Travel etiquette: are you doing it right? 12



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Travelling can be enjoyable, but it also has its fair share of stresses. Who, for example, gets the armrest when you’re flying? Should you talk to your fellow travellers?

The following do’s and don’ts, recently released by Skyscanner, can help takes some of the confusion out of travelling. Are you obeying these rules? Or have you found yourself accidentally crossing the line on others?

Number 1 is to board when called forward. If your seat hasn’t been called, sit back and relax. There’s a reason airlines call you by seat and it’s to do with making boarding as smooth as possible. Don’t fight it.

Number 2 is to be prepared. If  you know you are going to have to produce your boarding pass and passport have it handy. Don’t wait until you are at the checkpoint to fumble in your handbag.

Number 3, is to have patience. Some people are just slow doing things but huffing and puffing and trying to push past won’t solve the problem.

Number 4 is the old chestnut about who gets the armrests on the plane. Skyscanner says there is no debate on this one, the middle seat gets the armrests because the poor person in the middle seat misses out on the sky view from the window seat and the convenience of the aisle seat.

Number 5 is talk to your neighbours. Especially if you will be seated next to them for a few hours, exchanging a few pleasantries breaks the ice and makes things a little more relaxed. If you don’t want to chat further, just pop your earphones on because these are a social “quiet time” signal.

Number 6 is ask before you recline, or at least ask your immediate neighbour. Your seat should also never be reclined during a food or drinks service either. When you do put your seat back, do it gently so the person behind doesn’t get a sudden shock.

Number 7 is to respect personal space. Stay within the boundaries of your own seat area and leave your personal hygiene routine to the bathroom.

Number 8 is walk in the ‘fast’ lane. This applies to all public transport, but also on airport escalaators and walkways.

Number 9 is tip according to the country you are in. This is one of the areas Australians fall down the most in because tipping is not commonplace here. However, in many other countries it is, and workers rely on it for a sizeable part of their income.

Number 10 is get things wrong. If you stuff up, apologise. A polite smile and wave of “sorry” can go a long way.

What do you think? Do you agree with everything on the list, or is there anything you would add?


Starts at 60 Writers

The Starts at 60 writers team seek out interesting topics and write them especially for you.

  1. Tipping is a tricky thing, yes waiters, taxi drivers, doormen and delivery people I think we all know, but I fell foul of a hairdresser for not tipping her. I’d just not considered it, no slight was intended. One of my pet bugbears when boarding a plane is those with aisle seats that board in the first rush then have to stand in the aisle blocking access to those further down the plane while the window and middle seat people settle in.

    2 REPLY
    • Not always easy to get into window and middle seats. Very little space to move across and one airline thinking of adding more seats in same space.

    • Tipping – employers’ devious/lazy/greedy way of paying less in wages. Australia and New Zealand don’t tip. USA need to sort their stuff out and pay a “living” wage!
      I’m sick of the idea that the customer may feel compelled to contribute extra towards the “service-person’s income. If, on the other hand, you’re impressed with the service, feel free to tip. 😀

  2. What is the Fast LANE? Keep to the Right or Left? I suppose it depends which country you live in. We drive on the Left hand side of the road so I would walk down on the Left and let anyone pass to my right who wants to go faster. People who drive on the right and in which country I land I would do the opposite and walk on the right. However I may be wrong? but it makes sense to me.

  3. I had my first commercial flight in 1955, Brisvegas to Townsville (BrokenHill by the sea). For 27 years of my working life I travelled on average 30 weeks a year so I have seen the Good, the Bad and the Ugly on aircraft, in hotels and in restaurants. B|

  4. I agree with all, especially about warning the passenger behind you before reclining your seat. I have had hot drinks spilt on me, my knees crushed which is extremely painful with my knees, and what’s more no apology or attempt to put the seat up again. I guess some people just have no manners at all.

  5. All common sense and I believe I manage thrm most of the time. Currently in the USA so I have become accustomed to tipping even if the service isn’t that good. I wish the Americans would pay decent wages though.

  6. Last time i flew premium economy and for a little extra the middle seat of a row of three is therefore empty. oh the luxury of not fighting for the armrest.

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