In the summer months, around 6.8 million passengers depart from Schiphol airport every month. Annoyances are unavoidable in these peak hours, such as passengers who fold the seat back without mercy or people who repackage their hand luggage in the aisle. A former flight attendant and people who fly regularly explain the aircraft etiquette.
Look at the gate for your seat number and when you can board
Airlines divide the space in the aircraft into zones. Passengers with seats in zone A may enter first, followed by passengers with seats in zone B, and so on. On your boarding pass it is stated in which zone your aircraft seat is located.
"Read carefully what it says," says frequent flyer Jeffrey Lijffijt. For his work, he has been flying every week for five years to a destination in Europe or to the Middle East. "Often there is a huge ant nest at the gates or people try to get in for their turn. The ground stewards then have to send them away again. That way you keep everyone up."
Consult before you fold your chair back
The adjustable seat is a major issue for many travelers. According to former stewardess Marieken Franse, most aircraft seats have a system that blocks when the backrest is set too far back. "That way you can never take up all the space of the person behind you," she says.
But in the limited space of the aircraft, people still experience it as annoying. "In consultation you can always go a bit back", says business traveler Jessica Lacor. "But you just have to check it with the person behind you. For the same money someone has a child on his lap or hot coffee on the fold-out table."
"People mainly blow out of relief: pfiew, we are back on the ground" Marieken French, former stewardess
According to frequent flyer Lijffijt, this is sometimes sensitive, because all passengers have paid for their seats and therefore have the right to do whatever they want with it. "But it really happens that people fold their seats back, hit your knees and push them a little bit harder."
Be careful when storing luggage in upper compartments
Merel Vercammen is a violinist and often travels with her violin case. "As a kind of police officer, I have to keep an eye on what people do with it. Many people think that you can throw a heavy trolley on it and that it fits with a little push. Sometimes they even try to take the box out. People have no idea what valuables can be in the upper compartments. "
"As far as I am concerned, rule number one is to handle other people's things with care and ask if you can move something", the violinist says.
Follow the instructions of the airline
"Check how much hand luggage you can take with you", says Lijffijt. "If you try to go inside with six bags, you have to hand them all over. I often see enough people discussing this with the cabin crew."
Former French flight attendant endorses this. "The fact that the backrest has to be raised, the table folded up, the shutters raised and the luggage tucked away, that is really not to bother you. People do not realize that this is for their own safety. If you do not wear your seat belt, we will leave Just no."
"The safety rules are not meant to bother you," said Marieke-French stewardess. (Photo: 123RF)
Clapping on landing: Polite or unnecessary?
Many frequent flyers are annoyed by applauding fellow passengers after landing. Lacor: "You also do not flap for the cashier or the baker. The pilot is just doing his job."
Do the pilots and the cabin crew also think they are a no-go? French: "I could never get angry about it, I always had to laugh at it terribly. The applause was mainly due to relief: pfiew, we are back on the ground. The pilots themselves cannot hear it, because the door to the cockpit is just closed. But if clapping is a way to thank you: why not? "
Remember that flying is new to most fellow passengers
People just linger and sometimes act unthinkingly. "If you fly often, you are used to everything and you get annoyed faster. While you also know: ten years ago I didn't fly that often either," says Lijffijt. "Then maybe I was a little awkward."
French: "Remember that people from other cultures are also sitting on your plane with you. You can be very annoyed by someone who is noisy, but that may mean something completely different for that person."