What irritates you about other passengers?

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  • Anonymous

    A recent survey by London City airport has revealed the top ten irritating passenger habits.


    Do you agree with the findings? What irritates you about your fellow passengers?

    Tom Otley

    I’d agree with a lot of it.

    I don’t like it on an evening flight back from Europe the passenger next to me removes his shoes and then stinks the flight with his smelly socks, but then again on a long haul flight I once saw a passenger take his socks off and drape them over the arm rest to dry out during the flight.


    While traveling out of Mumbai, guy takes off shoes and……I gave him the look and eventually his feet and shoes were united again 😀 Another annoying thing is body odour…especially on a long-haul.

    The most annoying for me is when someone keeps kicking the back of my seat…almost forgot also when someone uses the back of my seat as a lever when they get up (I’m not just referring to economy class!).

    Tom Otley

    BA Club World – when the person behind you slams the foot stool up and then let’s it drop again and it’s your head on the other side of the partition trying to sleep.


    What annoys me most about fellow passengers?. The fact that they are fellow passengers. Their presence is an economic necessity for the airline, yet a mere hindrance to the rest of us.

    I once had the entire upper deck of a RAM 747 to myself for a short jaunt from RAK to ORY. It was a broken seat downstairs that led to me being sent upstairs (alone, with a single crew member to look after me).

    It was the best flight I have ever taken.


    Brilliant article and I agree with all the sentiments.

    My big bug bear is passengers bringing on excess handbaggage and the cabin crew asking you to put your one small item under the seat in front of you to make room for their baggage, and for some reason they are nearly always late boarders.

    I hope this does not happen tonight on my flight home.

    Tom Otley

    Tonight at check in (in Hong Kong) the BA staff took out a tape measure, proved to the (economy) passenger it could not go on as hand luggage, and when she refused to pay for having a second bag checked, she walked away.


    Fellow passengers treating perfectly nice cabin crew as servants annoys me. A simple thank you is not a hard thing to say.

    Tom Otley


    In Economy: Passenger allocated to a middle seat. I’m in the aisle. Window is free. But they don’t want to move over.
    Passengers who move my bag in the overhead locker to make space for theirs.
    Passengers who ram their bag in the locker squashing my smaller bag and coat.
    Passengers who put their bags in the first locker and then walk to the back of the plane – I’ve been known to take their bag out again and leave it in the aisle.


    The only thing that bothers me – but it really gets me – is people having extra-loud conversations far into the night when others are trying to sleep (earplugs are a blessing here).

    Otherwise nothing or little bothers me and it’s striking to me how forbearing, and careful, almost everyone is in such a confined space on long haul flights.


    BEYbrit, I like your story of having “the entire upper deck of a RAM 747” to yourself.

    I flew Y class Jeddah to Dar Es Salaam on a Swissair DC-10 in 1981 and it was nearly empty – I couldn’t believe it so I walked around and counted everyone in Y – there were only 16 passengers, the best Y flight ever for room (and for sleep). Ah long-gone days.


    Passengers berating airline staff because they can, regardless of situation.
    – Passenger laying into check-in staff when ash cloud occurred, appeared to blame her for it occurring then not doing anything about it.
    – Passenger refusing to accept that their precious double bass needed to be put in the hold, stating they had been told “by someone” it could be seated with them (despite not having a ticket for it)
    – Passenger not getting their choice of meals, kicking off then demanding a J/C or F/P in compensation.


    In no particular order: passengers who:

    1. Leisurely stow their bags in the overhead lockers whilst other passengers are boarding and thereby cause a tailback to the door;
    2. Talk through the safety briefing;
    3. Travel in flip flops and similar and provide other passengers seated nearby with an ample view of their less than attractive feet;
    4. Remove not only their shoes but their socks in flight;
    5. Place their (even worse – naked) feet in a raised position against the bulkhead;
    6. Engage in loud conversations especially once lights are out;
    7. Don’t remove their headphones when being spoken to, especially by cabin crew;
    8. Don’t allow others to exit their seats upon disembarking;
    9. Upon taking their seat don’t respond to a greeting;
    10. Take your seat in the expectation that you will meekly take theirs in substitution (I don’t mind being asked to swap but it’s sheer effrontery when someone takes your seat before you get there yourself).

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