless, it did spark interesting conversations on Instagram and elsewhere.

What Happened?

On Instagram, Jeff Martin shared a video showing his wife sitting in the aisle seat while he sat by the window. The middle seat was unoccupied.

Next to the video was the caption “Southwest Airlines Etiquette.”

Your Tango reported, “if you’ve ever been on a Southwest flight, you know the terror of being some of the last people to board the plane — searching for an open spot.

“The woman shown in the video seems to make contact with passengers just long enough to see if they’d be the ‘perfect’ fit for the random seat next to them. “

The "Ideal" Seatmate Was Eventually Found

The ideal seatmate eventually came along- a young man wearing headphones.

The wife tapped him on the shoulder and offered up the spare seat. He agreed and slid into the aisle seat while the wife sat in the middle.

“For how late I was, I thought I’d be scrunched in the middle somewhere,” the young man said.

Instagram Users Were Critical

The couple likely didn’t intend to cause any real harm. But several Instagram users took issue with their actions.

“The fact that people do stuff like this doesn’t surprise me,” wrote Cynthia Wilkins. “The fact that people are not ashamed, but advertise that they do this is what floors me. If I were flying solo, and there was an empty space up front, I’d take it whether you wanted me to or not. You paid for two seats. You have no right over any of the other seats.”

Others questioned what the criteria was for the so called “ideal” person.

“So what’s the criteria that gets you ‘cancelled’ for the seat?” asked Fernando Munoz.  “Ethnicity, perceived religion, skin color, hygiene, size/ weight? Something about this doesn’t seem right. If I knew what they were doing, I would have jumped right into the middle seat and fake snored all the way.”