June 19, 2024

Use the proper etiquette when flying – It’s just the right thing to do

There is etiquette in just about everything in life and flying is one of those. When you are dealing with a lot of people in a confined space you need to know and practice Airplane Etiquette.

Clean up after yourself

Flight attendants are not maids. No matter how much you paid for that seat you need to clean up after yourself. And remember if your flight was late boarding it may of have been because they had to spend extra time cleaning up after the slobs on the previous flight.


Everyone has the right to recline — there’s a polite way

The wrong way is slamming back the seat as hard and fast as you can. That has broken laptops, spilled drinks and caused fistfights that have caused flights to be diverted. Be aware of your surroundings. Before reclining, peek behind you and see what the situation is, and nicely ask if that person minds.


No one wants to hear your conversation.

Keep your conversations low and you should not be on the phone saying your goodbyes while boarding. Just focus on getting to your seat so the flight can take off on time. This also goes for music or movies that you may play while on the flight. Use your headphones.


Overhead Bins

The bins are first-come, first-serve in economy class. You don’t own the spot directly above your seat, and it’s not acceptable to take out someone else’s bag to make yours fit. Sliding bags to maximize space is fine but save the complex moving for the flight attendant. And remember, small bags belong at your feet, keeping room for large bags in the overhead bins.

The middle seat gets both armrests

It’s the consolation prize for being squished between two people with nowhere to lean. Case closed.

Headphones are a perfectly acceptable conversation ender.

If you have a chatty seatmate, you can put on your headsets and that should deter any future conversations. I don’t travel without my Bose headsets.

Calling the Attendant

Consider carefully before you push the assistance button. There are totally acceptable reasons to use it but then there are things that you should just deal with or be patient. Don’t ever poke or touch a flight attendant. Get their attention my calling “Miss”. But do not touch them. If you are having a true emergency, please hit it several times so we know it’s important.


Keep your socks on

Feel free to remove your shoes but keep your socks on. First you have the foot smell that you should not subject your fellow passengers to and second, germs!  Also, it is not acceptable to rest your feet on the armrest of the person in front. And put your shoes back on when you go to the toilet. That is NOT water on the floor!

Don’t discipline other people’s kids

If a child is being disruptive, address the parents. Don’t yell at someone else’s child. A nice way to approach this is to ask the parents calmly, and with a smile, if they realize their child is kicking your seat. Then say it’s bothersome; is there any way you can you make the child stop? This way you are not accusing in your tone, and are asking instead of being aggressive.


Seating Issues

If your family’s seating is split up, the chaotic boarding is not when flight attendants can solve it for you. The gate agents have access to the seating chart and family reservations, so please ask them first if it is possible to change your seats. Some airlines even have a policy that families with children under 13 must sit together, so the gate agent is your best resource. Or even better: call the airline before coming to the airport.

Switching Seats

You do not have to switch seats with someone who asks you. If you have paid extra for your seat, or even if it is just an inconvenience, you can kindly say no. If it is advantageous, like trading a middle seat for a window seat, or you are happy to help, please go ahead and swap.


This should be common sense, but somehow it isn’t. Flight attendants do not want to flush your deposit, and neither does the passenger after you. If you can’t find the button, please look for it: I guarantee it’s there. On every airplane.

Exiting the Plane

Go in order. Do NOT rush ahead of people in the rows in front of you. It is just rude. Wait your turn and exit in an orderly manner.  And, don’t block the passengers who are not on the aisle seat from exiting just because you want to hang back until the other passengers leave the plane.


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