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Don’t be afraid to ask to be moved if necessary

Don’t be afraid to ask to be moved if necessary
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Travel medicine physician, Dr Kunjana Mavunda, recommends her patients take common-sense precautions like wearing multi-layer or surgical masks instead of cloth masks, using sanitising wipes to clean their seat, and applying hand sanitiser. She also tells her patients that if someone around them isn’t observing COVID restrictions (for instance, the guy wearing his mask under his nose, or the one not wearing a mask at all) you should find a flight attendant and ask to be moved.

Don't fall asleep before take-off

Don't fall asleep before take-off
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If you do, it will be harder for you to equalise the pressure in your ears (which you’ll do more quickly if you chew gum or yawn).

If you’re prone to flight-induced headaches, hold off on your snooze until your ears pop.

Don’t forget to stay hydrated

Don’t forget to stay hydrated
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Parched throat mid-flight? Don’t just blame the salty snacks. Airplane cabins are known for their low humidity because the manufactured air in the cabin is made to mimic the highest altitude humans can breathe at, usually between 1800 and 2400 metres, according to the World Health Organization. “For every leg of [a] flight, each flight attendant will try to drink a full 16 ounces of water,” says Ferguson. “That’s the most important. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate.” You might not think of it as an airplane hack, but drinking plenty of water could be the difference between showing up at your destination refreshed and stepping off the plane with a headache.

Find out how to prevent dehydration here.

Don’t try to cut the line when you’re disembarking

Don’t try to cut the line when you’re disembarking
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We get it. Long flights are exhausting and you want to get off the plane as quickly as possible, but cutting the line isn’t something polite people do on airplanes. Besides that, allowing the people in the rows ahead of you to leave first will actually speed up the process for everyone. Gray puts it simply: “Disembark in an orderly way. Everyone is anxious to get off and many other passengers have a tight connection.”

Don’t miss these things polite people don’t do on airplanes.

Don’t stand up immediately when the flight lands

Don’t stand up immediately when the flight lands
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There’s a reason the fasten your seat belt sign remains on after you touch down on the tarmac. “Do not stand up immediately when the plane lands,” says Bayram Annakov, founder and CEO of App in the Air. In fact, he says it could be dangerous since the plane is still in motion. So if you want to avoid injury, just follow the airplane safely rules and wait until your hardworking flight crew tells you it’s safe to stand.

Don’t wait until the last minute to use the bathroom

Don’t wait until the last minute to use the bathroom
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One of the simplest airplane hacks is knowing when to use the bathroom. Says Levine, “Don’t wait for the announcement that the plane has started its initial descent to go to the bathroom unless you want to wait in a long line.” Even if you don’t mind lines, there’s another reason to avoid using the bathroom at the end of the flight. At that point, those toilets have seen a lot of action. As Levine puts it, “Don’t wait until the end of the flight to go to the bathroom if you like clean bathrooms.”

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Don’t close the overhead bins

Don’t close the overhead bins
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While you might think you’re being helpful if you close an airplane bin that appears to be full, it’s up to the flight crew to make that determination. Says Levine, “Travellers coming down the aisle need to know if those bins have any room left for them. Maybe someone else is just looking for a place to stash a bulky coat. Even in a bin full of bags, there may be room for something small or squishy. I’m constantly walking down the aisle popping open bins to see if there is room for my tiny computer case. Unfortunately, almost every flyer closes the overhead bin when they themselves feel they are full.” So resist the urge to be ‘helpful’ when it comes to closing the bins to make sure everyone has a chance to stash their carry-on items.

Don’t make loud phone calls

Don’t make loud phone calls
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Yes, technically you’re allowed to use the phone while boarding a plane, but that doesn’t mean you should. Gray says, “Be respectful when using your phone. The entire plane does not need to hear that urgent last-minute business call.” So whenever possible, opt for a text message or email instead. Gray also adds that if you absolutely must make a call, it’s important to obey the flight attendants when they tell you it’s time to put your phone in airplane mode. And definitely don’t turn your phone on before the plane has touched down. Pilots won’t tell you this, but it can interfere with their readings of how high the plane is.

Don’t recline your seat during meal or snack service

Don’t recline your seat during meal or snack service
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You might not be hungry, but the person sitting behind you might be looking forward to having a bite to eat. Gray says, “Don’t recline your seat during in-flight meal service (mostly for international flights where full meals are served, but also for snack/beverage service on domestic flights).” If you do, the person behind you will have very little space to enjoy their snack or airplane meal.

Don’t argue with the flight attendant

Don’t argue with the flight attendant
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Flying makes some people crabby, especially when something goes wrong. We get it, but don’t take it out on the flight attendant. You might not like wearing a mask or a seat belt, but it’s the flight attendant’s job to enforce the rules, so “no” is on the list of things you shouldn’t say to a flight attendant. Not only is it the wrong thing to do, but as Levine says, “That’s the quickest way to get you booted from the airplane or even the airline altogether.”

These are things to never say to flight attendants.

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