Questions tagged [air-travel]

A form of travel in vehicles such as airplanes, helicopters, air balloons and so on.

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246 votes
3 answers
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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.
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151 votes
11 answers
54k views

Took airline plane blanket by accident; didn't realize it was forbidden. What should I do?

I'm very new to traveling in general. When I flew on a long flight, the airline gave us blankets and pillows. I, having no idea that I was supposed to leave the blanket behind, took it as I collected ...
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140 votes
21 answers
29k views

How can I deal with people asking to switch seats with me on a plane?

I'm sixteen years old, and I have mild claustrophobia so I always travel in the aisle seat. However, I'm constantly asked (not politely) by others to change seats with them. Since I usually travel ...
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138 votes
3 answers
26k views

Canadian citizen, on US no-fly list. What can I do in order to be allowed on flights which go through US airspace?

My father and I, both Canadian citizens, were denied to board a direct Turkish Airlines flight from Istanbul to Toronto non-stop without any prior warning or information. Literally, at the gate, we ...
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128 votes
7 answers
69k views

Flight tickets: buy two weeks before even during holiday seasons?

There is a common story that airline ticket prices rise significantly if you buy them less than two weeks before departure. And that any time before that will yield standard prices. Is that advice ...
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128 votes
4 answers
25k views

Airline reservations require name to exactly match passport, but won't allow entering name that way

My sister's name on her passport is 25 characters not including spaces: 5 letters for her given name, 7 letters for her middle name, and 13 letters, including a hyphen, for her last name. (It's NOT a ...
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  • 1,128
119 votes
13 answers
20k views

Prohibited item forgotten in hand luggage: what to do with it?

I guess it happens quite frequently: you have already checked in, and at the security check you realize that you have in your backpack your grandmother's Klingon bat'leth blade, an item that has been ...
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116 votes
9 answers
26k views

When and why do people clap/applaud after a plane lands?

On a recent flight to Romania, the whole flight erupted with applause once we'd landed. This wasn't a "difficult" flight - no turbulence, delays, or hijackings. Just a bog standard flight. On the ...
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112 votes
10 answers
29k views

How to avoid toddlers on a long-distance plane flight?

I have recently taken a London - San Francisco (12 hour) flight, with a toddler in the seat directly behind me. His parents actively encouraged the kid to speak out in that typical proto-speech, while ...
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112 votes
8 answers
19k views

Norwegian refuses EU delay (4.7 hours) compensation because it turned out there was nothing wrong with the aircraft

My flight from Oslo to Rome was delayed by 4 hours and 40 minutes. I submitted a request to Norwegian Air Shuttle requesting a compensation of 400 Euros under EU 261/2004. Their reasoning for why ...
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112 votes
11 answers
29k views

Can I accidentally miss the in-flight food?

I was wondering what will happen if I was wearing headphones or asleep (or both) and I missed the in-flight food? I don't want to miss it, but I know when I get lost in my music or fall asleep I ...
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112 votes
11 answers
50k views

How can I do a "broad" search for flights?

Several airline and trip planning sites will allow you to check "I am flexible with my dates" or a similar option. Is there any way to also search more broadly for location? For example, if you ...
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105 votes
8 answers
58k views

How to convince airport security that I am not dangerous when having metallic parts in my body?

I had an operation some time ago and now I have small screws in my shoulder which will not be removed anymore. When I decided to fly for vacation, I supposed that these will may bring me into trouble ...
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  • 969
97 votes
1 answer
10k views

Did I opt out of compensation by accepting meal vouchers?

Today/yesterday, I had a multi-leg flight going IAD-CPH-AMS (Washington Dulles International Airport - Copenhagen Airport - amsterdam Airport Schiphol). I had a connection time of one hour in CPH, ...
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93 votes
9 answers
20k views

Why do people on airplanes often have tomato juice as a drink?

Tomato juice seems to be a favorite drink for many travelers to have on board an airplane. I've seen this on almost every flight I've been on, but I have never noticed this same trend at ground-level. ...
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  • 1,703
89 votes
8 answers
19k views

Why are airlines against the transferring of tickets to other persons?

Airlines usually either don't allow the transferring of tickets to another person after they've been purchased, or they do it at an extremely inflated price. What is the reason for doing this? One ...
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88 votes
9 answers
6k views

How can I avoid or minimize jet lag on flights?

From my personal anecdotal experience, I've found it worse when travelling east around the globe. I also tend to stay awake most if not all of the flight, so sleeping time doesn't tend to matter as ...
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86 votes
13 answers
19k views

Why is onboard/inflight shopping still a thing?

