15 Ways You’re Annoying Your Seatmates

Air travel is a challenge any day of the year, but the agony is amped up during the holidays. Unless you want to recreate the chaotic running-through-the-airport scene from the movie “Home Alone,” read on.Thanksgiving marks the beginning of the hectic holiday travel season. Some 50.9 million people traveled 50 miles or more away from home last Thanksgiving, according to the American Automobile Association. More than half of them — 28.5 million passengers — were projected to travel on U.S. airlines during the 12-day Thanksgiving air-travel period (November 17 through 28) last year, according to Airlines for America.From how to prep for holiday travel to space-saving packing hacks to how to stay entertained at the airport, we’ve got you covered. To ensure you’re prepared, organized, and sane, so you can concentrate on celebrating the holidays, check out our ultimate airport survival guide.
Some travel costs are inescapable; after all, you’re probably not going to get a free hotel room or discount tickets to Disney World. However, you can cut costs on your next trip — you just have to know the right time to book your journey.
Whether your next vacation involves planes, trains, cars or cruise ships, take a look at these expert tips for booking your travel.
Slide 1 of 15: You’re Making Them Gag with Your Double-Onion Burger
Slide 2 of 15: Your Perfume Has Created a Cloud of Misery for Everyone Around You
Slide 3 of 15: You Have Bare Feet
Slide 4 of 15: You’re Using the Armrest in Front of You As a Footrest
Slide 5 of 15: You Haven’t Closed Your Window Screen (And Yours Is the Only One Open)
Slide 6 of 15: You’re Videochatting or Playing Games Without Headphones
Slide 7 of 15: You’re Poking the Person in Front of You
Slide 8 of 15: You’re Hogging the Arm Rest
Slide 9 of 15: You Went to Sleep the Moment You Claimed Your Aisle Seat
Slide 10 of 15: Your Seatmate Politely Said “Hello”… But You’re Still Talking to Them
Slide 11 of 15: You’re Grabbing the Seat in Front of You for Support
Slide 12 of 15: You Finally Found Time to Clip Your Nails
Slide 13 of 15: Your Shoulder Bag Keeps Hitting People in the Face
Slide 14 of 15: You’re Snoring
Slide 15 of 15: You’re Using Seats as a Handhold as You Walk Down the Aisle

You’re Making Them Gag with Your Double-Onion Burger

There’s a reason Queen Elizabeth banned garlic and raw onions from the Buckingham Palace kitchen: it not only perfumes the environment, but the breath of the eater as well.

What to do about it: Since the only thing that travels faster than gossip is stinky food odor, do everyone a favor and grab that burger before you get to the airport; even better, tone down the aromatics with a “hold the onions” order—or go for turkey on wheat.

Your Perfume Has Created a Cloud of Misery for Everyone Around You

It’s not just your cologne. That vanilla cinnamon bun hand lotion you adore (and slather on every 10 minutes) does not remind us of anything we’d actually like to consume.

What to Do About It: Go easy on the aftershave and fill that quart bag with unscented lotions. If you’re into aromatherapy, a dab of essential oil on your pulse points will keep you from oversharing.

You Have Bare Feet

No one wants to look at someone else’s feet, no matter how perfectly pedicured they happen to be. Also, your sandals are stinky.

What to Do About It: Instead of forcing us to look at your bare feet, keep your shoes on or slip into a pair of socks. Please. Especially if you’re going to use the back of our armrest as a footrest.

You’re Using the Armrest in Front of You As a Footrest

It’s easy to inch into someone else’s personal space when you’re tired and cramped, but this one goes beyond polite comfort-seeking. Not only can the person whose space you’re invading not escape your foot, but—overshare alert—if you’re wearing shorts and sitting in an aisle seat, everyone who walks down the aisle can check out your choice of underwear for the day.

What to Do About It: Pack enough soft clothes in your carryon so it can double as a footrest. And put on some underwear.

You Haven’t Closed Your Window Screen (And Yours Is the Only One Open)

You’re Videochatting or Playing Games Without Headphones

So. Aunt Martha is sick. And your dog misses you. And your spouse can’t find the leftovers you put in the fridge. Guess what? We don’t care about … anything you’re saying. And the slap of the cards during your solitaire game? We can hear that too.

What to Do About It: There’s a reason your phone probably came with headphones. Use them.

You’re Poking the Person in Front of You

Fact: every time you tap your screen, close your tray table or cram your giant water bottle into the seatback pocket, the person in front of you can feel it.

What to do about it: Yes, you were smart to bring your own water. No one expects you to keep all your junk in your lap either. Just be aware and try not to jam something into the seat pocket every 22 seconds.

You’re Hogging the Arm Rest

You’re big. Or you’re reading a full-sized newspaper. Or you’re just oblivious. But here’s the golden rule: whoever’s in the middle seat gets first dibs on the armrest and the air rights to the space over it.

What to Do About It: Be nice and share with others. You’re going to be sitting together for a long time. And you might need to borrow their charger.

You Went to Sleep the Moment You Claimed Your Aisle Seat

This can be awkward for just about everyone. The flight attendant has to reach over you. Your seatmate is trapped and can’t get out to go to the bathroom. Plus, you’re drooling.

What to Do About It: We want to show up at our destination as well rested, too, but if you plan on snoozing through the entire flight, be thoughtful and give your seatmate a chance to use the facilities before you pop that Ambien.

Your Seatmate Politely Said “Hello”… But You’re Still Talking to Them

Most people like to be pleasant, which, in most cases, means saying hello to the person with whom they’ll be sharing a very confined space for the next few hours. But that doesn’t mean they really want to know what’s going on in your life.

What to Do About It: Unless your next word is gesundheit … Stop. Talking. Now.

You’re Grabbing the Seat in Front of You for Support

You probably don’t realize it, but that convenient padded vinyl rectangle in front of you is someone else’s seat. They can feel it when you hang on it to sit or stand.

What to Do About it: Use your own arm rests to haul yourself up and your own seatback to guide yourself back into your seat. If you have to grab, at least apologize.

You Finally Found Time to Clip Your Nails

Your seat may feel like a pod of privacy, but it is not. Everyone can see what you’re doing and are hoping they don’t get hit by flying nail trimmings.

What to do about it: This isn’t just annoying, it’s gross. Don’t do it.

Your Shoulder Bag Keeps Hitting People in the Face

Good job packing everything into one carryon and one “personal item!” But guess what? You and your saddlebags are now wider than the aisle and your wake is strewn with angry—and possibly concussed—fellow passengers.

What to Do About It: We don’t like to check bags either. Avoid the issue by swinging whatever is hanging from your shoulder around to the front of your body. Or lighten your load.

You’re Snoring

Besides being irritated by the noise, we’re actually jealous that you can sleep so soundly on a plane.We get it. You can’t help it … unless you’d brought the Breathe Right strips that have been sitting unopened in your medicine cabinet.

What to Do About It: Just don’t be a grump when we gently poke you awake.

You’re Using Seats as a Handhold as You Walk Down the Aisle

As a general rule of thumb, the only time you should touch another seat is to place something in the seatback in front of you. Otherwise, you’re just an irritating space invader who jostled us awake.

What to Do About It: This isn’t duck, duck, goose. Keep your hands to yourself.

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