Flying would be awesome if it weren't for all those other people on the plane. Even if they don't mean to, in the flying sardine can that is an airplane, every little thing seems as if it is the most annoying action in the world. From crying babies to stinky armpits, frequent fliers have been exposed to it all. Are you guilty of any of these airplane pet peeves?

sleep hog


1. Armrest Stealing

If only airlines would splurge and put in some extra large armrests. Armrest stealing – or armrest wrestling – is going to be an issue regardless of if you are sitting next to a friend or a stranger. It starts with arms awkwardly touching, then maybe a bump. Slowly, this devolves into a bitter and usually wordless feud until someone just completely surrenders their territory by crossing their arms and pretending to go to sleep.


2. Loud Talking

When the plane is in midflight and there is the quiet hum of the engines and the slightly louder hum of 50 different quiet conversations going on, there is always that one pair of people who want to carry on a conversation as if they were in their own home. What's worse is when their conversation sets the volume for all the other conversations and suddenly instead of riding on an airplane, you find yourself on a school bus full of excited youths on a field trip. At that point, sleeping through a two-hour flight or trying to read without a headache is just out of the question.


3. Stealing Overhead Space

overhead compartment luggage


You've boarded in an orderly manner, taken off your suit jacket, folded it nicely and placed it in the overhead compartment. As you've settled in for a nice flight filled with the sport of armrest wrestling, some great lunk-head sporting a large rolling suitcase, a stroller and a cello case comes in and plays Tetris in your overhead area before taking their seat five rows in front of you. Not only do they hold up your departure getting off the plane, but your suit jacket is wrinkled beyond recognition.


4. Large Carry-Ons

There is always that one person with a bag that is far too large to be a carry-on bag. Whether they are bumping the elbows of the people in the aisle row or rolling their bag over their toes, they don't seem to be fazed. The only thing that matters to them is that they will have a suitcase full of clothes on hand all through the flight for a midflight wardrobe change.


5. Noisy Games

Frequent fliers have learned that boarding an airplane without good headphones is a recipe for disaster. Between that talking and the general airplane noise, the age of mobile technology has brought with it its own sound annoyances. People playing mobile phone games with the sound on are a scourge upon the world. Are you expecting a call at thirty thousand feet? There is absolutely no reason to have the volume on your phone turned up during a flight. The constant beeps and boops may not drive the culprit insane, but it has a grating effect on everyone around them.


6. Living In The Toilet

As you stand cross-legged in front of the airplane bathroom, you can't help but wonder: What are they doing in there? Of course, the reasonable part of the brain feels sorry for someone who needs that much time in the bathroom in the middle of a flight, but your bladder demands that they get out – and soon! Not only is standing outside of the bathroom embarrassing, but there is also that unpleasant moment when you meet eyes with the person who was inside. And isn't having to use the airplane bathroom punishment enough?

7. Poor Personal Hygiene

If the airport was closed for a storm and people had to sleep at the airport, than perhaps poor hygiene can be excused. However, sitting next to someone to whom soap, water and deodorant is a foreign concept is just the worst. Sure, airplanes are giant flying sardine cans but they definitely don't need to smell like one. It is for this very reason that attendants carry deodorant onboard with them.

8. Babies Crying

Infant plane passenger


A baby's cry is meant to be grating; it's something primitive to get us to take care of our young. So is it wrong to get mad at babies for doing what babies do? No, so long as they belong to other people and not us. Many believe that airlines should implement 'kid-free' zones on planes. However, even a thin curtain separating everyone from a bawling section full of unhappy families is not likely to stop the noise completely.

9. Reclining Seats

lean back airplane chair

There are few things worse than having a person in front of you who uses the reclining seat on a short flight. Even on a long flight, it is still a nuisance. It's not like half-lying-down and half-sitting-up is even comfortable. However, sitting up looking at the dandruff problem of the passenger in front is just terrible. The worst part is that it inspires a chain reaction. Someone does it, then to relieve the seat from their face, the person behind them does it, and so on and so forth.

10. Kicking The Seat

In order to save money on fuel, airlines make their seats out of super light materials. Not only will they transmit the slightest tap of the person behind you, but they will amplify it until even a slight foot tap is jarring. When it comes to kids drumming on the seat, kicking it or putting their feet on it, of course asking them to stop is just going to make them do it more.

11. Bare Feet

Some people just feel so comfortable on an airplane surrounded by people that they take their shoes off, maybe even their socks too, and make themselves comfortable. Shoes are there to protect our feet, but also to protect others from them. They may be hot and constricting, but they also keep that sweaty foot stink in its cage where it belongs. Airing those bad boys out on a plane is just a terrible idea, as there isn't much place for it to dissipate. It's there for the people next to you, and several rows up, to enjoy – or rather – gag upon.

12. People Trying To Leave First

Disembarking a plane can be stressful, especially when there are those people who do not respect protocol. They will be up and out of their seat in order to zip past everyone else and try to get off maybe 30 seconds before they would have if they had waited. This is another event that causes a chain reaction. Once they move, the person behind them will think it is okay. Suddenly, you are standing in your row as the back 15 rows are getting off the plane.

13. Germs

Statistically, on a plane full of people, there is always going to be at least one person who is coughing or sneezing. Hopefully, they will be polite and at least cover their mouth, but that is sadly not always the case.

14. Moving Into The Open Middle Seat

Despite all the annoyances on an airplane, there is one thing that can make all that better: having a quiet neighbour and an open middle seat between you. Ah, the glorious space. You find yourself confident that this is going to be a great flight and no one's foot odor or seat tapping is going to ruin that. Until someone saunters on up and sits down between you and your distant, silent friend. They'll begin to complain about their seat neighbour where they were previously sitting. Of course, you will be polite, but everyone knows that on the inside you are seething. Except the guy who just sat down, of course.


What's your biggest pet peeve in-flight? 
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