Friday, January 6, 2012

Airplane Etiquette Update

Having just returned from visiting the family but unable to publicly write about it because they’re a litigious bunch I thought I’d revisit my love of airplane travel. Except…this time I’m not going to bitch. Crazy, right? Call it my gift to you.

I haven’t been in an airport or on a plane since May and I am pleased to say things have improved substantially. I’d like to believe it’s because the airlines care so much about their customers but I know the reality is colder. As in cold hard cash. Here’s what I’m happy about.

In years past a lot of lip service was paid to “one purse or briefcase and one carry-on bag” per passenger but I would still be standing behind the douche lord with a duffel, a guitar case, and a backpack large enough for a stint on Everest. Or the kindly grandmother with her tote of knitting supplies, industrial sized handbag to hold meds and pictures of the grandkids, and a shopping bag full of souvenirs. The shopping bag tears. You know this. This trip I watched as these folks and several other stereotypes were stopped at the gate and relieved of their excess baggage AND charged for the fact that had to be checked in. Love it!

Things just got better when we got onboard and grumpy old man in row 11 put his carry-on bag in the overhead bin for row 7 (my row). This is fairly standard behavior on a plane because apparently carrying your luggage an extra 4 rows is fate no passenger should suffer. This time a flight attendant approached and asked if he was sitting in row 7 and when told no, explained that he’d have to move his bag. He was peeved enough that he loudly regaled his seatmates with this injustice for the first ten minutes of the flight but I’m pretty sure it was better than having me heave the bag at his head. Which I have been known to do.

So, kudos to the airlines for bringing the criminal passenger element under control. Now if you would just implement the plexiglass sealed family seating area so that moms and dads can simmer in the Petri dish of bacteria produced by their spawn all while enjoying their dolphin-pitched shrieking and getting a free acupressure massage on their back from the rugrat behind them who kicks their seatback for two hours straight, I’d fly everywhere. Think about it.


Amy said...

There used to be smoking/non-smoking sections. Why can't there be baby/non-baby sections? And not just on planes--everywhere.

Catherine said...

Amy, you're a woman after my own heart. More power to the people who have them but I'm old and selfish and don't want to be inconvenienced- ever.

Abby said...

Why are animals relegated to the cargo area but children are allowed to stay up front? Just a thought.

Anyway, the end of this month starts my travel season for work, which means delightful airline interactions. You know I hate travel, but hopefully your theory that things are looking up will stand for my trips as well. If not, I might end up on the news as someone freaking out over the dude who tries to carry on his surfboard.

Catherine said...

So true, Abby. I've never wanted to club someone's pet on a plane but I can't say the same for their child.
I've already started saying novenas for your trip.

Suniverse said...

I haven't flown in forever. FOREVER. But I'm glad to hear that douchebags are getting their comeuppance. I hate assholes and the more the suffer, the happier I am.

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