There's an inflight shopping magazine in the pocket of the seat in front of you - that no one reads. The crew come through with a trolley of merchandise - that nobody buys. There are special offers ...
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  • 4,845
86 votes
2 answers
12k views

Do flight attendants prefer I press the button or walk to the back? (Long-haul flights)

I fly Abu Dhabi - Amsterdam - Portland, OR and back frequently. Each leg is about 8 to 10 hours. For most people, it is their one 'long flight,' and are sleeping, but for me, because I have two of ...
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  • 3,102
82 votes
5 answers
55k views

Can I fly with a gold bar?

Can I fly with a Good Delivery gold bar? I'll have the certificate that I have been given with it. I have looked on Google and found nothing that suggests it's a prohibited item on an aircraft. It's ...
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80 votes
13 answers
31k views

Asking same flight customers if they would agree to put my knife in their checked luggage

Issue When flying with only a carry-on allowed, I am often bothered by not being allowed to carry a small knife that I will need at my destination (backpacking trips). So far, every time I faced this ...
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80 votes
10 answers
228k views

How big is "too big" for an airline seat? At what point will you be required to buy two tickets?

As I said in another question, I'm bringing my parents to visit me here in Sweden next year. My mother is around 280-300 pounds and 5'6" (130-135kg, 1.67m). I am concerned that she might be asked at ...
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78 votes
11 answers
19k views

Why do flight attendants say in safety instructions that you should put on your own mask before helping others?

I have taken several flights from Emirates, FlyDubai and Saudi Airlines. Why is it announced to put your own mask on before helping others with their mask. I wouldn't do it if I am travelling with my ...
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78 votes
7 answers
18k views

How to book a flight if my passport doesn't state my gender?

I am asking on behalf of my friend. My friend doesn't have a gender (in other words they are gender-neutral) and on their new passport their gender is represented as X (indeterminate/unspecified). ...
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74 votes
5 answers
71k views

What is the purpose of check-in before flying?

A few years ago, to do the check in, we would go to the airport and do it directly at the counter. I always thought the function of the check-in for the airline company would be to tell the company "...
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  • 30.3k
73 votes
15 answers
15k views

How do I minimise waste on a flight?

I'll be taking several long-haul flights over the next month. From previous experience I know I'll probably be getting a fair bit of single-use plastic. I am keen on minimising waste, particularly ...
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  • 1,569
72 votes
6 answers
12k views

Why do airlines offer more varieties of special-request meals than they actually provide?

I am a lacto-ovo vegetarian with an annoying tendency to forget to book vegetarian meals when I go flying. When I forget to book ahead, I always ask if they happen to have an extra veg*n meal, but ...
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70 votes
3 answers
17k views

I've been warned to leave the US within 10 days as I will "overstay" my visa, but I have legally left the country by plane months ago. What can I do?

So this year I went to Florida with my family for 2 weeks. We were all tourists and we go to the US almost every year and have no administrative problems usually. This time, however, I recently ...
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  • 579
69 votes
2 answers
12k views

What happens when a town is under quarantine and my visa expires

A friend of mine is currently in Wuhan, China, as the city is placed under quarantine. He is a European citizen and had thus made a tourist visa to visit the family of his wife for the Lunar new year,...
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69 votes
5 answers
37k views

Are there any flights which permits a Sikh to carry a kirpan?

I am a religious Sikh from Jalandhar, India. I have not travelled outside of the country for a single time so far. However, my family is pestering me to take them for a jolly holiday trip to a ...
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  • 707
67 votes
7 answers
33k views

What to do if drugs / a bomb are planted in your travel bag?

So the scene: You're flying from Bogota, Colombia to New York, USA. You arrive, pick up your bag from the carousel, and figure you'll stuff your netbook you used on the flight into your bag now ...
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  • 157k
67 votes
2 answers
318k views

Do I need a US visa to transit (or layover) through an American airport?

In Europe usually you don't need to go through immigration to change planes (unless you are entering/exiting Schengen). Is it the case in the US as well? May I catch a connecting flight on one of the ...
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66 votes
4 answers
8k views

What rules govern forced removal from flights (due to overbooking)?

I was recently surprised to see a man roughly and forcibly physically removed from an overbooked flight by three police officers because his flight was overbooked. He was reportedly a doctor who ...
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  • 3,208
65 votes
4 answers
16k views

Can I refuse to choose seats with additional cost at check-in time?

