10 ways you are being a self-centered airplane seatmate.

Don’t assume because you’ve paid for first-class tickets, you’ll be sitting next to someone with first-class social skills. Unfortunately, airlines don’t make you sign an agreement:

I (insert traveler), promise to be considerate and courteous, or else, at the discretion of the flight attendant, I will be moved to the back of the plane, without a refund.  

I’ve seen some airplane travelers, make themselves at home. I have a message for you: You are NOT HOME. We are NOT your family. We would like to be comfortable too, but we have decided to behave like a grown-up and put on our “public manners.” 

Naturally, there are exceptions when we might remove our shoes or snack at an odd hour. When you ask?  Typically, on long flights. But even then there are considerations. 

Certainly several more tips could be added to the list, for now, here are 10 ways you are being self-centered:

  1. Aisle seat passengers: Don’t get all huffy when the “window seat” passenger arrives, and you have to get up to let them squeeze in. You probably selected your seat, right?  So, graciously get up.
  2. Window and middle seat passengers: Don’t wait to go to the lavatory until the aisle seat passenger begins to doze off. Plan ahead a little.
  3. Jolting the passenger in front of you: When using the tray-table, gently bring it down and gently return it. Be aware of any pounding or constant pushing on the tray-table; they can feel your every move.
  4. The “touch-screen”: Touch, don’t poke! Again, the person in front of you can feel every tap and poke.
  5. Unless you’re seven years old, keep your stinking shoes on! Oh, but what about flip-flops? Although convenient, bare feet in a closed-in vessel is just not considerate. It’s all perception. For more reasons not to wear flip-flops in public: ABC News/Health.
  6. Lunchtime: Don’t bring aromatic foods onto the plane. First of all, you’ve probably been sitting at the airport for at least an hour–why didn’t you eat it then?  It is super rude and inconsiderate to expose other paying travelers to the aromas of your leftovers or onion-pesto sandwich.
  7. Personal pillow: Don’t bring your smelly sweaty pillow on board. But if you insist, wash it!
  8. Reading material: Don’t think you can heedlessly open your newspaper, turning pages at your leisure expecting your seatmate to constantly be forced to lean over. That is just absurd.
  9. Overflow: The delicate subject of a heavy-set passenger has been a plight, not only for airlines, but for passengers as well. No one has the right to infringe on another paying passenger’s space. Simple, right? We’ll leave it here for now. A future blog to come.
  10. Obnoxiously loud: Everyone is a paying traveler. Not everyone is on their way to spring break, a bachelor party, or girls get-away weekend. No, I don’t want to smother your fun, but it is very self-centered to force others to essentially be a part of your trip. Laugh and chat, but keep it down.

___Prepare for success; cultivate your social skills.

speaker, etiquette, social skillsI’m Rosalinda Oropeza Randall, Social Skills and Etiquette Speaker/Trainer, Media Source, and author of “Don’t Burp in the Boardroom.”

I offer presentation/keynotes to support HR policies, sales team, managers, as part of the new-hire orientation process, in-home technicians, professional development events, conferences, college/university students, interns. For more information, please contact me.