How to be the perfect passenger… as told by a former cabin crew

It is true that the glamorous days of air travel are behind us. Nowadays by the time you have even got to the plane you have been subjected to vigorous security checks, countless queues plus the stress of checking to see if your passport is still in the pocket where you left it for the hundredth time. This means that once you board the plane you are feeling tired, frazzled and who better to take that out on that your cabin crew. After two years of working in the business of tired, grumpy, grouchy passengers I have compiled a how to guide to make your cabin crews’ day… or night. Read on to find out how to be the perfect passenger.

Make seat requests when you check in or better yet reserve your seat online

It will save your cabin crew from moving other passengers once you are on board and causing a right old kerfuffle… if your fellow travellers even agree to swap seats.

Respond when your cabin crew greets you

The perfect passenger knows that being on a plane is no different to regular life and common courtesy still applies, and that this goes for responding to your cabin crew when they speak to you.

Take responsibility for your luggage

When travelling it is tempting to squeeze everything including the kitchen sink into your hand luggage. This is totally fine, but make sure that you are the one to lift it into the overhead locker.

If you want something… get up and get it

Many cabin crew dream of a time when call bells are only to be pressed in an emergency. You will find that on most flights so many call bells have been pressed that the cabin is lit up like a Christmas tree. A perfect passenger will take their need a quench their thirst as an opportunity to stretch their legs and approach the galley for a G&T rather than pressing the call bell.

Be flexible – we’ve run out of chicken not fuel

Remembering that you will are on a plane and not in a restaurant will be much appreciated by your cabin crew. From graciously accepting the alternative option when your meal choice has run out to not kicking up a fuss when you don’t have an aisle seat, we love easy-going, relaxed passengers.

Don’t leave it till the last minute to go to the loo

It is common knowledge that while a plane is ascending or descending passengers – and crew – are required to be seated with their seatbelts fastened. As a perfect passenger using the periods where the plane is cruising to answer that call of nature will ensure minimal disruption.

When you are told to stay seated… stay seated

We know that you want to get off the plane as quickly as possible… but do you really think that you are going to be allowed to exit before the plane is even at the stand? As a perfect passenger wait until the seatbelt sign has been switched off to start the battle for bags, we promise you will get off at the same time as Mr Impatient next to you.


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