Questions regarding all types of flight capable devices.

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189
votes
3answers
101k views

Why are airline passengers asked to lift up window shades during takeoff and landing?

I have always wondered why the windows shades have to be raised during take off and landing. I can't think of any safety issues by having a closed window.
49
votes
2answers
7k views

Why are there ashtrays in the bathrooms on nonsmoking flights?

Airplane bathroom: Photo by user3306356 Photo by user3306356 Why are there ashtrays in the bathrooms on nonsmoking flights?
47
votes
10answers
11k views

What is the most comfortable way to sleep on a plane?

Some people have the amazing ability to doze off whenever and wherever they are. For the rest of us, sleeping on planes is a constant battle of trying to get comfortable in a cramped space. There are ...
39
votes
2answers
5k views

What can you do about being forced to sit next to a very large passenger?

My mum is up in arms about that fact that she sat next to a (very) obese gentleman on her flight causing sufficient discomfort for her to grab the cabin jumpseat in cruise. The flight was a ...
33
votes
1answer
7k views

Why are some airplane seats numbered “DEK”?

I'm in an Avianca Airbus A320 and the seats are numbered ABC, DEK. Any particular reason why not "DEF"?
28
votes
4answers
5k views

Which airplane is the safest?

Is there some source or research on crash statistics for each type of airplane? For example I want to know the number of crashes, fatalities, and the dates. I want to know which type of airplane has ...
28
votes
1answer
4k views

Strange knob on airplanes?

I have noticed this strange knob on flights typically near the video screen (in this case on the right and is underneath the USB port). Is there a use to this knob or is it just a component which ...
28
votes
4answers
5k views

Why is it uncommon to fill airliners from both ends?

In Norway, it is common at airports with jet bridges (of which there are at least four) for aircraft (largely 737s and A320s) to be boarded and exited through both ends: the passengers with seats in ...
26
votes
8answers
6k views

Can I see fireworks from a passenger airplane (at cruising altitude)?

Next year, I plan to fly from Europe to China around new year's eve. That's why I was asking myself whether it is possible to see fireworks on the ground from an passenger aircraft traveling at ...
24
votes
2answers
4k views

What happens if all toilets become inoperative during a flight?

The other day, I was on a flight and two of the toilets in my zone were blocked with a sign saying "Inoperative", I had to walk down the aisle to the back to use the toilet there. I asked a cabin crew ...
23
votes
1answer
3k views

Why must I lock the door of an aircraft lavatory before the light inside fully brightens?

When I step into an aircraft lavatory, the light is off and there is an indicator light saying to lock the door. Once I do lock the door, the light turns on, and otherwise, the light remains off. Why ...
21
votes
8answers
2k views

Are there any advantages to boarding a flight near the end of the boarding process?

Normally I have frequent flyer status when I board a flight, and I take advantage of it to make sure I'm one of the very first to board, if not the first. That allows me to: Get comfortable, get ...
21
votes
5answers
38k views

Can you bring an empty water bottle with you on the plane?

I know you can't bring bottled water and such with you on the plane. However, is it safe to bring an empty bottle with you to fill up later? Or do you risk losing your possibly expensive/fancy/awesome ...
21
votes
2answers
1k views

How can I get a flight with a supersonic plane?

My dream is to fly with a supersonic plane. Since the Concorde is no longer active, I don't think it is possible to do this with a regular plane. So how can I get onto board of a supersonic plane? ...
21
votes
3answers
6k views

What's the typical microclimate in the aircraft passenger cabin?

When preparing for a commercial jet flight it'd be nice to know how warm my clothes should be so that I don't freeze after sitting for several hours in say +16 degrees Celsius (61 degrees Fahrenheit). ...
20
votes
2answers
339 views

What makes the tap water on board airplanes unsafe to drink?

Every single airplane toilet I've ever been to had the following (or similar) sign: Why is drinking the tap water prohibited? And if drinking the water is prohibited, why is it acceptable to brush ...
19
votes
7answers
2k views

How to fly on the new Boeing 787 Dreamliner?

