Expedia.com recently published the results of the 2019 Airplane and Hotel Ettiquette Survey, which was conducted on their behalf by Northstar Research Partners, a global strategic research firm. The study discovered the top 5 airline passengers we fear sitting next to, in front of and behind.

Who do you dread sitting next to on a plane?

Knowing this information, could be devastating, if we find out that we ourselves are one of these types of passengers.

Annoying Passenger #1: The Germ Spreader

Nearly half of American respondents (40%) said they’d ask an attendant for a different seat, if they were sat next to someone that appeared to be ill. However, those outside of America said their least favourite passenger was the “Drunk Passenger,” (number 3 on this chart).

For tips on keeping your health in great condition, like carry anti-bacterial wipes on a flight, read our post “How to Survive a Long-Haul Flight.” Also, you can aid your fellow sick passenger by offering a tissue.

Unfortunately, if you are the coughing, sneezing, snot dribbling passenger there isn’t much you can do, other than making sure you sneeze and cough into a tissue and dispensing of it correctly.

Annoying Passenger #2: The Seat Kicker

Last year’s #1 annoying passenger has be knocked off the top spot! This year, 36% of American respondents think the seat kicker is the second most annoying passenger on a plane. It’s safe to say we have all experienced this one! Having someone, whether a child or adult, sat behind you kicking or hitting your seat absolutely sucks, especially if its repetitive.

To avoid this stress, we suggest completing the seat allocation process asap, so that you can guarantee a seat, right at the back of a section or plane. Then, there won’t be anyone behind you. YAY!

If you think that you are a regular seat kicker, try and be mindful of the space around you and consider upgrading to a seat with additional leg room.

Annoying Passenger #3: The Drunk Passenger

There seems to be an increasing amount of news reports about drunken passengers being removed from flight. Therefore, it should not come as a big surprise to learn that 35% of Americans find the “Drunk Passenger” very annoying.

Unlike, suffering with a cold or flu, this trait can easily be avoided. Its pretty simple really, save the holiday celebrations for when you arrive at the hotel. Do you agree?

We’re not saying don’t have a cheeky glass of wine or beer before you board, but for your own health and the mental sanity of your fellow passengers, keep the drinking to a minimum.

Annoying Passenger #4: The Aromatic Passenger

This is a tricky one because an “aromatic passenger” can be someone that is wearing too much perfume and none at all. Which would you prefer? Either way 32% of American find this passenger unbearable to sit with.

Odour can be a very difficult situation to deal in a small confined space. If you’re uncomfortable with telling the person in question, we suggest:

  • Spraying the offender’s seat with a nice faint smelling spray, when they visit the bathroom.
  • Turn on your air ventilation and point it towards them, to blow the smell away from you.
  • Add some vapour rub, under your nose, as this can cover up many a bad smell.

Annoying Passenger Trait #5. The Inattentive Parent

30% of Americans find the “Inattentive Parent” the most annoying passenger on board a flight. Perhaps, this is because a child that is not being properly observed turns into the “Seat Kicking Passenger”.

If you sit next to or close to a child that is being loud, crying or disruptive in some way, do you think it’s the responsibility of the parent to immediately take action or would you have a quick word with the kid?

If you are a parent, we have a few transferable activities to keep your children entertained and happy throughout their airport and plane experience. Check out at “10+ ways to keep your kids happy at the airport” and “Epic Travel Games to Prevent Boredom on Long Journey’s”.

Related: How to Prevent, Minimise and Fight Jet Lag!

More about the 2019 Airplane and Hotel Etiquette Survey

The survey was conducted online from April 12-29, 2019 across North America, Europe, South America and Asia-Pacific using an amalgamated group of best-in-class panels. The study was conducted among 18,237 respondents across 23 countries.