Digging your knees into the seat in front of you. Putting down someone else’s window shade. Smoking. There are a lot of things you shouldn’t do on a flight.
But there is a special place in hell reserved for the people who commit one particular sin – and believe it or not it’s quite common. You could even go as far as to call it the pet peeve of regular flyers.
What is it? Overtaking people to leave the plane.
It might sound innocuous. But if you think about all the other sins often involved – standing up as soon as the plane lands, waiting in a weird, hunched over position, waggling your backside in more patient passengers’ faces, rushing down the aisle even before the passengers in front of you have – it’s really quite annoying.
So annoying, in fact, former flight attendant Kat Kamalani has taken to TikTok to express her approval of a video (by @karalenee47) which says “people who try to get off an airplane before others seated in front of them should be put on a ‘no fly’ list immediately.”
Watch the video, which shows a passenger trying to disembark a flight before others in front of them, below.
In the comments section of her video, a deluge of TikTok users agreed with her. “Seriously!! This common courtesy and people don’t get it!” one wrote.
“I totally agree with you,” said another.
Another said: “Seriously 😡 that is my pet peeve. I’ll stand in the isle and refuse to move to anyone behind me.”
Others, however, explained why they do it, or why there might be certain circumstances in which it’s acceptable.
“The ONLY time this is ever acceptable is if that person has a close connection to catch and then they should be let off first,” one claimed.
A couple of others asked probing questions like: “What if we don’t have a carry on????” and “What if you are ready to get off and the person is not ready to get off the plane and is taking their sweet time getting their stuff together?”
“If you have a tight connection flight you can let them know. I’ve done it twice and they made sure I got off first.”
Finally, some other social media users vented some frustrations of their own: “Or those in back that STAND IN THE ISLE THE SECOND THE PLANE PULLS INTO THR GATE. Sit down and wait.”
Similar condemnations and justifications were made over on the original video, on @karalenee47’s account. Some said the reason they do it is because they are tired of sitting, and others said it’s due to having a tight layover (or feeling justified in overtaking sluggards who have carry on luggage).
This isn’t the first time this topic has made waves. Business class passengers were singled out in 2020 by blogger Zach Griff, who said it was annoying at the best of times but even worse during a pandemic.
He said: “On both of my recent flights, passengers popped right up when they heard the ‘chime,’ despite repeated announcements to stay seated… Not sure exactly what airlines can do about it, but it needs to be addressed.”
DMARGE spoke to Australian Wellness Ambassador for Etihad, Kiara Graham, at the time, to get her thoughts on the issue.
She told DMARGE: “This is always such a hot topic and I think it’s understandable that a lot of passengers will do things that they’ve always done when travelling – and it does take a bit of time to adapt to a new way of travelling.”
“For me, communication is key here. We have to re-educate passengers on how to travel.”
From the looks of social media, it seems many irritated passengers would be wishing said “re-education” will take place in the form of cattle prods…
In the meantime though, you’ll probably have to settle for a dirty look.