Airline Etiquette – My Opinion

After flying frequently with low-cost carriers (LCC) or budget airlines for more than five years now, I encountered so many things that made my travel not a restful one. So, I made the list below, of things we have to consider and be mindful of, when we ride the plane. The list are all my opinion, based on my observations and my experiences. There is no intention to insult or hurt other people whatsoever, but to remind of proper etiquette while riding the plane. 

1.  Standing Up While the Seat Belt Sign is ON

Seat belt sign is ON!

I have to list this first before I totally forgot or before I decide to exclude this. Standing up or opening the overhead bins, just as the plane stops after landing, when the flight attendants (FA) still have safety procedures to do, while the seat belt sign is on, is unsafe. Really, the seat belt sign is there for a reason. The plane can still move and then you will hold the airline responsible when you are hurt inside? It is more embarrassing when the FA calls you our and tell you to sit down!

2. Be in your assigned seat

Always follow your seat number.


This has happened to me maybe 50% of the flights I have been in this year. When I arrive at my seat, someone is already seated there and so I tell the FA and they arrogantly tell the FA that they should be seated there to be with their companions and then the FA apologetically requests me to transfer to their original seats.

First, asked me politely and asked me before you occupy my seat. Second, when checking in, you can politely ask the airline crew if they can seat you all together. I always do this when me and my companions have different booking references but you have to check in together at the same time. Third, pay for a seat if you really want it!

3. Banging and kicking the seat in front of you

Be cautious in moving this part.

Really, unless you really have long legs, be cautious and be careful in opening the passenger tray table or putting stuff at the seat pocket in front, as not to disturb the person sitting in front of you. I have experience today, in this flight, the teenager at the back of my seat, keeps kicking my seat! It is so disturbing.

4. Flush the toilet!

There is a flush button!

The plane toilet has flush. Do not be shy to push it. Also, please do not wash your feet in the lavatory, I have encountered this several times. If you really have to, have the decency to wipe everything dry.

5. Keep your voice down (and your gadgets too!)

Especially if it is a night flight. Not all of us are interested in your life or how you were heartbroken because your boyfriend hooked up with your friend! And also, it is rude to turn on the speaker of your devices. The headset/headphone is there for a reason. 

6. Not all seatmates are friendly

Some of us came from a very long travel prior or are really tired and just want to catch on some zzzz’s on the flight. If we close our eyes or put on a headset, understand that we might not want to chat.

7. Practice good hygiene

At least put on some deodorant or use only mild scents (no strong perfume please). We will be in an enclosed room for a few hours and we do not want to be suffocated by the strong smell. And also, cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze, and pop in some breath mints, for sure you can smell your foul breath?

8. Do not be arrogant

Riding the plane does not made you rich. And being in an LCC, can mean that you should not expect special treatment. Do not think of the FAs as your slaves, asking them for small things which you can do yourself. And do not raise your voice and announce to everyone that you are an employee of a certain company and you deserve special treatment. Seriously?

9. Crying kids 

One time I was seated in an aisle seat with infants at my left and right side, and at my front. I was so concerned that they would cry at the same time. Fortunately, they didn’t. We can not really blame kids for being kids, so we just have to accept it and deal with it on our own. Noise cancelling headphones is a great help. 

10. Authority in the sky

When inside the plane, we have to remember that the pilots and the FAs are the authority. Submit and respect. All are for our safety. 

Being familiar with the list above, will make you and your fellow passengers have a peaceful and restful flight. But if you do not like it, to each his own! But always remember: be polite, be kind and empathize. Always think, if it was done to you what would you feel? I repeat, these are all my opinion, based on my actual experiences.

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