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204

I will answer this with a very long answer, since aviation safety is my day to day job. The window shade opening is a part of a long process to prepare the cabin for sudden (unexpected) emergencies. Why is that? Well, cabin crew have only 90 seconds to evacuate all passengers in case of emergencies. The process of evacuation itself should not take more than ...


120

TL;DR: If you know you're going, and there's a fare you can afford, book it. Waiting will almost never save you money, and never enough to offset paying double or triple the cheapo fare because you waited too long. Detailed explanation, with pictures: The problem is that there is no single "the price" that goes up and down. On any given flight you can buy ...


69

Consider this: why is the food so bad at large banquets and weddings? (Ever hear the phrase "rubber chicken" to describe an industry awards banquet?) why is the food so bad in prison? why is the food so bad in a school cafeteria? why is the food so bad at a university residence? In all of these cases, just as on the airplane: a very large quantity of ...


67

According to some studies, tomato juice, and many other foods, actually taste different (better in the case of tomato juice) under the low pressure conditions in an airplane than they do at home.


67

One of the steps of preparing the cabin for landing is checking that all passengers are seated and buckled up, and no passengers are in the toilet and toilets are locked (it can be [un]locked from outside). The reasons behind checking the toilets for passengers during landing and takeoffs are related to safety and security. The safety related reasons are ...


65

When I flew from Vienna to Amsterdam and back, my fears were confirmed: The security staff inspected me very precise, and I had to explain them my story. Thank god I have some scars left so they believed me! It is not a problem. There are many, many people with metal implants and the standard procedure is simply explaining your condition after an ...


44

It's hard to understand why this can be the case without some background in how airline fares work, so lets start with a bit of background... For each route, airlines will publish a number of different fares, each with a distinct "fare code" - normally with weird names like "TANRKL", "YSJWNN" or "X34Q". Corresponding to these fare codes are "fare rules" ...


43

They have the holes because of the machines that made them (check DavidG's answer), anyway this ice cubes with holes are better for planes for a few reasons: Because they are lighter (believe it or not, every gram in the aviation business counts) They cool things faster due to larger area of contact with the liquid They also will allow more liquid to be ...


41

For whatever reason the subject comes up in context of the Bill introduced in New Zealand with respect to Maori. In addition to that the article also has specific information regading kirpan: The Sikh Centre brought to the select committee the need to be sensitive to the diverse cultures and beliefs of individuals passing through airport control to ...


39

I find several things help, some are physical or physiological while others are purely mental: I find it easier to adjust to "it's morning, get up now!" - as you get when you fly east - if I get light on my face as soon as possible. On the plane, open your shade, eat the "breakfast" they give you, and do the things you do in the morning. In a hotel, get ...


37

According to the 1961 Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness, Article 3: For the purpose of assigning nationality, birth on a ship or aircraft shall amount to birth in the territory of the State that gives its flag to that ship or aircraft. However, only about 40 nations (not including the USA) have ratified this convention - and what ...


37

It seems that is not that airlines serving you bad food, it is more your perception on the food that plays tricks with your mind. Only today the Atlantic published a nice article on this topic with the appropriate title "Why Airplane Food Is So Bad". It boils down to pressurised cabins and economics of the masses. Some quotes from this article: ...


36

Here are a few tips from the point of view of a cabin crew member: Always tell the cabin crew. No cabin crew member would want a passenger to vomit on the seat or floor. They will help you and even let you use the toilet in the worst times (shortly after take off or shortly before landing). Vomiting in the toilet is much easier and more comfortable - it is ...


36

I used to drink tomato juice religiously on airplanes and never at home. As I started to fly more, I stopped ordering it but I still do occasionally for nostalgia. The reasons are: it is more filling and closer to food than other juices, especially with a little salt and pepper it's more expensive than pop or other drinks, which both makes you feel like ...


35

All modern aircraft have to go through incredibly stringent safety checks and are essentially equally safe. Accidents are so rare that any apparent differences in aircraft safety are mostly meaningless statistical anomalies. Airfleets.net has a chart of accidents per aircraft type, but it's not easy to make any practical conclusions about it. For example, ...


