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|12 Things that you can do to annoy other passengers
|Thud, thud, thud. “Excuse me, would you mind stopping that?”
THUD. THUD. THUD. If this sounds at all familiar then chances are you are among the
97.9% of travellers who loathe seatback kickers in the row behind. The figure comes from a
poll by the travel website Travelocity, whose readers despised this favourite pastime of
bored children more than any other travel irritant.
|Ignoring your kids’ bad behaviour
|Most Britons want child-free zones on planes
On a similar theme, the travel community TripAdvisor conducted a survey on family
travel in April. It revealed that 79% of Britons believed there should be child-free
zones on planes (interestingly, that figure includes 71% of parents).
But it seems the children themselves are not the main target of travellers’ irritation:
rather, it is their oblivious parents for not controlling them better. "The people
travelling with kids and the people travelling without them tend to be equally vocal
about how annoying the other group is," said Michele Perry, vice-president of global
communications for TripAdvisor.
|Overly friendly neighbours: much disliked on planes
Some people read, some sleep and some wile away the long hours in the air by
getting to know the people in the neighbouring seats. But while recounting your life
story to complete strangers may seem like a friendly thing to do, beware the
strained smile and glazed eyes.
In another TripAdvisor survey, of the most annoying behaviour among air
passengers, travellers who yabber nonstop – despite you sending clear signals
you want to be left alone – made a surprise appearance at No 3 in the list.
|Shower before you get onboard
Perhaps airlines should hand out smelling salts and air
fresheners on long haul flights. It seems there is much call for
them. Fellow passengers with bad breath and BO have been
voted the very worst people to sit next to on a flight in a recent
poll. Almost one-fifth of respondents found such malodorous
Accorindg to Barry Smith, “Take a shower and pack breath mints
before boarding a flight if you want to stay on the good side of
your fellow passengers. For any budding entrepreneurs, there is
obviously a big market here for some form of nose plug.”
|Cabin attendants are the most common victims of air rage
We get it. You’re sleep-deprived, uncomfortable and irritated that there
are only fish meals left. But really – must you take it out on the cabin
crew? Civil Aviation Authority figures show that incidents of air range
have trebled over the past five years, with cabin attendants the most
common victims. And a recent survey of British flyers found that 75%
believed air passengers had become much ruder in general over the
past few years – especially to airline staff.
|Eating smelly food or eating noisily
|Bacon sandwiches: best not taken on a plane
(Image © John Giles/PA)
Eating pungent or crunchy food is another habit that gets your fellow travellers hot
under the collar, according to TripAdvisor’s survey of annoying travel behaviour.
Whiffy cheese-and-onion crisps, rustling sweets and egg and bacon sandwiches
are all common offenders – but if it can be smelt or heard from a seat away,
chances are you’re offending somebody.
|Taking your shoes off: save it for the great outdoors
Another olfactory offender: you have just settled on to the flight and are starting
to think about your stomach, hoping to catch a whiff of approaching food, when
another more unsavoury smell assails your nostrils – sweaty feet in the row
behind. Bang! There goes your appetite, and with it any chance of a pleasant
Wantonly shoeless people were another candidate for the stocks in Skyscanner’
s poll of the people you would least like to sit next to on an aeroplane. A
spokesman for the company, Sam Baldwin, said: “While it may be more
comfortable for you to remove your shoes, make sure you’ve got your odour
eaters on if you want to stay on the right side of your fellow travellers.”
|Beware fellow passengers bearing too much duty free alcohol
(Image © Matthew Fearn/PA)
Partaking of a sip of wine with your meal is one thing. Downing your duty free
and giving a rousing rendition of the national anthem is another. Drunken
travellers also stumbled close to the top of the list in the Skyscanner poll of
irritating fellow passengers.
The company's spokesman Sam Baldwin says: “Loud drunkards are especially
annoying; your heart sinks when you realise you’re going to be stuck behind a
rowdy stag or hen party for the whole flight. Unless you’re part of the party
yourself, of course!”
|Armrest space is at a premium in economy
You know what to expect from economy class: small seats,
limited legroom and minimal personal space. But any further
encroachment on to our own little patch of airspace is enough
to make the best of us fume.
For such an apparently low-level offence, armrest hoggers
were a perhaps surprising inclusion among the most despised
categories in the Skyscanner survey. Sam Baldwin told us:
“There’s always going to be conflict over that middle armrest.
Maybe airlines need to introduce some sort of armrest
|Knees are endangered species in economy seats .
One of the few recourses left to comfort in a cattle-class seat is to
recline your chair and take a snooze. But even this can trigger acute
bouts of air rage from your fellow passengers, it seems.
The Tripadvisor poll listed reclining your seat without asking as one of
the 10 most annoying travel habits. As airlines cut down on already
meagre legroom in a bid to fit ever more seats on to their planes, it’s
hardly surprising that passengers fear for their kneecaps. There is
even a controversial little gadget called a Knee Defender on the
market, which prevents the seat in front from reclining.
|Overhead luggage compartments are another battleground for
Stocking up on duty free goodies is one of the few distractions during long waits in the
airport. But precious overhead luggage space is another battle ground for passengers,
according to the TripAdvisor study. Stowing too much baggage or too slowly both infuriated
the poll’s respondents, and taking luggage down just as soon as the plane has landed was
another common bugbear.
|And the rest ...
|Sneezing is yet another source on inflight annoyance
So far we have only scratched the surface of all the habits that irk our
fellow travellers. The surveys all highlighted a multitude of other offenders:
the snorers, the dribblers, the floppers and the sneezers among them.
Then there are the people getting up before the seatbelt sign is turned
off, and those that read over their neighbours’ shoulders.
In fact, there are so many ways in which we can fall foul of our fellow flyers
it seems none of us can claim innocence. So what hope is there of a
pleasant flight in economy?
TripAdvisor’s poll had 61% of respondents simply recommending that you
do unto other travellers as you would have them do to you. "We're all in
this together," said Michele Perry, spokeswoman for TripAdvisor.
|"By minding our manners and adhering to basic travel etiquette – much of which is really just common sense,
we can make holiday travel a little easier for everyone."
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|Don't let turbulence freak you out
By Brett Snyder, Special to CNN
|Mile-high madness with Richard Simmons!