You won’t find rows 4, 13, 14 and 17 on some planes – here’s why


FINDING your seat on a plane can be quite difficult if you’re not someone who flies regularly.

However, there are some seats you will never have to look for when preparing for a flight, because they simply don’t exist.


Rows 13 and 17 don’t exist on some Lufthansa planes because of superstitionsCredit: Alamy

Plenty of airlines remove certain rows from their aircraft, and it’s mainly down to old superstitions.

Rows four, seven, 13 and 21 don’t feature in some aircraft because of cultural associations to different numbers.

In fact, Ryanair, Air France, Singapore Airlines, Cathay Pacific, Qatar Airlines, Emirates, KLM, Iberia and Lufthansa all skip row 13 on some of their planes, according to Euronews.

This is to do with triskaidekaphobia, or the fear of the number 13.

The cultural fear of the number dates back to the 1700s when the “13 at a table” superstition was first documented.

That superstition states that if 13 people are sat at a table, one of those must die that year. The origin of the superstition is not clear, however.

Nevertheless, it has stuck around and people still view the number with fear or suspicion to this day, meaning airlines leave it out of their plane, to put their passengers at ease.

Lufthansa also leave out row 17 on their planes too.

This is because the number 17 is also unlucky for some people because when viewed as the roman numeral XVII, its anagram VIXI roughly means “my life is over” in Latin.

In a tweet published in 2017, the German airline said: “Rows 13 and 17 are missing because these are considered unlucky numbers #bettersafethansorry,”

The airline explained in further detail on their website: “In some cultures, the number 13 is considered unlucky.

“That is why there is no row 13 in planes, because we respect the superstition. That way nobody who thinks that the number 13 is unlucky has to sit in that row.

“In some countries, for example Italy and Brazil, the typical unlucky number is 17 and not 13.

“Seeing as Lufthansa welcomes a lot of international passengers, we try to consider as many of these specific cultural beliefs as possible.”

Chinese airlines leave out row number four on their planes, because the Chinese word for four is similar to their word for death, which is pronounced with a different tone.

For this reason, buildings in China often go straight from the third floor to the fifth, without a fourth floor between them.

Number 14 is also emitted from some Chinese airlines for similar reasons.

In Mandarin the word for fourteen is similar to how you would say “is dead”.

It’s not just the airlines that avoid the number 13 – some hotels and cruise liners don’t have a deck or floor 13 either.

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Meanwhile, this is why you’re more likely to survive a plane accident if you’re British.

And these are the top 10 myths about flying that have been debunked.

Other airlines don't have rows four or 14 either because of how the words sound in Chinese


Other airlines don’t have rows four or 14 either because of how the words sound in ChineseCredit: Alamy



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