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Four "no-kids zone" airlines putting business travellers first

It's a business traveller nightmare: you've managed to snag a prized extra-legroom bulkhead seat, but you make your way down the aisle to find a red-faced, screaming baby in the bassinet crib a metre away from your head.

Or you haven't managed to pick one of the best seats on your flight, and instead you're relegated to the back row of business — and the wailing from a row of four babies right on the other side of the bulkhead wall begins before you even sit down.

But there are four airlines flying from Australia focusing on the needs of business travellers, and arguably putting them ahead of babies: Malaysia Airlines, Thai Airways, AirAsia X and Scoot.

MAS: no babies in first class or upstairs A380 economy

But it's not just for whoever can drop the most cash — the upstairs section in economy on MAS' A380s is also a refuge from the little screamers, with kids only seated upstairs as a last resort.

The priority for "families with infants and/or children in economy class is to accommodate them in main deck of 350 seats" a Malaysia Airlines spokesperson confirmed to Australian Business Traveller when the airline defended its controversial baby ban. "If main deck is full, then they are allowed at upper deck of 70 seats."

Thai: adults-only A380 upper deck economy

Without the bassinet crib mountings on the bulkhead wall at the front of the upper deck economy cabin, this is the place to pick if you want to skip the screaming.

Scoot: bulkheads are for business travellers, not babies

Another airline that's kiboshed the cribs is Scoot — bassinets aren't carried aboard Singapore Airlines' low-cost sibling. The bulkhead row behind business class on its Boeing 777-200 jets dedicated to Stretch extra-legroom seating, which taller passengers can snag for just a premium on top of the regular fare.

No bassinets for this wall either — or anywhere on the plane, Scoot confirmed to us. The airline doesn't carry them. That's an added reason for price-savvy business travellers to pick the ScootBiz cabin on the other side of the bulkhead.

AirAsia X: quiet up front with new kid-free zone

It's also kid-free in the forward section of economy on AirAsia X's Airbus A330 flights, which connect Australians through Kuala Lumpur to China, Taiwan, Japan, Korea and Nepal.

There's a new Quiet Zone in the first seven rows of economy, right behind the airline's angled lie-flat Premium FlatBed business class seating.

No kids under 12 are allowed in the quiet zone, while the over-12s can buy their way in for pocket money prices: $11-35, depending on route.

The bassinets from those rows will be distributed around the rest of economy, where the kiddos can cavort to their hearts' content out of earshot.

What do you reckon airlines should do to meet business travellers' need to get some sleep, while taking into account the undeniable reality of babies on board? Share your thoughts in a comment below, or join the conversation on Twitter: we're @AusBT.

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