I was flying to Florida for business a few months ago. Since I was going to a business meeting, I was in a business casual suit. I made sure that I wore dress flats so my feet wouldn’t kill me walking long distances in the airports. This is how my parents taught me to dress when I fly. And most people do dress appropriate in public while flying, but it’s amazing the things you see before, during and after a flight! I am sure the people reading this are thinking the same thing.
If you travel frequently, you may have asked yourself this at one time or another: Is there airport and airplane etiquette? Yes, there is!!! Remember the day when flying was something special? Boarding a plane in pajama pants, T-Shirt, flip-flops – unthinkable!!!!
Yes, with every decade, America becomes more and more casual. Restaurants that used to require sports jackets, now will allow you to enter in denim – and I don’t mean dress denim. I have even seen T-Shirts in some of these establishments. Even understanding that we must move along with the times, and times are changing, I would have never thought I would have witnessed what I did a few months back.
I arrived early, as many of us do, so not to miss my flight when I saw it: A pair of hot pants in the airport. Oh, no – these were homemade hot pants. You say, what does she mean by homemade? They were old sweat pants that had been cut off barely below the buttocks. This was someone who shouldn’t have been wearing hot pants in any situation. To match her homemade hot pants was a low, low, low-cut top. Now, to make matters worse, she sat down right in front of me, took her flip flops off so she could get a little more comfortable. Oh, you think I’m done, don’t you?! She was talking loudly on her cell phone most of the time. I tried not to look but, again, she was sitting not more than six feet right across from me. Finally, after about 15 minutes, she told the person on the other end of the phone, goodbye.
Now, comes the scary part. Did you know that there is a new cell phone holder? Oh, yes, there is! It’s called a cleavage holder. She had one. She put her cell phone right in her cleavage, and there it stayed even while standing in her zone line to enter the plane.
I really thought hard before I wrote this story. But then I thought that this type of scenery at various airports is happening far too often. Where does it end? If you’re going to Disney, do you simply put on your flip flops, swimsuit and cover-up in order to save time? When is it considered visually offensive?
Here are a few Airport and Airplane Etiquette Tips:
- Attire: Dress with respect to others. Not everyone wants to be visually offended.
- Cell Phones: If you need to take a phone call in the airport or on the plane before takeoff, please make it brief, or move to an area so you are not distracting to others. Remember, other people may not want to know your latest business deal that just came through, or about the hot date you had last night. Talking on cell phones in a public place IS NOT private.
- Be patient: Wait until your zone is called. There is no reason for you to hurry up and wait your turn. They will call your zone. Then get in line. This keeps traffic moving at a comfortable pace.
- Where’s The Fire: When you get on the plane, again, take your time. I have seen people knocked in the head because someone was rushing to shove their carryon in the overhead compartment. And the same goes when exiting the plane. Pushing and shoving will not get you off the plane any faster.
- Seat Kicking: Please don’t kick the seat in front of you.
- Walking in the aisles: Be observant of others while walking in the aisle. Try not to walk into people seated in the aisle seat, and they should try to keep their feet out of the aisle as well.
- Reclining Your Seat: When reclining your seat, remember that there is someone directly behind you, and they might have their tray table down. Recline your chair slowly.
- Help Others: If there are friends or family members that have been separated, and you are traveling alone, help them out. It just might be you the next time. Offer your seat if it puts them together.
- Lend a Hand: If you see someone is having trouble putting their carryon in the overhead compartment, lend a hand.
- Drinking: Remember, alcohol is intensified when you are at high altitudes. Don’t over drink.
I know there are many more areas that bother people when they fly. I would love to hear what upsets you the most when you are in the airport or while flying.
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