Sooo, the new Dreamliner has had its inaugural flight. The first flight was from tokyo to hong-kong. In a bit of competitive fun, a friend and I are trying to beat one another to ride it (he beat me ...
19
votes
1answer
2k views

Is it possible to manually release an oxygen mask on airplanes?

I read that a passenger of MH17 was found with an oxygen mask. Is it possible to manually release just a single mask in case someone is having a medical condition like an asthma attack?
18
votes
4answers
9k views

Statistically, is there a safest seat on the plane if it crashes?

So to clarify, there are lots of different planes, so for the sake of argument, there are areas: front left front right front middle forward front, right, middle over the left wing over the right ...
17
votes
1answer
642 views

Where can I board an Airbus 380 using stairs instead of jetbridges?

The international airport of Suriname, doesn't have stairways (yet). Still KLM flies there with a Boeing 747. Making it one of the best places to board a 747. I always have enjoyed walking to the ...
17
votes
1answer
12k views

What do the cabin bells mean on airplanes?

When traveling by air, it's common to hear bells, chimes, tones, whatever-you-call-them over the speaker system. It seems like a single tone is just a passenger pushing their call button. But what do ...
16
votes
2answers
5k views

Can passengers visit the flight attendants' sleeping quarters?

On modern airplanes cabin crew apparently have their own sleeping quarters. See this Youtube Video. Can you peek inside these cabins as a passenger or is that off-limits?
16
votes
2answers
40k views

What is the fastest speed a passenger airplane flies at?

How fast does the world's currently fastest passenger plane fly (cruise speed)? Do any passenger planes fly faster than the speed of sound?
16
votes
1answer
663 views

Environmental impact of ferries

When I travel, I try to limit my environmental impact. I don't want to refrain from travelling completely, but when I do travel, I tend to favour ground-level transportation over air-transportation, ...
15
votes
3answers
6k views

How should I act if I'm assigned to a seat near an emergency exit?

I usually fly in Economy class and try to keep the cost low, but I also like to take a window seat (who doesn't?) if possible. I know airlines only give window seats to adults who can take some ...
15
votes
5answers
3k views

Why is the moon hiding from me?

I've already been on quite a few overnight flights, but so far, I never saw the moon. I saw stars, other planes, city lights, but never the moon. Obviously, the moon should still be there, but somehow ...
14
votes
4answers
6k views

Can two different planes share the same flight number?

There's a daily flight, let's call it AB 1234 which leaves at 11am with a flight duration of more than 13 hours. I noticed that every day, the same flight AB 1234 leaves at 11am. It seems physically ...
14
votes
2answers
1k views

What's the courtesy: wipe off the wash basin?

Commercial airliners often have a sign in the bathroom that reads: As a courtesy to the next passenger may we suggest that you use your towel to wipe off the wash basin What exactly is the ...
14
votes
4answers
751 views

Why do airplanes not use two regular 3.5mm jacks?

I'm flying this Friday again and can't find my two-to-one 3.5 mm jack adapter and I was wondering why did they decided to go this way? One like this: I know why they were using the two prongs, ...
13
votes
5answers
3k views

May an airline change the aircraft from the scheduled one?

In a recent flight between Istanbul and Madrid, the carrier (Turkish Airlines) changed in Istanbul the aircraft that should get to our destination before leaving. They argue that it happened due a ...
13
votes
2answers
3k views

Why are there no 2,3,4,5 tier bunk beds on airplanes?

Lie-flat seats in business class, are a fact of life. Even private cabins and showers are now a fact of life on airplanes. I have traveled on bunk beds in economy style class train cabins for >22 ...
13
votes
6answers
674 views

Riding in a military jet

I remember that there was a possibility that one could take a ride in a military MiG. I think at one point the cost was $15k. Are there any other places that would allow a person to take such a ...
13
votes
2answers
6k views

What is the average & max temperature of an airplane cargo hold?

I want to take some chocolates to offer in my luggage. Chocolates are a bit sensitive to heat, though. What is the average temperature inside a cargo hold? 'Average by' itself can be misleading. What ...
13
votes
3answers
1k views

Why do airlines gate check bags when there is still overhead space?

