Traveling can be a dread sometimes, with unexpected delays, canceled flights, luggage requirements or the possibility of seating next to—or within earshot of—a crying baby. Most of all, we have an excessive amount of fear over our fellow adult traveling companions.
You know, the ones that hog armrests, push their seat back into your lap, yap incessantly, and may even need a little extra deodorant.
So in the interest of happy voyagers, here are some rudeness prevention secrets to help you not be “that” passenger.
In a nutshell, the answer was to show respect for others and set a good example. Sounds simple, right?You need to start there because there’s no escape on an airplane. The option of changing flights, or even changing seats, isn’t available in the air like it would be if you were on a bus where you could get off at the next stop. There might be an empty seat elsewhere, but oftentimes, not.
That means you need to control your smells.
Hygiene is key when you’re on a plane. Shower, sponge bath, even some baby wipes in key places can make a big difference. While you’re at it, consider a swig of mouthwash or a breath mint if you’re interested in a conversation with your seatmates.
And if you bring snacks along, be respectful of aromatic food. Yes, a hard-boiled egg is a great source of protein and will keep you sated, but it may also cause hardship for your neighbors. Remember, you’re in a small space and air filters can only do so much.
Invest in headphones or earbuds and spare everyone around you the action movie you’re engrossed in. And not everyone is a fan of your favorite dance tracks. Be selfish and keep the music to yourself. Consider it a personal concert. If you do speak to someone, be sure to remove said devices so you don’t speak more loudly than normal.
It’s just downright rude to post pictures of your fellow travelers without their permission and sharing it online. So refrain from grabbing a quick pic of a fellow traveler for the sole purpose of laughing at them. Don’t do it.
Here’s a big no-no while in a small space: invasion of personal space.
We’ve all heard personal space referred to a “bubbles” or “hula hoops” and are told not to break into those that belong to another. The same holds true whether you’re on the ground or in the air. Be cognizant of respecting other people’s space. It just that simple. Keep your feet on the floor and not on the armrest of another passenger.
Speaking of spreading out, keep your germs to yourself. Sneezing, coughing and the like should be done into your the crook of your elbow or sleeve. Don’t sneeze into your hands and then handle the tray table or video screen. Use hand sanitizer if you’re sick, and wipe down the surfaces with a sanitary wipe. (Imagine the person who sat there before you was a big hand sneezer.)
Lastly, be respectful of the flight crew. Flight attendants are not on the flight to tend to you personally. If you need something, ask politely and wait patiently. They are there to ensure the safety of all. That includes speedy and safe boarding and exiting the plane, too. The experts suggested showing gratitude to flight attendants.
In the end, travel etiquette is pretty simple: Stay in your bubble and spread kindness, not germs.
What are some of your rudeness prevention secrets? What do you wish your fellow travelers knew? Share them with us on our Facebook page, or on our Twitter stream. You can also find us on our Instagram page at @TravelproIntl.
Photo credit: MaxPixel.net (Creative Commons 0)