IT'S almost unavoidable. If you go on holiday, the chances are you'll have to fly. But what are the most annoying things your fellow passengers do in-flight?
I try to be a tolerant passenger. I take the view that we're all going to cooped up together for a couple of hours at least, so let's try and get on. There are some things, though, which make this difficult.
1. Crying babies
Before any parent snaps - I am a parent (of a now 8-year-old girl) who did her fair share of howling on planes. I was an uncomprehending and unsympathetic childless twenty-something before that. But whichever way you cut it, a screaming baby is not good for a restful flight experience. And if it is yours who's screaming - that's ten times worse.
2. Bare feet
Looking at various surveys - this comes up a lot and I can understand why. There is no pong like feet pong, especially in the confines of an aircraft cabin. I must confess to being a committed feet nudist. As your feet swell at altitude, it makes sense to at least take your shoes off - losing socks as well makes life much more comfortable. I do, however, deodorize thoroughly, as the Americans would say.
3. Reclining the seat
It's strange how, although this is perfectly legal and encouraged, there are few things the person in front can do that are as tiresome as thrusting their bulk onto your lap. Much worse if you’re sat in a back row.
4. Watching anything without headphones
Annoying anywhere, the generous types who want to share every loud moment of their DVD or game are the bane of the traveller's life. Oblivious to the invention of the headphone, turning it down is no help - it'll just be tinny and incomprehensible rather than loud and comprehensible. Tell the stewardess on them, quick.
5. Hogging the overhead locker
A big problem since charging for hold-luggage became common-place. There is a big incentive in travelling quite light and carrying a small suitcase as hand-luggage. A barely cabin-legal suitcase being wheeled up the aisle is guaranteed to elicit snarls from fellow-flyers.
6. Compulsive leg-shaking
This is bad enough on a train, but in the far more intimate cabin of an aircraft this could ruin your chances of having a pleasant flight. If it carries on too long, you'd be well within your rights to complain to a stewardess. Or karate chop him on the offending leg.
7. Fly chattering class
Now I have no objection to a bit of polite conversation - you may even find you're sat next to one of the most fascinating people you'll ever meet. But mostly, anyone who is still chuntering on after ten minutes should have it made clear that they should shut up, or that you're not listening. In the most polite terms possible, of course.
8. On your marks...
As soon as the engines wind down and the seatbelt sign goes off, there are some who leap to their feet and stand poised for the next aeon waiting to leg it from the aircraft. I've noticed the people who do this tend to sigh heavily, while the ones still seated don't. Were they this impatient sat down or did they expect to be let off as soon as we had stopped?
What do you think are the most annoying things people do on planes? Leave a comment and let us know.