An American influencer who is on a mission to make travel “an equal experience for all, regardless of size” has outlined the changes she wants hotels to make to be more accommodating – including wider hallways, elevators and bathrooms.
Jaelynn Chaney, who is behind a campaign for plus-sized travellers to be given free airline seats so they can fly comfortably, listed her requests for hotels in a TikTok video.
“I am on a mission to revolutionise the travel industry and make it a more accessible, accepting and accommodating place for all. The needs for plus-size travellers matter just as much as everybody else,” she said.
Ms Chaney, who is based in Vancouver, Washington, said size-inclusive hotel amenities were crucial to make plus-sized travellers feel welcomed.
“We deserve an environment that respects our needs and body diversity,” she said.
Her list included sturdy wide chairs without armrests in guest rooms and common areas, beds with a higher weight capacity, wider bathroom facilities, and spacious elevators and hallways.
Ms Chaney said this would allow “easy movement of larger individuals and those utilising mobility devices”.
She also wants hotels to install grab bars in showers and near toilets, offer adjustable handheld shower heads, raise toilet seats, and supply bigger bath towels and robes that go up to a size 6XL.
Ms Chaney believes there should be pool lifts and hand rails at the entry to every pool, there should be oversized sun loungers, and hotel restaurants should have more roomy seating options with sturdy chairs.
She said staff should be trained “to be respectful, understanding and accommodating to travellers of all sizes”.
Ms Chaney said information about these amenities, such as weight limits and seat dimensions, should be published on hotel websites.
“This will help plus-sized travellers make informed decisions,” she said.
Fellow TikTokers were critical of the travel influencer’s list, highlighting the expense of the changes.
“As someone in hotel management, many budgets simply wouldn’t allow for this,” one person explained. “You’re asking for tens, hundreds, and even million dollar adjustments for a small percentage of guests. I’m not saying it wouldn’t be great to offer these things … but it’s pretty unrealistic as someone who has sat in on many budgeting meetings as a consultant for multiple hotels.”
“I agree with some but others are just not possible. The amount of money it will take to make all of these changes is unreal,” agreed another.
One supporter said: “I agree … things need to change according the lives people of many diverse people who are not Quote on Quote the average size or body extremities.”
“I travel a fair amount here/in Europe. I am not a small person. I have no interest in the world making allowances for my size. I plan/adjust as needed,” disagreed someone else.
Ms Chaney, who has more than 95,000 followers on Instagram and 134,000 on TikTok, started her petition about airline travel in April and has gained more than 35,000 signatures.
The petition calls for the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to “mandate that all airlines have a comprehensive customer-of-size policy that prioritises the comfort and wellbeing of ALL passengers”.
The specific requests include free additional seats to “ensure a safe and comfortable flying experience”, larger lavatories and seat belt extenders.