10 Things You Should Never Do On A Plane
Despite something called common courtesy and it’s counterpart “the golden rule,” all bets seem to be off and human-kind reverts to a neanderthal state when they enter the aluminum tube. There are some behaviors of which you, as a human being, should never be guilty. These behaviours are vile, disgusting, putrid, unkind, rude, and downright deplorable. If you have ever been guilty of any of them, commit now to change your ways. Here’s a list of the top 10 things you should never do on a plane.
#1 – Break Wind
Do NOT, under any circumstances, pass gas whilst in the cabin of the plane. This isn’t your office where 2-3 of your co-workers will be affected by your stench. You have 150-300 other passengers breathing the same re-circulated air as is now occupied by your gaseous cloud. If you are feeling like Veruca Salt and think you will explode, excuse yourself to the lavatory furthest away from me and break wind there.
#2 – Look Like You Just Rolled Out of Bed
I have a feeling I may get some flack for this one, but hear me out. You are in public. You had to pass through the public domain from your house to get to the airport, stand in line with strangers at security, and at every point up until boarding. There is no excuse to come dressed as if you are a 13yr old attending their first sleepover. PJs, slippers, night gowns, lingere, boxer shorts and the like should not be part of your wardrobe choice. Feel free to dress comfortably, ESPECIALLY on those long-haul flights or if you have an unusually long travel day ahead of you. But have some self-respect and actually get dressed.
#3 – Keep Saying “What” When Asked for Your Drink Order
It’s 2015, drink options on flights really haven’t changed in 10 years. In fact, the way the Flight Attendants serve you hasn’t changed much either. See that tall skinny cart coming down the aisle? Inside are these things called cans and bottles that contain magical hydrating liquids to combat the ever-so-dry (and FART FREE) cabin air. Instead of playing games on your phone, why don’t you take the 8-10min before we reach that special place called 10,000ft and review your options. That way, when the magical cart comes around you can order swiftly. And above all, REMOVE your earbuds when the FAs are talking to you. Don’t keep shouting “WHAT” above your music/game/audiobook/white noise session.
#4 – Interview Your Plane Mates
Have you ever gone somewhere and found that one person that simply will not shut up? Yeah, don’t be them. We are on the plane because we share a common leg as part of our respective journeys. That is it! A bit of good conversation is always welcome during boarding, takeoff and landing. But if your passenger friend stops responding and reaches for their earbuds, that’s your social cue to put a cork in it. Interviewing your comrade like it was the Spanish inquisition makes an already bovine-like experience even more like manure.
#5 – Fly When Sick
For the same reasons as listed in #1 above, DO NOT FLY IF YOU ARE SICK! Sharing is caring, unless you are sharing some bed-confining, mucus-producing, vomit-inducing plague. If you must fly, kindly book a seat far away from me, and wear a mask. In fact, you should probably bring some anti-bacterial wipes to neutralize your presence when you leave the plane.
#6 – Walk Around In Your Socks/Bare Feet
I use the same disclaimer as in #2, it is important to be comfortable. This traveller fully supports kicking off your shoes to give your feet some fresh air. I do the same thing, but usually reserve such an action for when I am traveling long distance and will be in the air for over three to four hours. That said, don’t walk around the plane in your stocking feet. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve watched people walk into the bathroom with just their socks on. You do realize that people miss the hole, right? You’ve just walked into a nasty, germ boot camp, and are now tracking all of that back to your seat. Pretty soon you’ll put those pee and feces germ covered feet back into your dark and damp shoes. You get where I’m going with this.
Likewise and under no circumstances should you ever place your feet on the armrest or on the top of another seat. I flew to Europe back in 2010 and decided to have a nice nap between Philadelphia and Venice. When I woke up, there were feet on the other side of the guy in the center seat. Needless to say when HE woke up, there was a rather heated, and very brief conversation between the two men.
Kick ’em off if you’re sitting, but if you must walk around, lace ’em up.
#7 – Recline Your Seat
Okay, fine you can recline your seat, but please be courteous when doing so. Your sudden jerk backwards quickly decreases the amount of space available for my knees, and often my laptop. Two objects can’t occupy the same space at the same time. Obviously there are certain flights (red-eyes, trans-oceanic, late night) where you may recline with reckless abandon. I’d be stupid to assume you’ve amped up on energy drinks for the duration of the flight, nor do I have the budget to supply you with them. If it’s a 1pm flight, and we’re only in the air for 90min, rethink your decision, or recline ever so slightly.
#8 – Argue With/Fight/Blame the Crew
You’ve heard the term “Don’t bite the hand that feeds you?” Well, don’t piss off the crew that serves you. Your flight crew is tasked with multiple responsibilities, chief of which is the safety of the passengers on their flight. Serving you little snacks and keeping you hydrated are further down that list. So what if they took an extra five minutes to bring you your 15th glass of water. You’re an adult, bring a bottle! So what if the #1 reminded you for the umpteenth time to get off your cell phone, put it away! The rest of us don’t want to hear your conversation, and quite frankly I don’t feel like a ground delay or a flight-redirect because we had to take your sorry, childish butt back to the gate. Maybe you’ll be lucky and have the undercover air marshall as your best friend for the next few hours.
#9 – Use the Aisle as an Extension of Your Personal Space
Yes, airline seats have gotten smaller and smaller. Blah blah blah. That is no excuse to make the aisle an extension of your own personal space. As someone sitting in the aisle, you have undertaken a sacred oath to keep it clear and set an example for your fellow travelers. Keep your legs, feet, arms, head, bag, baby, laptop and anything else you may deem valuable out of the aisle. It is considered common area, reserved for everyone. I can guarantee that getting hit by the drink cart will make you have second thoughts.
#10 – Drink So Much Liquid You Must Pee Every 30min
Hydration on the plane? Good! Excessive hydration on the plane? Bad! If you must drink like a camel, be kind to those around you and book the aisle seat, making sure to observe #9 above! Don’t be that person over on the window, or the person in the middle on a wide-body jet, who is leaping up from their seat every 30min because you keep downing half a gallon of water an hour. If this were the 1800s wagon ride, and we hadn’t seen water in days. By all means, throw that stuff back. But considering we were just on the ground an hour ago, dial it back a bit. There is a reason that the Flight Attendants don’t serve you a 1L bottle of your beverage of choice.