35

Three reasons for this: The main reason: Passenger comfort. If the light continuously remains on, then if a passenger opens the door of the lavatory when the cabin lights are off, it will fill the cabin with unwanted light. This can be avoided by making sure that the door is closed before turning on the light. Aircraft lavatory doors and door frames are ...


34

Unlike many other countries, US airport do not have any form on physical immigration controls when you are departing the country on an international flight. In fact, in most airports there isn't even a concept of an "International" terminal/gate, with the same gates frequently being used for international flights and domestic flights. As a result of this ...


34

In my experience, having a positive detection at the swab testing station is not a problem. The testing machines only give an indication of possible explosive residue, and are not conclusive. Several times I have had a positive detection at the swab test station (not actually carrying or handling any explosives). If they get a positive test, they may ask ...


32

Probably not the answer you were hoping for, but I think the best way to get upgraded is to fly a lot with the airline. Generally when the flight's overbooked in one class, and they're trying to pick which person to upgrade, frequent flyer status is the first metric they use. The higher your status, the higher up the list you go! Having a high status with a ...


31

This is prohibited for safety reasons. Each row has one extra oxygen mask (there are exceptions, some rows have no extra masks and they will be marked somehow). If more than one infant is seated in a parent's lap and the oxygen masks were to be used one of the row occupants will have no oxygen mask to use. Usually the reservation system/agents will avoid ...


30

Yes, you can use http://matrix.itasoftware.com - just enter a destination, say LAX, click "Nearby" and pick airports (up to 300mi away I think). However, that's not super interesting as most of those airports are small regional/county airports that don't get mainline carrier service, so you can just enter destination airports (there aren't that many in CA). ...


30

This ploy is known as "hidden-city ticketing", and you should find plenty written about it if you search for that term. For example, Nate Silver wrote an article about it; that caused some controversy, and there was a followup on the ethics of the practice.


30

In the retail drinks trade (pubs, bars etc), machines that make these hollow ice cubes are often* used where there is not much room to store large quantities of ready-produced ice (such as in a much larger machine). The larger surface area to volume ratio means fresh ice cubes can be made more efficiently and quickly to meet demand - by the time one batch is ...


29

No, you can't. I know a lot about planes and their systems and I can tell you for sure, some tissues can block the toilet. I am sure your butt is a bit heavier and bigger than some tissues. Also, some planes have a manual handle to control the flush in case it is stuck open. It happens sometime and the only bad side is not sucking people's butts, but the ...


28

From Wikipedia (same article as your other question): Westray - Papa Westray (Loganair) flight number: LOG 313, 2.7km (1.7 miles) 02 min, aircraft: Britten-Norman Islander, first flight - 3 February 2004 It is obvious from that list that the best option is try searching near the islands. Second place is for the LI 507 (from St. ...


28

It varies a little depending on the type of plane, but in general during flight over the wings, or slightly forward of the wings gives the least amount of movement - especially for planes where the engines are mounted on the wings (rather than on/near the tail). Take-off/landing is a little different. For take-off there's not a lot of difference - the nose ...


28

The cabin pressure is not constant - it's allowed to drop as the plane ascends, within safe levels (typically down to the pressure one would find at between 1500 and 2000 meters of altitude). The reason for this is that a pressure difference between inside and outside puts stress on the fuselage. Reducing the maximum difference allows the fuselage to be ...


28

Needs of a domestic flight: check in check luggage go through security board plane Additional needs of an international flight: valid passport check at check-in visa check at check-in to ensure you have the rights to enter the destination country (not every country) exit passport control - outbound stamp, check (not every country) departure forms need ...


27

As a developer of some search engine for the Amadeus (one of the major companies who provides the air-tickets search), I can say: Yes, you can, but you should find the site working with Amadeus and provides such option to the search. This option is not as popular as flexible-dates-feature, but you still can try to search such sites. I'll do my best to find ...


27

The reason why airlines implement a policy of asking overweight people to get two seats is an air safety issue of whether they can be strapped in properly. The guideline used for this is whether a passenger can fit between the armrests. If a passenger requires two seats, then the policy differs from airline-to-airline if/what the passenger should be charged ...



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