The news has been punctuated recently with flight diversions after rude passengers have become aggressive and even violent. A new phenomenon which has arisen, at least in the USA, is the ‘knee-lock’ a device which locks to the tray table of your seat in order to prevent the passenger in front from reclining their seat and intruding in your already limited personal space. The use of these devices has divided opinion, with some commentators of the opinion that it is poor flying etiquette to recline a seat when a passenger is sitting behind and others of the opinion it is acceptably to recline a seat. Arguments like these can be hard to settle civilly and in the US have led to headline news after flights had been diverted and criminal prosecutions followed due to the on-board ruckus.
Unfortunately, encountering rude flyers is just part and parcel of flying. However, it is important to maintain a diplomatic and calm air when dealing with a rude flyer. Here’s how:
Try to avoid a confrontation
If possible, try and avoid a confrontation with a rude flyer. Although to you, their behaviour may be the single most annoying thing on the planet, they could be quite unaware of what they are doing. It may seem irritating to try and sit through it, but if it is just a short flight, try some breathing exercises to relax and take your mind off things.
Always maintain a calm demeanour
Although other passengers may be an irksome irritant when flying, it’s best in any situation to maintain a calm, cool and collected demeanour. Remaining calm and politely asking another passenger to remove their arm from your armrest may resolve what is simply a misunderstanding, whereas being forthright can inflame tensions.
Airline staff are on hand
Just like every other passenger, you’ve paid for your plane ticket and may have parted with a substantial sum in order to jet away on that well-deserved holiday. Don’t allow yourself to be intimidated by other passengers who may take liberties with their arm rest or foot space or who may be in some other way obnoxious. Airline staff are experienced and well trained to defuse situations that may arise and if your rude fellow traveller refuses to desist from their behaviour, then notify the airline staff.
Date Published: September 30, 2014
Author: Accident Advice