Are These the 30 Worst Decisions You Can Make on a Plane?

When traveling on a plane, one must remember that the decisions you make can impact everyone else around you (my seatmate last week who picked up Taco Bell and then could not properly digest his food – did not do this). Aligned with this collective thinking, Yahoo Travel has shared their 30 Worst Decisions You Can Make on a Planefind 5 of my favorites below and check out the full list here.  As always, thanks to Mark for sharing.

Bring a carryon that you cannot personally lift into the overhead bin: There is no amount of charm that makes this the right thing to do. Unless someone in your party can lift your carryon overhead, check it.

Put your coat in the overhead bin before everyone has boarded: Let’s be clear. You are certainly entitled to bring your coat along with you as you return to Minnesota from your cruise to the Bahamas. You are not entitled to take up valuable bin space with it until everyone with an actual piece of luggage has boarded the flight.

Bring anything on board with garlic, onions, or fish: Taking stinky food on a plane is unconscionable. Not only will your seatmates be stuck smelling it while you eat, there are aftereffects to be considered.

Have a hygiene failure: Flight time is the wrong time to try a new antiperspirant, rush to the airport without a shower, or skimp on laundry. The stinkiest travelers are usually the ones coming home from long tropical vacations. All the clothes they took with them are now soaked in sweat, rum, and sunscreen. The plane soon smells like coconut-scented sneaker inserts. Do us all a favor and at least and wear a fresh souvenir T-shirt home on the plane. Go against us and we may hashtag you #PassengerShaming.

Think you have any rights at 30,000 feet: Your goal is to get from point A to point B. The crew’s job is to get you there safely. Sit down. Shut up. And let them do their jobs. Your rights basically end at wheels up.


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  1. “Your rights basically end at wheels up.”

    Absolutely, unequivocally disagree. I am a CUSTOMER, not just a piece of freight (as I’ve said on other blogs’ comments, if I was an airline executive and ever heard use an employee use the phrase “self-loading cargo”, that employee would get sacked on the spot.) I have the right (call it a reasonable expectation, if the word “right” seems too much) to be treated courteously and to be provided with the services and amenities that go with my service class (subject, of course, to limitations due to problems outside the airline’s control), and if these minimal conditions aren’t meant, it is certainly my prerogative to (politely, of course) expect the the airline’s employees to listen to and address, as far as circumstances allow, the issues.

    My goal is not just to get “from point A to point B”, it’s to enjoy traveling as much as is reasonably possible. And I am so very, very tired of people making excuses for horrible airline service by throwing the word “safety” in there, as if that magic word excuses anything and everything. If you went to a restaurant and your food didn’t meet reasonable expectations, would you accept the response of “hey, you ate safely, we didn’t give you food poisoning, so “sit down and shut up”? No. So why should an airline treat its customers that way?

    This attitude of contempt toward customers that too many (not all, not even a majority, but still far too many) airline employees have is the biggest factor in why flying has become so unpleasant so much of the time. And yes, there are a lot of passengers with bad attitudes too, but, if nothing else, two wrongs does not a right make.

    But this attitude of “take what you get and be thankful it’s not worse” is awful. Respect and courtesy are a two-way street, and it’s the service provider’s job to set the standard – after all, the customers are the ones paying the bill. No customers, no airlines. It really is that simple.

    Frankly, this article you’re quoting from appears to have been written by some obnoxious twit with an incredible sense of self-entitlement and a total lack of empathy. (Let those handicapped folks and senior citizens lift their own damn bags!) Sounds like a business traveler with just enough miles on the road to get really, really bitter but not enough to get enough status to bag upgrades.


    • @CraigTPA

      Calm down. The article was using comic relief in those statements. The author obviously thinks there are certain expectations and that you should somewhat enjoy your flight, they didn’t really mean sit down and shut up. I guess sarcasm is missed by some.

  2. I agree with Kirk. I might say hyperbole more than “humor” to get the point across.

    In the real world, which is the more widespread issue – misbehaving. passengers or abusive attendants? I say the former. And unlike flight attendants (who you can get “in trouble”) there is virtually no accountability for bad “customers” unless they violate the law. And by that I mean REALLY violate the law because flight attendants look the other way constantly as violations are made every day.

    Rude attendants ARE an issue, and if this article were titled “30 issues FLIGHT ATTENDANTS need to improve” that would be a good outlet for the “other side” of this issue. But it was, by definition, about passengers so why would the author write about flight attendants?

    All that said, “stinky guy” who gets on the plane after not bathing is the worst. I nearly gagged when one passenger walked by me. No “judgement”, pure reflex. Airlines should be allowed to deny boarding for people who have neglected their hygiene to the point that it would cause significant physical discomfort to entire rows of customers.

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