Long Haul Etiquette: 5 Things You Should Stop Doing

Be nice.
by | October 06, 2015

Long haul flights are not the most pleasurable experiences (and that’s putting it lightly). For some, a long haul flight equates to hell in transit. Cramped spaces, interrupted sleep, controlled eating time, limited bathrooms and enclosed breathing air—doesn’t that just spell fun?


While being an airplane passenger for at least six hours definitely has its drawbacks, let’s not forget a huge pro it brings: Setting foot in your dream destination at the end of it! So, suck it up and try your very best not to make the experience worse for others.

Don’t be a flight douche; abide by basic long haul etiquette! Here are 5 things you should stop doing.

Dominating Overhead Lockers

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This is a quirk of many Pinoys. We make sure our check-in luggage doesn’t go past the weight limit, so we don’t have to pay extra. That’s perfectly fine, but a lot of people compensate for that by transferring the things they were supposed to check-in into their hand-carry bag.

Don’t transport your whole house to the plane, tucked in the overhead locker. Think of other passengers who’ve also paid for some space in it. When packing your hand-carry, keep in mind that it should fit in the space under your seat if necessary.

Overusing the Recliner

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Yes, you’re entitled to recline your seat. But, just as how you’re entitled to free speech, you’re not supposed to abuse it. Always think of how it’s going to affect the people around you, aka your flight back mate.

Politely warn your back mate before reclining it and for goodness sake, do you really have to be horizontal including meal time? Straighten up your seat when the flight attendants serve the food. Also, please don’t resort to the Knee Defender, which has already stirred discussion of banning it. You can always talk to the passenger in front of you if he/she is being an aggressive recliner.

Being Greedy with the Armrest


Even in short flights, figuring out who gets the middle arm rests is a struggle. For those seated by the window and the exit row, you’re lucky to have one arm rest solely for you. How about the one seated in the middle, though? Always think about that person because he/she may experience not having any arm rest at all.

To avoid “ahems” and glares brought about by greedy elbows, nicely introduce yourself to your seatmates early on. This will make it easier to handle simple, yet crucial, issues like the armrest struggle.

Bringing Pungent Things


Keep in mind that you’ll be in an enclosed space for a long time with other people. Anything pungent that you bring to this enclosed space will be amplified. Durian, bagoong, curry, old socks, boiled eggs – be wary of what you bring that may be unpleasant for other passengers.

Loud Chatter


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Yes, we understand that you’re extremely excited about your destination, or that you’re really moved about what you’re watching. Go on, feel all of those emotions. BUT, either keep those emotions inside, or express them in a hushed manner.

Don’t think that you can talk to your Kumare that’s three rows away just by raising your voice. If it’s really that important, get up your seat and speak to that person with a low voice.


What else are your long-haul pet peeves? Warn a fellow passenger and share them below!

Shen Mascariñas travels mainly for the unique food each destination offers and for the "I'm on vacation" free pass to pig out.

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