Skip to main content

Next time you step on a plane, don't let the flight attendants' pearly smiles fool you.

Deep down inside, those men and women in crisp shirts and perky neck scarves are bracing themselves for the irritations that you, dear traveller, unwittingly represent. (Their biggest pet peeve: Passengers who hog the aisle to reorganize their stuff, oblivious to the bottleneck stretching to the front of the plane.)

Fortunately, they have tricks up their sleeves to keep you from getting on their nerves. Here are a few, submitted by anonymous flight attendants and compiled by George Hobica, founder of airfarewatchdog.com, for Fox News:

Story continues below advertisement

1. Serve weak drinks to the boozers in business class. "If they order a mixed drink, we will dip the rim of their glass in the liquor but fill most of the glass with mixer to weaken the drink. Most of the time, they don't notice. If they order wine or beer, we fill it only half way and don't provide the can of beer."

2. Watch what passengers are doing on their laptops and iPads. "Most of the time it is boring business work, but I have caught people looking at pornography before. … I never interfere unless it is disturbing other passengers."

3. Pull down the window shades during long flights. "We try to keep window shades closed on long flights because it helps people to fall asleep … giving us more time to rest."

4. Be extra nice to well-dressed customers. "You just know that the suit-and-tie traveller probably paid more for their ticket than the flip-flop-and-shorts-wearing flyer. Courtesy is important to all passengers, but our airline would not be flying were it not for the premium travellers who subsidize the leisure travellers' low fares."

Clearly, flight attendants are not frequenting the same airports as American commentator Froma Harrop, who describes "a nation of slobs parad[ing] through the crossroads of America," and adds, "the richer this country gets, the more slovenly people have become."

Do you have any tips of your own for dealing with flight crew?

Report an error Editorial code of conduct
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

Comments that violate our community guidelines will be removed.

Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

To view this site properly, enable cookies in your browser. Read our privacy policy to learn more.
How to enable cookies