A guide to riding airplanes for first timers

 Riding an airplane can be fun and scary at the same time, especially for first time flyers or riders. While riding an aircraft is currently a very safe mode of transportation, there are basically a lot of rules and policies. There are also a lot of things you should know, and sadly, there are quite a number of regular flyers unaware of these details.

We now present this guide for first time flyers or those who will be riding an aircraft for the very first time. Please do through all these first and try to remember them. The information you will get here are important. Moreso, these would somehow make you feel a little less nervous.

Before we go into the details, we are also doing this to prevent unnecessary social media posts or rants.

So here we go, the guide for first time flyers:
  1. Riding an aircraft is very different from taking land transportation. You can never compare riding an aircraft to riding a car, bus, train, or boat. Safety is always paramount in air transportation. During an emergency, an aircraft cannot only pull over unlike a car or bus. It has to slowly descend from a high altitude and locate a near possible airport to execute an emergency landing. Descending may take time.
  2. Your flight crew meaning, the pilots and flight attendants train immensely for this before being released to the line. They go through the toughest of tough training programs. Not even the information you get on Google is nothing compared to what pilots and flight attendants know.
  3. Please read the safety card found in the front seatpocket. It will give you details of what to do during an emergency. Do not disregard this as this may spell your life and the lives of others should an emergency occur.
  4. Safety is paramount in an airline. Please follow each and every safety instructions of your cabin crew such as fastening seat belts, putting window shades up, putting your tray tables up, and seats in upright position. All these are being done for safety reasons and were approved by the airline, aircraft manufacturer, and a country's governing aviation authority. Disobeying safety instructions may get you offloaded the aircraft. Just obey them.
  6. Subject yourself to all security inspections in the airport.
  7. Make sure you follow the baggage weight limits. 
  8. Trust your pilots. They see what no passenger sees, and that is whats infront an the radar. Incidents like missed approaches, go-arounds, aborted take-offs, hard landings, have reasons behind them, and they are all for safety.  
  9. Turbulence is a normal occurence. Just keep your seatbelts on and refrain from going to the lavatory. 
  10. Do not sit on an emergency exit seat or row if you are incapable of opening it during emergencies. If you feel you cannot, please request for a resitting from the cabin crew. Always remember, with great legroom comes a great responsibility too.
  11. The flight crew are the authorities on board the aircraft. These are the flight deck and cabin crew. While they do serve you and they attend to their needs, they also have the authority to have you arrested and offloaded if you fail to disobey them especially their safety instructions, become unruly which disturbes the peace on board.
  12. Your flight attendants are not obligated to lift your luggage unto the overhead compartments. They may however lend you assistance in lifting your luggage if you are a PWD, a pregnant woman, an elderly, or a person with any physical hindrances. But if you are an abled and normal passenger, it is your obligation to lift your own luggage unto the overhead compartments.
  13. Take-off and landing are the most dangerous phases of a flight. Please be sure to follow all safety instructions. To know more about take-off and landing, please do read this.
  14. Be considerate to other passengers. Refrain from putting your feet on the armrest of the seat in front or your knees on the rear of the backrest of the seat infront of you. It may disturb the other passengers in front.
  15. If you notice anything unusual like smoke in the cabin (dark smoke usually), you smell something burning, you notice fire in the engine, or you hear banging sounds, please do report them to the cabin crew immediately. Sometimes though when you board an aircraft especially earning in the morning, you would notice smoke coming front the air outlets. Thats normal.
  16. If you need assistance, just press the call button once except if you are experiencing a medical emergency and you need immediate assistance.
  17. During food service, there is no need to press the call button for the cabin crew to serve your meal. Just wait patiently. They will serve you also.
  18. If you need special meals like Halal food, you may pre-order them during booking.
  19. Do not take pictures or videos of your pilots or cabin crew without their permission or consent. You can get into trouble with the data privacy act.
  20. If you are filling out an immigration form and disembarkation card, please ask your cabin crew for assistance if incase you need help.
  21. Be nice to all airport and airline staff. Please do treat them also with respect and courtesy. During delays, have patience and know your rights. If incase your flight is cancelled, know what to do.
  22. If you have complaints, please do settle them in the proper forum by going to your airlines' website and filing a complaint form. Ranting on Facebook will not bring you justice. It may even fireback. A passenger is now facing criminal charges for taking a picture of a flight attendant without her consent and posting it on social media with a complaint. It made matters worse for the passenger, instead of solving the issue in private.
We also want to remind passengers that as this pandemic rages on, a lot are subject to change as these are situations beyond the airline's control. Please do make sure to observe all safety protocols and to follow all procedures. Please do not also forget to check your airline's Facebook or website for announcements.

Have a smooth and safe flight!

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