air travel pet peeves

I’m feeling a little cantankerous today.

Channeling Maxine…


Today’s subject?

Air travel.

I’ve flown a lot more this past year than usual.

Nothing too exciting…just regular stuff.

People watching during air travel is riveting and revealing.

A person’s behavior on an airplane is a barometer of their character. You can quote me on that. 😉

Me? I’m a typical firstborn, a rule follower. I like justice and order.

And quiet.

Most of my fellow travelers of late have not subscribed to that school of thought.

Step foot onto an airplane and common sense, good manners, and decency are completely abandoned.

—spoiler alert— I deal with unpleasantries with humor and sarcasm. That’s just how I roll. If you prefer sunshine and lollipop posts, click away. 🙂

But if you like to laugh at things that annoy you. Jump on board. Pun intended.

Lemme break it down for ya.

Letterman style…

The top twelve offenders of air travel.

1.  “Rachel Rush-the-Gate

Rachel has a ticket marked zone 100. They are calling military personnel and people that need special assistance. Instead of hanging back for the ten minutes it will obviously take for her zone to be called , she beats it to the front of the line just to be “first.”



2. “Sammy Spray It

Sammy lets out the mother-of-all sneezes, yet makes no attempt to shield his fellow passengers from the contents of his nasal passage. Say it don’t spray it, Sammy.



3. “Betty Bag Rattler”

Oh Betty, you wouldn’t want to miss a speck of the pretzel dust hiding in the deepest recesses of that noisemaker of  a cellophane bag. The previous twenty minutes of bag rattling just weren’t enough. By all means, continue…


4.  “Peter Personal Space”

Peter is seated next to you and quickly commandeers the armrest. And goes into spread eagle mode with his legs way into your “personal space.” Never mind that I’m digging my legs into the wall of the plane to escape “stranger leg-touching” with you. Go on and make yourself comfortable.



5. “Lucy Look How Cute My Kid Is”

Lucy is obviously enthralled with every movement made and every word uttered from her offspring but that’s not enough. She thinks you are as well. And she gives an elevated decibel play-by-play of every single thing from wheels up to wheels down delivered in baby talk. “Oh yes, you DID finish your snack.” “Yes the airplane IS making a loud sound.”


6. “Sally Seat Kicker”

Sally is incapable of putting her feet on the ground. The back of your seat is where they are destined to be. Kicking is more fun than keeping still. The fact that my seat is violently rocking and my kidneys are shrieking in pain have no effect on Sally. It’s not Sally’s fault. It is Sally’s mother’s fault. Sally’s mother is creating a new generation of offenders.

See #’s 1, 3, 4, and 5.


7. “Charlie Claim Jumper

Charlie, you are seated in row Z. But by golly you are entitled to exit the plane first. You were absent the day they taught waiting your turn in kindergarten so you bull-rush your way to the front before the 25 rows of people before you.



8. “Nervous Nellie”

Nellie hates to fly. Nellie can’t suffer in silence. Can. not. do. it. She must share her fear (loudly) with everyone on the plane. She fidgets and squirms and huffs and sighs with a wild-eyed look of terror until I am certain we are all going to die.

Drama Queen.


9. “Air Marshall Annie

Annie is a flight attendant. But Annie feels she missed her calling as an air marshall. She likes to boss. She is intoxicated with “power.”  And don’t let that seat back be one millimeter from upright before landing or Annie will eviscerate you for all to hear.



10. “Rule Breaker Randy”

Sure the door to the aircraft is now closed and no less than twenty announcements to “power down” have been made. But the rules don’t apply to Randy. He needs to finish his “very important” cellphone conversation  while checking his email on his iPad. That’s okay, Randy. We’ll all just wait.

Butt head.

11. “Stinky Snack Packin Stan”

You are seated, you buckle up and are ready to relax. Stan opens up his snack bag and unleashes the scent of a dirty diaper filled with indian food. That potpourri mixed with the other various airplane aromas just kicked your gag reflex into high gear. Apparently the physics of pungent smells wafting through small, confined spaces escapes Stan.



12. “Businessman Bob”

Evidently Wall Street and the Dow are hanging in the balance awaiting the outcome of this urgent phone call that must be made from INSIDE the airplane. Loudly. Yes Bob, we all know how very important you are. Wrap it up at the gate, Bob. 


There you have it…

the top twelve air travel offenders.

What are your air travel pet peeves?

Spill ’em.

20 Responses to air travel pet peeves

  1. Lisa @ Fern Creek Cottage November 14, 2013 at 6:44 pm #

    Hilarious and so well written! I’ll never forget the time I was flying with a baby on my lap and I very nicely asked the flight attendant for a pillow. She told be I’d have to get up and look for one myself. So I just let my arm go numb from my sleeping baby resting all his weight against my elbow. I really wanted to write the airlines a complaint letter, but I was the mother of a baby and had a million other things to do each day. Whew…thanks for letting me vent!

  2. Melissa S November 14, 2013 at 7:00 pm #

    In the middle of a flight the lady seated in front of me pulled out some hardboiled eggs for a snack. Who does that??

  3. Jenna November 14, 2013 at 8:01 pm #

    How about when you get your pillow and/or blanket out to nap the flight away and obviously want to sleep, but the person seated next to you starts chatting your ear off so you can’t go to sleep.

