- Flight attendants have to deal with some pretty annoying – and sometimes downright gross – passenger behaviour.
- However, according to the former flight attendant who now runs the popular Instagram account “Passenger Shaming,” there are also two things that make a passenger stand out in a positive way.
- Shawn Kathleen told INSIDER that it can be as simple as saying “hello” and “thank you.”
- She also said you should never treat a plane like your own living room.
- Visit INSIDER’s homepage for more stories.
Shawn Kathleen, the former flight attendant who runs the popular Instagram account “Passenger Shaming,” knows more than most about bad plane behavior.
The account, which now boasts 850,000 followers and constitutes her full-time job, initially began as a journal she kept about passengers’ behaviour while she was in the sky. Eventually, crew members started to send her photos of passengers behaving badly – and now members of the public do, too.
However, she told INSIDER that life in the sky isn’t all bad – and while there are certainly passengers with disgusting habits or stupid questions, there are also two basic good behaviors that make a passenger stand out in a positive way.
1. Start with a simple ‘hello,’ and say ‘thank you’
- Passenger Shaming
Shawn Kathleen told INSIDER standing out is as simple as starting with a “hello” and saying “thank you.”
“I know it sounds so basic and ridiculous, but it’s true,” she said. “Acknowledge this is somebody’s job. They might be on their 6th flight of the day.
“Just be nice, follow instructions, [and don’t] challenge the crew when they say we need you to get your seatbelt on.”
She added that passengers “don’t see the back end of the captain saying ‘make sure everybody’s buckled up because we’re about to hit something gnarly right now.'”
“It’s about safety. The number one duty of a flight attendant is safety. Second to that is comfort.
“Be kind – just normal, basic respect and kindness. Follow crew members’ instructions if they have them. They’re not out to get you, they want you to be happy.”
She added: “Would you as a flight attendant want to be on a plane with 350 people that hated you for three hours? You paid for a ticket, be comfortable.”
“Also,” she said, “it’s not the flight attendant’s fault if we can’t give you a blanket or pillow. They don’t always have the proper tools to do that. Sometimes an aircraft only has stuff up in the front for first-class, that’s not a crew member’s fault. They hate having to tell you that.”
2. Treat the plane like a public space – not your living room
View this post on Instagram
So this happened… ✈️????????⛔️ #igiveup #flyingfeet • • • #passengershaming #NOPE #instagramaviation #comeflywithme #airplaneetiquette #frequentflyer #crewlife #sassystew #aviation #cabincrew #avgeek #cabincrewlife #flightattendant #flightattendantlife #stewardess #flightattendantproblems #travel #flightattendants #instapassport #aviationgeek #FAlife #airtravel #travelgram #traveltips #pilot #pilotlife #travelling #frequentflier
She added that you also need to “be respectful of the other people in the aircraft,” not only the crew.
“It’s called public transportation. You’re not on NetJets – if you’re on a private jet, you do you, but if you’re on a subway or bus, it’s not the place to start trimming your nose and warts. I’ve seen all of that.”
Shawn Kathleen told INSIDER in 99% of aircraft there’s a changing table in the lavatory, but that hasn’t stopped moms and dads from asking her to dispose of dirty diapers.
“Be aware that you’re on public transportation and you’re not in your living room,” she said. “The airline is not your living room. The ticket you paid for does not entitle you to treat the airline as you wish.”
One of her biggest pet peeves of when people put their feet up on the bulkhead.
“People are like, ‘I can do that,’ but it’s a wall and they break, I’ve seen them detach from the fuselage of the aircraft,” she said.
“Treat it like you would your home. It’s sad you even have to have that conversation with adults.”