New Airline Seats -- Like Riding a Cramped Saddle?

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If you think riding on an airplane is like being a sardine packed in a can, just wait until you see the new SkyRider airline seat.

The new passenger seat setup comes only in the upright position and makes it possible to fit up to 40 percent more passengers on an airplane. The only thing sacrificed is passenger comfort -- there's less room, and passengers will feel even more cramped than ever before.

The SkyRider's chair looks like a roller coaster seat, rides like a saddle, and gives the passenger a lot less space. The narrow seats and crammed quarters will accommodate more passengers, but could drop ticket prices by up to 30 percent.

The seat has not been approved by the Federal Aviation Administration or purchased by any major airline. However, it drew a lot of interest when it debuted this week at the Aircraft Interiors Expo at the Long Beach Convention Center in California.

"We would like to help an industry that is not making a profit," Fredrik Meloni, a sales manager for Italy-based Aviointeriors, the designers and manufacturers of the SkyRider seat, told the Los Angeles Times.

Some test passengers said the seats caused them to experience numbness and cramping. So far, airlines have not expressed an interest in installing them.

Other money-saving ideas on display at the expo included an in-seat entertainment system with a built-in credit card reader, passenger seats and overhead bins made of lighter material to reduce fuel costs, and carpeting and seat covers that need less maintenance.

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