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A Holiday Proposal for Plane Travel Etiquette

Business travelers, unite! An open letter to all holiday leisure travelers.

Here we are almost to November with fall leaves fading, kids well ensconced in school and football season in full swing. Suddenly, catalogers are packing my mailbox with Christmas promotions, and retailers are already swapping turkeys for pumpkins and ghouls. While the average American is either gleefully or unenthusiastically preparing for the upcoming holidays, only business travelers truly understand the most trying element of the holiday festivities — the holiday leisure traveler!

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As we start to head towards each holiday travel season, I considering lobbying for a mandatory air travel training course for leisure travelers which include these rules:

Boarding the airplane rear-to-front, as instructed by most airlines, lets everyone leave sooner.

Don’t block the aisle when boarding; if possible, pull into your seat row while taking off your jacket and stowing your baggage in an overhead compartment.

Don’t place your suitcase on another passenger’s suit coat in the overhead compartment.

Stow your carry on above your seat or in a compartment in front of you, if possible. If you have to put your carry on in a compartment in an aisle behind, don’t swim upstream when deplaning; wait until everyone has left the plane and then retrieve your bag.

Turn off your computer, cell phone, and wireless PDA when instructed.

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Don’t pull or lean on another passengers seat back.

Don’t stick your feet out into the aisle.

When the plane lands, don’t immediately stand up and hover over your seatmate; wait until you see passengers actually departing before getting out of your seat.

Before you get to the security checkpoint, remove all jewelry and metal items from your person and place them in your carry-on bag or in one convenient location on your person. (This includes any body-piercings.) Nothing is more irritating than standing behind someone who is pulling PDAs, keys, change, glasses, and so on out of his coat like rabbits out of a hat.

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