British Airways passengers will no longer be able to recline their seats on short-haul flights, as the airline seeks to tackle so-called "legroom wars".
The carrier is to emulate budget airlines later this year with a fleet of 35 planes that do not have reclining seats in economy class.
Passengers travelling as far as North Africa may have to sit upright for the duration of their journey, as it is understood the new planes will be used for flights of up to four hours.
The change could see an end to "legroom wars" in which rows can be sparked by an inconsiderate lurch backwards from the passenger in front.
These legroom wars have also played out locally, with media reporting regularly on disgruntled customers calling for an end to reclining seats.
Despite the passenger frustration, local carrier Air New Zealand has decided to stick with reclining seats.
However, with British Airways now following the lead of budget airlines it raises the question of whether other major national carriers might also follow suit.
The seats on BA's new fleet will be set at an angle described by the airline as a "gentle recline", so it will not be possible to encroach upon the legroom of the passenger behind.
But the change could spark protests among passengers who have already complained BA is too closely emulating budget competitors, especially since the appointment in 2015 of chief executive Alex Cruz who formerly ran Spain's low-cost carrier Vueling.
BA will fit the non-reclining seats on its new fleet of 35 Airbus A320neos and A321neos, which are scheduled to come into service later this year.
A BA spokesman confirmed: "As well as new long-haul aircraft, we have 35 brand new short-haul planes arriving over the next five years.
"We are installing at-seat power throughout the aircraft and will soon offer onboard WiFi.
"The new aircraft will have brand new seats set to a gentle recline to ensure everyone in the cabin enjoys a comfortable journey.
"These changes will also allow us to offer more low fares to customers."
Last January, BA stopped providing free food and drink in economy class on short-haul flights.
Passengers must instead purchase meals from flight attendants, as was already the case on easyJet or Ryanair flights.
The airline is also said to be "reviewing" its policy of selling duty-free items such as perfumes on board short flights.
Mr Cruz also faced criticism last year for poor communication with customers when an IT disaster grounded planes and caused disruption to more than 75,000 passengers over the May Bank Holiday weekend.
- The Telegraph