Good morning! I just returned from my local Trader Joe’s to get some groceries and asked a couple of employees what the deal is with the new mask mandate. They both said that customers who are fully vaccinated can shop without a mask. I asked how they verify that? They said that they can’t and take people at their word, which made me laugh. They agreed that anti-maskers will have no problem lying about being vaccinated if proof is not required. Interestingly, out of the 20+ customers in the store, I only saw one maskless person and my cashier said that so far, only a handful of people have not worn their masks. I wore mine and I’m fully vaccinated and I’m pretty certain the other shoppers were too since where I live, vaccination rates are extremely high.
The point is I don’t think the mask mandate on public transportation, including planes, is going to go away anytime soon and I’m okay with that. Actually, I hope they keep it for good or better yet, amend the rules to ensure that people who are coughing or sneezing wear one.
After my flight last week, I was reminded of some of my top pet peeves while flying. What are yours? Leave a comment below:
1. Coughing or Sneezing Without Covering Their Mouths
One of my biggest pet-peeves when I was traveling regularly pre-pandemic was passengers who coughed or sneezed without covering their mouths. I would see it on almost every flight, no matter what class I was in. Actually, the worst offender was a woman on a Virgin Australia flight from LAX to Brisbane years ago in first class. She wouldn’t stop coughing without covering her mouth and she was throwing her dirty tissues in the aisle for the flight attendant to pick up. I spoke to the flight attendant about it, who said that she’d given her a mask but she refused to wear it. So I asked for one and I wore it. If that happened today, the passenger would be arrested and fined wherever they dropped her off.
I wrote about the rude seat mate I had on my LAX to Miami flight on Wednesday (here’s the story) and how he kept taking his mask off. When he started coughing without it, the flight attendant pounced on him.
2. Watching Videos Without Headphones
On my return flight on Thursday, I was in 10A and the passenger all the way on the other side of the plane decided to watch his movie on his phone without earphones Everyone around him was looking at him like, “Is he insane?” but no one said anything. I was just about to get up and say something when the flight attendant told him to put headphones on. And he was pissed.
3. Listening to Music Super Loud
I’ve had countless seatmates listen to music so loud that I could hear the thumping beat from a row or two away … and they had earbuds on. I was guilty of this once and my seatmate told me. I was embarrassed and apologetic, but that’s why now I never play music or listen to movies at full volume and I take my earbuds off my ears to see if they’re emitting noise.
4. Using Speaker Phone
I find people watching videos without earphones the worst offenders or talking on Facetime or speaker phone. It’s like they think they’re the only ones in the world.
5. Loud Talkers
On the same flight, the passenger in 6G was greeted by his friend/wife/girlfriend in the aisle and she sat there speaking really loudly for about twenty minutes in the middle of the flight. Most passengers were sleeping or watching movies so it was not the time and was disturbing the surrounding passengers.
6. Cutting Toenails or Fingernails
Believe it or not, this has happened on more than one occasion.
7. Painting Their Nails
Ding. I just rang the call button and pointed to the passenger. The flight attendant jumped on them because it’s a fire hazard.
8. Flossing their teeth
I kid you not: On a flight from Hong Kong to Bangkok on Cathay Pacific, the lady across the aisle was flossing her teeth. With her HAIR!
9. The Mad Farter
Why do airlines serve gassy foods onboard or in their lounges? I can personally confirm that masks don’t mask the odor, thanks to my rude seatmate the other day.
10. Parents of Out of Control Kids
I have two little kids and I understand they’re not easy to travel with but parents who don’t even attempt to discipline kids drives me nuts.
Sadly, I have a lot of pet peeves when I fly and I usually can’t bite my tongue. So I usually say something to the passenger(s) or, better yet, ask the flight attendant discreetly to deal with it so things don’t escalate. These days, you never know who has a gun or weapon on them or how they will deal with it on the plane or when landing. I don’t need any bounties on my head. Occasionally, the passenger doesn’t realize they’re being loud or inappropriate and appreciate you bringing it to their attention … but that doesn’t happen often. Usually, they get pissed so it’s best to have someone with some authority, like the flight attendant or pilot, deal with it, someone who can make them stop by having them arrested, fined or banned, depending on the offense.
Did I leave something out? What irks you?
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Editorial Note: The editorial content on this page is not provided by any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.