Miss Manners: Airplane Etiquette

I’m going to preface this with a disclaimer.  My version of airplane etiquette is a bit skewed since I require massive amounts of drugs to fly.  All I do is  make sure to take enough to avoid the projectile vomiting (yeah, I’m dead serious), but not too much so I end up drooling on my neighbor.  It’s a good flight if I’m unconscious the entire time.

For those of you who spend their flights on iPods, reading, or trying desperately to occupy themselves while stuck in a metal tube for a few hours with a hundred strangers, there are a some rules you should observe. So, sit back, relax, and listen up. Here comes the airplane etiquette:

Chatting With Your Neighbor:
If you happen to be a very social person, remember that your neighbor is not required to talk to you.  Just because someone happens to be sitting next to you (and your thighs may be touching) doesn’t mean that you two need to share your life stories and become BFFs.  And if this is something they don’t quite seem to understand, it is perfectly acceptable to tell them (politely) that you are too busy/sick/tired or whatever to talk. Or just put your earphone in (with or without the music playing) so they get the hint.

Arm Rest Possession:
I am pretty sure there is nothing more uncomfortable than sharing a 3-inch armrest with a large, hairy man. Wait, I take that back. Wrestling a large, hairy man for the armrest might take the cake. Common courtesy on arm rest possession is as follows: If you are on the aisle, take the outer-most armrest. If you are in the window, take the outer-most armrest. Let the poor sucker in the middle have both of the inside guys. After all, poor guy has the worst seat on the plane, let him have something.

Using the potty:
Restrooms on airplanes always have a line. If you are waiting in it, do not loiter in front of someone else’s seat so they have to lean over to avoid you. Also,  remember that the restroom is not a changing room or a place to perfect your make up before landing.  Get in, quickly do your stuff, get out (otherwise everyone on the plane will think you were doin a #2 and that’s just embarrassing).  Make it fast – there will be bathrooms in the airport for all the other stuff.  Also, on your way to the bathroom, it is acceptable to very gently wake your neighbor if you don’t have an aisle seat.  Nobody wants to wake up with your ass in their face while you’re climbing over them (especially not Eminem).  Since you have about two centimeters of room to work with, you have to work together.

General Respect:
The key to being a good passenger is respect.  Respect the other passengers by not invading their space, annoying the hell out of them (kicking their seat, opening and closing your tray, getting up every 20 minutes), or disrupting their flight experience.  Respect the flight attendants by following their instructions (if they haven’t said you can put your seat back yet, then don’t!) and staying out of their way when they’re serving food and drinks.  Respect yourself by not getting wasted on the flight (alcohol is much more potent at high altitudes) and arriving looking like a hot mess.

Oh and, just from personal experience, if you plan on watching a movie, screen that shiz before you turn it on. Full frontal + kid sitting behind you = really awkward situation… and some pissed off parentals.

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