  4. Stacey November 14, 2013 at 8:09 pm #

    No you forget Lean Back Larry who reclines his seat even though we are mashed in like sardines. There’s also Carry On Carla who brings everything she owns in carry on but can’t get down the aisle or lift it into the cargo space. 🙂

    • Maple & Magnolia November 14, 2013 at 8:41 pm #

      Stacey…crying with laughter…carry on Carla!!! Love it!

    • Margaret November 15, 2013 at 5:16 am #

      Love this one Stacey!

  5. Linda November 14, 2013 at 8:50 pm #

    You did it perfectly. No additions or corrections.

  6. Karen November 14, 2013 at 9:18 pm #

    Oh I’ve met Gassy Gus, really ? farting on a plane and breathing the recirculated air, Thanks!!! Vomiting Violet no words I might start gagging. And How about this trick you r late for your plane and you bring your luggage to the gate knowing damn well they won;t let you carry it on. This is typical in NY. One time so many people did this the Luggage shoot to the tarmac got jammed and the luggage handler had to crawl up the shoot to unclog it. That only took 45 mins.. %$#hole Alice!!!
    Ahhh I feel better now!

    • Allie November 15, 2013 at 1:40 am #

      Vomiting Violet! Ugh! I had to throw away a purse once because I had stowed it under the seat in front of me, only for the front passenger’s snacks to be regurgitated all over it. It was a total Sally’s Mother moment bc the kid wasn’t at fault. The child was two or threes years old and the parents decided it was easier (aka lazier) to shove food down their kid’s throat than deal with his behavioral issues. Instead of teaching him to use an indoor voice in a contained area with hard surfaces that echo not absorb sound they force fed him cheese sticks and goldfish. Instead of teaching him to entertain himself when he was bored for an hour and a half they cracked open juice boxes, teddy grahams, popcorn, and fruit snacks on top of the airline provided service. This led to new tantrums about not getting his way and not getting what he wanted bc the whole time he cried that he wasn’t hungry. They responded “Eat it! Eat it!”

      Perverted Pete. I was propositioned for sex and drinks for three and a half hours on a flight from Houston to Jacksonville with one stop. I’m not even attractive and had on a below-the knee skirt and completely buttoned up cardigan. The dude was brazen. I have never been so cheapened, disgusted, violated, and uncomfortable in my life. I had to deal with him prattling on about my legs, my hair, my earrings, my face, and that I looked like a “nice girl.” He asked me what I liked to do for fun. Then went on and on in detail about “hanky panky.” His words. I ignored him and he would not shut up. I tried sleeping. I tried reading. I tried knitting. He did not take the hint. Note to guys: Common courtesy deems that if a girl requires a parachute to escape your come-ons and pick up lines, leave her alone. Cornering a truly defenseless girl and vulgarity are not game. They’re vile.

    • Leida November 15, 2013 at 6:57 am #

      Ohhh, Gassy Gus. Don’t I know this one well?!! It was so bad that I had to discuss it with the fly attendant. OMG, what an awkward moment, but if I wouldn’t have done it, I just don’t think I would have made it alive to my destination because those things were coming out so HOT, and STINKY that I thought my nostrils were going to burn. OOPS, sorry for all this disgusting venting.

  7. Traci November 15, 2013 at 12:40 pm #

    Boy are you right on with this post. I think I have experienced everyone of them. Sometimes all on the same flight. This is great. You and I would travel together wonderfully by the way. I am the same as you.

  8. Bobbie November 15, 2013 at 1:10 pm #

    Nuff said! You nailed it!

  9. Cindy Van Brunt November 15, 2013 at 2:48 pm #

    Oh…you have nailed it!

  10. Stacey@Cottage Industry November 15, 2013 at 3:44 pm #

    Dying! This is so good and oh so true! Just experienced much of this since I went to AZ recently. How about when people are lining up to board and they are all spilled put into the terminal halls and you can’t even get through!?!? You know at o’hare how they have the “police” who tell you to move after you have sat in your car for a nano second to pick someone up….well, they need that for the people spilling into the halls/walkways! So annoying. I guess all this rushing to be first even thought you have your assigned zone is so they don’t run out of baggage carry on space by the time you get on the plane…but still, it’s so obnoxious.

  11. Laura November 15, 2013 at 10:52 pm #

    I’m laughing too hard to think of anything else. Bwahaha!!! xo Laura

  12. Donnamae November 16, 2013 at 1:03 am #

    Between your list and the comments….what a riot! Thanks for the laugh! Great list, unfortunately…so true! 😉

  13. Burlap and Boots December 4, 2013 at 4:45 pm #

    Love it! And thank you…I am now terrified of our upcoming 12 hour flight to Europe. Especially since I haven’t been on a plane in 15 years…and flew a whopping 2 hours.
    But its okay…I am prepared!

  14. Laurel Stephens December 18, 2013 at 2:35 am #

    Funny, and right-on!

  15. Julianne January 31, 2014 at 12:51 pm #

    I know I’m late to commenting on this, but I just have to!! lol

    My favourite…NOT!….is when buddy directly in front of you, decides to put their chair aaaaaaallllll the way back.

    I’m sorry, but the space between the seats is way too small these days. People eat at various times, go to the bathroom, need into their belongings during the flight and it’s just plain claustrophobic!

    We all love to be comfortable, but seriously, airlines should do away with this feature if they are going to continue to squish us in like sardines. Our little family has been on way too many 6+ hr. flights where at least one person in front of us lays back the entire flight and we can’t move, eat, help our kids, etc. Absolutely hate this!

Leave a Reply

Designed by Chena Designs Development and Hosting by Evenpar Solutions