Related to this question, but in my case I actually am in the situation where all normal seats are occupied. This is what happens here: the online check-in system is trying to force me to choose ...
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65 votes
2 answers
10k views

What happens if you have a medical emergency after deplaning but before passing passport control?

Let's say you are a visa national flying into a UK airport with a valid entry clearance. Between exiting the airplane and passing through passport control you have a medical emergency that requires ...
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64 votes
9 answers
11k views

When boarding a full plane, how can I guarantee that I can keep my handheld baggage with me?

Sometimes the overhead bins get full and the flight attendants will start collecting bags to put in with the rest of the luggage, but I keep insulin (diabetic) in my handheld bag, as I may need it ...
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64 votes
9 answers
124k views

Do you have to take the second leg of a domestic flight?

Say I want to book a flight from Fort Lauderdale to Chicago. Say the airline also flies to St. Louis from Fort Launderdale but has a connecting flight through Chicago. If I book that flights from ...
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  • 1,308
63 votes
7 answers
34k views

Why are one-way plane tickets more expensive than return tickets?

It seems like one-way tickets are always more expensive than buying round-trip. But what if I have two destinations? For example I would like to go on the following itinerary this March: London -->...
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  • 1,358
63 votes
6 answers
13k views

Refused entry into Schengen after Ryanair checked passport. Now the airline wants me to pay a fine. What are my options?

I was travelling from London to Kaunas (Lithuania) and was refused entry because I did not have a biometric passport, even though a Ryanair officer at the gate before boarding checked my passport, ...
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  • 711
61 votes
7 answers
24k views

Are there any child-free flight options?

I was wondering whether there are any flights for people who can't stand children or don't want to be around them. I'm sure there is a demand. By child-free, I mean child-free flights, child-free ...
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  • 785
60 votes
6 answers
62k views

I am Chinese. Which name is my surname and which is my last name, for a flight booking?

My name is Minnie Wong Qin Qing. If I put Wong as my surname, and the others as my last name, finally the full name will be: Minnie Qin Qing Wong. So what can I do?
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60 votes
14 answers
8k views

What techniques, tricks or otherwise have you used to get upgrades on flights?

I've travelled a lot. Living in New Zealand or the UK means anywhere is likely a flight, but I've always flown economy. Twice between LA and Auckland I managed to get the exit row after talking ...
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  • 157k
60 votes
7 answers
28k views

What commercial flight route requires the most (minimum possible) stops/layovers from A to B?

For travel hacking (and interest) value, colleagues and I have been trying to work out which routes worldwide might have the highest number of required legs. That is, for a one-way flight from ...
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  • 157k
60 votes
4 answers
15k views

Can I stay in the airplane toilet during landing?

For safety purposes all airlines make you go back to your seat when you are in the toilet just before landing. But, what if you really had to go and don't come out even after persistent knocking. ...
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  • 3,276
60 votes
6 answers
341k views

Are battery packs allowed in hand luggage?

When flying, are you allowed to bring battery packs / power banks? I'd like to bring my ACC 10400mAh Power Bank on several flights.
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  • 3,096
60 votes
1 answer
6k views

Which airlines might I have trouble taking, being an Israeli?

I'm an Israeli expat living in Europe (proper residence etc. but no citizenship/passport). I intend to travel from Europe to India, and I'm considering using an airline based in a state without ...
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  • 4,221
59 votes
10 answers
17k views

Why is it sometimes cheaper to fly within the UK than taking the train?

We are planning to travel to Scotland from Manchester and after looking at the prices for both flights and trains. It's cheaper to fly there than taking a train. I've also noticed the same thing when ...
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  • 1,368
59 votes
3 answers
10k views

easyJet won't refund because it says 'no-show' but they denied boarding

I'm trying to help a friend of mine. He was supposed to travel from Berlin to Amsterdam with Easyjet along with 3 other people. At the time of boarding, my friend and one of his companions (along with ...
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58 votes
6 answers
9k views

How to tell if your flight has an air-bridge or stairs?

A colleague has a family member who struggles with the stairs, and wouldn't be able to climb (injury). They've spotted a trip to Tasmania on Jetstar from Sydney, but are wondering if the planes have ...
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  • 157k
58 votes
2 answers
15k views

What is shown at an airport arrival board if a flight is missing or has crashed?

What is shown at an airport arrival board if a flight is missing or has crashed? Would they actually say crashed/lost, or simply something like delayed.
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