On a recent flight, an airline employee (either gate agent or flight attendant) who had just stepped out of the plane told my family that there was no more room in the overhead compartments, and we ...
13
votes
1answer
1k views

Is a flight number unique for the schedule, origin and destination?

For example, if we have a flight with a code SU0102, does it always goes from Sheremetyevo to John F. Kennedy or the origin and destination points can change for this flight? The same about schedule: ...
12
votes
1answer
2k views

What's with the Star Alliance / SkyTeam decal planes?

On Saturday I was at YVR airport and saw what I've seen a few times before - a plane painted with a Star Alliance decal. No "Air New Zealand" or "Air Canada" or whatever, JUST Star Alliance. Then ...
11
votes
5answers
878 views

Are there any advantages to selecting the middle seat in an airplane?

It seems to be traveller folklore that the least desirable seats on airplanes are the middle seats (in other words, with three seats directly next to each other, stuck between someone at the window ...
11
votes
3answers
2k views

What are the drawbacks of taking this window/aisle solo seat - 71A on Boeing 777-300ER?

I've got an LA to Hong Kong flight coming up and I've never flown for that long before. Flying on boeing 777-300ER. Btw I'm not asking about window vs aisle, I definitely want an aisle seat. However ...
11
votes
2answers
1k views

Is it possible to fly both the Airbus 380 and the Boeing 787 in one trip?

Would it be possible to compare the user experience in both the airbus 380 and the Boeing 787 in one (return) trip? I don't mind making connecting flights inbetween in other models.
11
votes
2answers
421 views

How to find and compare flights carried out by a specific type of plane?

I'd really like to fly with an Airbus A380. But how do I find and compare the price of flights that are carried out by specific kind of plane? I don't want to fly just anywhere; I plan to go from ...
10
votes
2answers
8k views

What are the best seat places to choose inside an international flight for economy class?

Considering that I can choose any seat on any seat row on a Boeing 777-300ER for an international flight, I have most of 400 seat places to choose from the forefront to the last row of this airplane. ...
10
votes
1answer
922 views

Why do emergency oxygen systems on passenger planes have a bag that doesn't inflate?

Anyone who flies knows by heart the fact that, although oxygen is flowing, the bag may not inflate. So what purpose does the "bag" serve?
10
votes
1answer
594 views

Avoiding crew fatigue on empty leg flights

An empty leg is a private jet flight where there are no passengers on-board. It's a one way return trip home for private jet charter or other luxury jets, similar to how rental cars must be driven ...
10
votes
1answer
1k views

Can I rent a small plane (Cessna) in Europe?

A friend of mine has a commercial pilot license, he was able to rent small planes in the US and fly it from one state to another. He told me a lot of fun stories and I am kinda excited to do the same ...
9
votes
6answers
5k views

Is there room for a rollaboard in a CRJ-200 overhead bin?

I've got a flight coming up on a CRJ-200. I know this is a smaller plane — is there room in the overhead bin for a rollaboard? I usually prefer to fly with carry-on luggage, even paying the upgrade so ...
9
votes
1answer
2k views

Is it safe to use earbuds in an airplane?

I like using my earbuds when in the airplane, since they provide better sound insulation than the standard economy headphones, but I've been told (I couldn't find any information confirming it though) ...
8
votes
1answer
93 views

Is there such a thing as individual tourism with water plane?

Seeing many water plane regular lines operated near Vancouver I was wondering if there is a thing like touring with water planes. What I have in mind is renting a water plane with friends or family ...
7
votes
3answers
336 views

How to identify a flight based on airport, time and maybe airline?

Today I cycled through Zurich and also came across the airport. I used the chance and made some pictures of aircraft taking off. Since I'm very interested in the type of aircraft as well as the ...
7
votes
1answer
1k views

Airplane seat dimension regulations: are there any?

Are there any regulations, either in US or Europe, regarding minimum dimensions for airplane seats, i.e. leg space, horizontal distance, etc.? I ask this also in relation to some (often low cost) ...
7
votes
2answers
122 views

Boeing 787 Dreamliner Routes to Oceania?

I've looked into pre-orders for the 787 Dreamliner before, but so many of them are delayed or not active or not on scheduled routes, I thought I'd ask here. United was meant to have a route from ...