Hedonistic New Trend Sparks Business Class Etiquette Debate

Yay or nay?

Hedonistic New Trend Sparks Business Class Etiquette Debate

Image Credit: Getty Images

Think a pandemic was the only thing to go viral in 2020 and 2021? Think again.

A business and first class trend called ‘slammertime’ has been sweeping the skies. The trend started becoming popular in 2020, and involves filming yourself skulling a flute of champagne (or another kind of alcoholic beverage) and sharing it with your Instagram followers, nominating a number of them to follow your lead.

The creator of ‘slammertime’ told DMARGE last year that ‘slammertime’ started as a gentle f*ck you to the pointy end snobs of the world (as well as just “a huge amount of fun”).

“The whole thing of slammers started when I had never flown in business class and felt heavily judged and profiled for how I dressed, acted and behaved. I don’t think there should be a stigma about nice things. How many people have walked into a really nice restaurant or hotel and felt profiled?”

“This shouldn’t be the case and it’s a bit of fun trying to break down classist boundaries which I don’t think should exist. The behaviour is light-hearted and fun and brings us as everyday people together. I must get sent hundreds of videos each week from people of all backgrounds doing a slammer on a plane or at home, and it’s just a fun thing. Similar to perhaps doing a round of shots on a night out.”

Watch frequent first and business class flyer James Asquith demonstrate how you do a champagne slammer in the video below

Canadian travel hacker Spencer Giles, who “was introduced to [‘slammertime’] by people on Instagram,” said part of the attraction was the reaction.

“It’s entertaining when you get a sudden eye roll or reaction from an elite frequent flyer on board in first or business class cabins. Its something we look forward to and will continue to do so on all our trips when possible.”

Perth-based travel blogger and owner of Flight Hacks Immanuel Debeer (who is also a ‘slammertime’ enthusiast) told DMARGE in 2020 that ‘slammertime’ was “the only morale booster these days.”

Immanuel last month shared a video of a fellow ‘slammertime’ enthusiast (founder of Straight To The Points Spencer Howard) smashing a flute of champagne over in America (in the JFK Clubhouse bar, to be precise).

Watch Spencer smash that champagne in the video below

“The Virgin Atlantic Clubhouse isn’t open for an hour. Should I burn some skymiles on a bottle of champagne?” Spencer asked followers, providing them with two options: (yes, or “I don’t like fun”).

Underneath, a caption read “Anyone at JFK and want to do slammers?”

He then shared the video you can see above of ‘slammertime’ before eventually flying to London with Virgin Atlantic in seat 1A.

Sydney University professor of sociology Robert Van Krieken reckons ‘slammertime’ came about, mostly, due to the technological revolution, and the “performativity of Instagram and Twitter.”

“They’re communicating primarily with their social media audience, not with the other people on the plane.”

In terms of in flight etiquette, a Qantas flight attendant told DMARGE last year she sees two sides to ‘slammertime.’

“I see a lot of people drinking too much and mixing drinks with sleeping pills… it never ends well. It’s a plane not a restaurant. People should remember that and respect flight attendants.”

However, she also said, “I definitely wouldn’t see it as rude. Airlines such as Qantas pride themselves on making customers feel welcome and at home… many people are excited and paid a large amount to fly. I personally love a few bubbles with arriving on board a business class flight.”

“However common sense must prevail. And customers must remember it’s not a bar. There’s a time and place for getting smashed and a plane is not it. So knowing when to stop and acknowledging the demands that air travel has on the body is really important.”

Whatever your take on it, ‘slammertime’ appears to be growing. In November 2020 there were 2,612 Instagram posts with the hashtag ‘slammertime’. In August 2021 there were 2,885.

Whatever floats your boat throat.

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