One day, an old man, a kid, and a wealthy businessman boarded an airliner. An emergency was declared on the plane when a sudden storm started midway. However, there were just two parachutes left on the aircraft.
The businessman said, "I have to live for the welfare of people." So he grabbed a parachute and jumped.
The old man said to the kid, "I will die in a few days anyway; you should take the other parachute."
"There are still two parachutes, Grandpa," the kid said. "I just can't seem to locate my schoolbag!" and mockery is flickering in your eyes.
It's quite an old joke. You are thinking to yourself, such a silly incident ever happens? It does not happen, as planes have a fixed number of parachutes for passengers. So there's no need to worry. No egotistical person will show up to steal your belongings if this unfortunate situation ever occurs.
Although flight attendants can guarantee that there will be parachutes on board, they cannot guarantee that you won't encounter troublemakers and cunning passengers like the wealthy man in the joke. Because people are strange and don't hesitate to act strangely while flying in an aeroplane.
As a result, numerous problems emerge. The entire trip becomes a nightmare when other passengers don't behave with the common decency one would expect from a fellow passenger. So you need to be familiar with basic flying etiquette beforehand to avoid becoming an eyesore to other people.
So, ladies and gentlemen, let's start our journey into the land of courtesies and etiquette. Please turn off and store all portable electronic devices until you have finished reading the article because you will learn about proper flying behaviour during this journey. As we prepare to land at our estimated destination, ensure your seat back is straight, your learning mode is on, and your seat belt is fastened.
Be a good neighbour
Mahmuda Rahman, the managing director of Oriental Magpie Travel Agency, has worked with many people and flown on various airlines throughout her 22-year career.
"Once I was travelling to Bangkok," she recalled. "The journey started well, but trouble struck when the food was served. The traveller next to me began eating with his hands while seated in Padmasana with his legs on the seat. His legs appeared to touch me every time he moved. After that, I spent the rest of the trip feeling quite upset."
You might think that after you pay for the seat, you can choose to sit in it however you want. But you must also remember that you have no right to bother anyone in the seat next to you besides your family. Touching strangers and putting your legs on the seat in front of them are also examples of showing disrespect. This could result in a huge mess.
One such incident happened on the national flag carrier's London-bound flight on May 25, 2022, when a passenger's leg contacted another passenger seated in the adjacent row. And later, their argument over this turned into a scuffle. So being a friendly neighbour comes before being a good passenger. Do not act inappropriately with the person sitting next to you.
Don't turn a blind eye to your child's actions
Children are the keepers of innocence. Aren't they? But often, they become the reason for others' headaches. Not all, but some kids start bothering the passengers as soon as they board the plane. These children's parents generally avoid their misbehaviour. But if you travel with a child on a plane, you will be equally responsible for all the mischief that child causes. It's your responsibility to keep your child under your care throughout the flight.
Overhead storages are not personal cabinets
Sharing overhead space evenly with other passengers is another example of good manners. We are aware that travellers are only permitted to bring a limited amount of hand luggage on every domestic and international trip, which is often kept in the overhead storage.
But many people begin to use this storage area as their personal cabinet and fill it entirely with their goods, making it impossible for other passengers to store their items. This storage has separate space allocated for each seated passenger, so don't hog the overhead storage with your extra carry-ons.
No fight on flight
In early 2023, a video of a Biman Bangladesh Airlines Boeing 777 flight went viral on social media. It was seen that a conversation between two passengers turned into a fight. Nevertheless, it remains unknown what went wrong. On the other hand, there's no doubt that the other passengers on the flight felt uneasy and irritated.
Such an environment can instil fear among children. Neither of which is desirable on a long flight. Also, legal action is taken against those who are responsible for causing such a scuffle. In the earlier-mentioned incident of 2022, passengers involved in the scuffle were detained by the respective authorities at Heathrow Airport, and legal action was taken against them. Let's not bring hell into the skies.
Be considerate and know the armrest rule
It is polite to leave two armrests on both sides for the person seated in the middle since the window seat passenger gets the most lucrative seat in the plane and the aisle seat passenger receives easy movement on one side. Because the unlucky middle-seaters are not even able to enjoy the view outside or quick access to the lavatory. So let the passenger in the middle at least use the armrests!
Check your alcohol intake
It's no longer a secret that alcohol is served on international flights, but if it's your first time, don't go overboard. Nobody wants a drunk clown in the middle of a long haul. You wished to fly high rather than be high, didn't you?
Finally, but most importantly
In our country, there is a tendency among many passengers to treat planes like local buses. Both domestic and international flights are littered around the seats. Offences such as spoiling the provided blanket or removing the new seat cover are not characteristic of a modest passenger.
Some images circulating on social media for the past few days show that the seat handles of the Bangladesh Biman Dream Liner 787-900 aircraft bound for Dhaka to Toronto are broken, the pillows are ripped and thrown away, and the TV screen is half-hung.
Such incidents can occur if passengers rush to leave the plane or operate the equipment carelessly. Not only does this behaviour squander money, but it also gives the outside world a wrong impression of the nation's people. Netizens are venting their anger on social media through various posts and comments.
Md Rafiuzzaman Sifat, a worried passenger who frequently takes flights, said, "The majority of people that come from Dhaka to Torrento are socially upper middle class, middle class, or highly educated people who are currently doing activities that we would not normally consider them to be doing. This practice was once thought to be limited to passengers (mainly labourers) flying to the Middle East, but it is now increasingly typical on all flights."
"Money and formal education are not the issues; rather, a lack of sufficient moral and behavioural education has now become a major national concern," he remarked.
It is strange to imagine that Bengalis, known worldwide for being friendly, kind, and peace-loving individuals, act contrary to their nature when they board a plane. Civil behaviour is desirable everywhere. At the end of the day, it all comes down to common sense and leaving a good passenger image on the flights we take; all we need is to apply some common sense and basic politeness.