A Flight Attendant Answers Your Burning Travel and Etiquette Questions2 min read
For the reverse route, which is usually a daytime flight, I force myself to stay awake so I’ll sleep as soon as I get home. A short nap on a long flight won’t hurt though, and if your flight is longer than 12 hours, sleep as long as you can.
If traveling alone, should a passenger with an “invisible” medical condition like diabetes inform a flight attendant in case there is a problem during the flight?
If you are solo and aren’t wearing a medical alert bracelet, please let us know. Knowing what could be wrong helps us respond to your needs correctly, faster. For instance, if you are hyperglycemic (high blood sugar), which has similar symptoms to intoxication, we can quickly get you medical attention if we already know you are diabetic and not drunk.
Once, a passenger told me he has frequent seizures and how I should handle them. It was not a full flight, so I was able to move him to the last row by himself, close to my galley. He did actually have several small seizures on the flight, but I was right there and made sure he was safe the whole time.
On the last few flights I took, my rude neighbor in the middle seat used both armrests, spread their legs and was constantly touching me and elbowing me. What’s the middle-seat etiquette? Is it truly a free-for-all?
Manspreading is not acceptable in any seat. That said, the middle seat is the dreaded torture device of flying. So, the unwritten rule is that the middle seat gets both armrests. The aisle and window each get their own armrest and room to lean over a little.
To handle someone invading your space, ask them nicely. Often, the person doesn’t even realize they are being rude. Try a joke, like, “they keep making these seats smaller and smaller.” That acknowledges your problem is with the seat, not the person, and that you are both in this together. As long as you feel safe, try handling it yourself before getting the flight attendant involved.
If the person is quite tall and is completely folded in their seat with nowhere to go, you could offer to trade seats. We all hate the middle, but it might be more comfortable for both of you over the flight.
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