Though the number of complaints on Twitter might lead you to believe otherwise, "Flying has never been better." At least according to the industry experts the Outline spoke with, who pointed out that taking to the friendly skies has gotten safer and more on time (arrivals are now punctual about 80% of the time). And while it may not feel like it, it's cheaper, too, at least compared to the early '70s, when price fixing meant a flight from New York to LA was not allowed to cost less than about $1,600 in today's dollars. The Outline's full story works to bust some misconceptions, and Business Insider does something similar. It talks to 80 airline workers—the ones who staff the gates, the planes, the customer service lines—to share the secrets they wish they could share. Here are 5 standouts:
- Know I'm not being rude when I don't give you a free upgrade: One customer service agent explains "the airline computer system tracks everything, and big brother can be watching us"—and doling out a free upgrade improperly can be a fireable offense.
- Don't take off your shoes: It might be tempting to wiggle those toes under the seat, but this isn't your house, and that "water" you're stepping on in the bathroom isn't actually water.
- Don't let those hands wander: If you're tempted to tug at your flight attendant's clothes to get his or her attention as they walk by, just don't. Ever.
- Keep the number 50 in mind: That's how many passengers are generally served by a single flight attendant. We're not forgetting about you, explains one. We're just dealing with minimal staffing.
- Know I have to do what the FAA says: That includes saying specific things. Not following the FAA's rules and regulations could cause a flight attendant to be fined.
Read the full list, which includes a couple of booze-related insights, here
. Or see a viral photo
of a "nightmare" passenger who didn't follow one of the tips above. (Read more air travel