No one wants to be that passenger who acts inappropriately on an airplane. To keep the peace, here are five things you should avoid doing on an airplane.
Easter and Passover are quickly approaching, making for a busy travel time across the country. Here’s a look at what travelers should keep in mind ahead of and over the holiday weekend.
Be prepared for a lot of people
Bring that hand sanitizer! Between March 1 and April 30, a record 158.2 million passengers (aka 2.59 million every day) are expected to fly on U.S. airlines around the world, according to industry trade group Airlines for America. This is up 4.3% compared to the same time last year. Since this weekend falls in that window (and it’s the holidays), expect some congestion into, out of and at the airport.
Check your airline for flight delays, cancellations
When it rains, it pours. And when it pours, flying becomes trickier.
Be especially alert if you’re flying in and out of certain parts of the country. An alert on the National Weather Service‘s website warned as of Thursday morning: “A slight and enhanced risk of severe storms capable of tornadoes and extensive wind damage is expected across the central Gulf Coast states, South and Tennessee Valley; especially in Louisiana and Mississippi. Excessive rain is possible from the central Gulf Coast to the Ohio Valley.”
In particular, Dallas was experiencing delays and cancellations Thursday, and the storm is moving east.
Other tips for monitoring flight cancellations and delays:
- Bookmark your airline’s travel advisory page
- Follow your airline on social media
- Check your email for any flight changes (including your spam folder)
- Download your airline’s app
Pack your carry-ons with security lines in mind. Unless you’re eligible for the TSA’s Precheck lines, laptops and liquids must come out separately to go through the screening checkpoints (though you may get a break on this soon). The same thing goes for large electronics and food items. Remember, these items must each be placed in their own bins as you go through security.
For the infrequent flyers, remember that most liquids are prohibited from carry-ons unless they are in containers of 3.4 ounces or less and are held in a clear, quart-size plastic bag. (See the TSA’s “3-1-1” rules on liquids). Some exceptions are made for liquids related to medical or childcare needs, so brush up on those rules if they apply to you.
If you check a bag – either in advance or at the gate – remember to keep all of your important medicines and valuable items in your carry-on. If you’re forced to check a bag at the last moment after your plane runs out of overhead bin space, remove valuables as well as fragile items that could be damaged.
Lines may be longer, and airports and airplanes may be more crowded than normal. Nerves fray more easily. But even when things get stressful, take a deep breath and smile. A courteous nod to a fellow traveler will increase the chances that they’ll be courteous to you.
And never take out your frustrations on airline employees, most of whom are conscientious workers doing their best to get everyone on their way during an intensely busy time.
Even if you’re convinced your airline has wronged you, remember that these frontline workers often control your fate in getting to your final destination. Being polite and respectful will bring better service than being hostile or rude. Ask for a supervisor if you must, but know he or she may not have a different answer than the one you’ve already been given. Above all, always try to show everyone along the way the same respect you’d want.
Contributing: Ben Mutzabaugh, Julia Thompson
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