"" Lulu's Sandbar: Travel Rules
Welcome to my sand bar - trying to push past my boundaries and serve up humorous observations on life...

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Travel Rules

And that title doesn't have an exclamation point after it.  I'm not saying, "Travel RULES!!!"   I'm actually offering up some helpful observations and tips as we head into the traditional vacation season.  If you fly for work or fun this season, here are some road warrior handy hints (said with a bright shiny snarky talk show hostess smile and tone after just having gotten off a plane)......

Be curious!  When everyone is standing in a loooong line to check in at the airport and there are...oh...I don't know - eight open kiosks available with a big sign that says "Step up here to check your bags and get your boarding pass" - you might want to be curious and check it out! Seriously, I know that you may not have flown since 1970 and you're proclaiming loudly to your wife that you KNOW WHAT YOU'RE DOING and YOU HAVE TO WAIT UNTIL THE GIRL CALLS US OVER and THOSE MACHINES ARE FOR COMPUTER PEOPLE but trust me, a curious nature will help in this situation!

This curiosity can carry over to the security line as well!  There are big signs posted telling you what to do and what to put into the bins and where you should line up.  Read and ask questions if you're not sure.  Also, when the TSA tells you to take your shoes and your belt off and put them in the bin, don't get mad and proclaim WHAT'S THE MATTER and WHAT - YOU THINK I'M A TERRORIST? and WHY DO I HAVE TO DO THAT - the TSAs do not care that you may not have done this before and that you are just a grandparent trying to get to your granddaughter's graduation and they WILL make you go through the strip search.

Ah yes.  The TSAs.  Their job is to make sure that we are all safe from those who would do us harm and for the most part, they are a professional lot.  HOWEVER - you there, Mr. Big Guy Couldn't Run Down the Donut Vendor Much Less a Terrorist..... - Seriously?  Why are you so deliberately brusque with that lady in the wheelchair who can't hear or walk very well??  Is this how you treat your parents or grandparents?  Maybe I'm wrong, but I can't find any stats where Aunt Bee hid explosives in her updo and took out a 747.  A little more kindness and a little less control freakiness would go a long way!

Next - a little fashion tip.  Pajamas, men's tank tops, Bill Clinton's running shorts - all Glamour Don'ts.  I beg you - don't.  And as you never know how long you might be delayed on the plane, please don't forget to shower before you leave home - think of the person squashed into the seat next to you for four stinky hours.

Unless I make eye contact and ask you to sit next to me and tell me about your ex-husband's dog-grooming tax issues, please don't.

Don't drink yourself silly in the airport and then sit in the exit row.  Remember when being the safety monitor in grade school was an honor and act accordingly.

Don't push your seat back as far as it can go and into my lap - I'm already married.

Don't put your sweater into the overhead bin, shut the bin door, and then get mad when a fellow passenger attempts to put a computer bag in the same bin.  Your sweater will survive, I promise.  

But -Mr. Business Man with the oh-so-important computer bag / carry-on luggage?  We ALL need to use the space underneath the seat -  so don't crush that violin case / wedding dress / military dress uniform that's been carefully placed on top of all the other luggage with your second bag.  Suck it up and put it under the seat.

Also, don't attempt to jam your oversized bag into the bin, slam the door on it 10 times, swear, give up, throw yourself into your seat angrily and leave it to the flight attendant to find a way to make it fit.    

Flight attendants - you chose this job.  Please don't take your frustration out on us, the paying customers.  Unless we're drunk/self-important/threatening stupid jerks.  Then, have at it.

And you, young strong businessboy guy - when you see grandma or grandpa struggling to get their bag into the overhead bin, give them a hand.  Pay it forward a bit.

Thank the attendants and the pilots.  Every time.  Like anesthesiologists, they have jobs that consist of long periods of routine punctuated by extreme MOMENTS OF PANIC - and we need to appreciate their cool under pressure.

Venting lecture over.  Peace out.


The Flying Pinto said...

Hey! Just wanted to say thanks for helping make my job easier: ) I especially like the glamour don'ts! Great observations!!

Joanna Jenkins said...

i don't know why people arrive at an airport and suddenly get rude and stupid. Maybe airports should announce your rules over the loud speaker every hour on the hour to give the rest of us travelers a break! And while they're at it, they can send the pajama clad idiots home to change too :-)
Love the rules!!!

Insanity Kim said...

Oh man,

I am getting ready to fly "solo" with two kids strapped to me for 8 HOURS (that's just ONE flight!)! Say some prayers for me!While I do my best to not be a burden, I can't seem to avoid drama; I already wrote about Dying Burping Man in my Pukes on a Plane post, and I am really not in the mood for more blog post material on that subject.

Please get this post published somewhere...the world desperately needs some sensibility training.

Lulu said...

Pinto - welcome to Lululand, and I've already checked out your blogs - serious deck.

JJ - if only this could be done.....sighhhhh

IK - I forgot to publish another rule! DO remember to help out parents who are traveling on their own, with kids to manage!

w said...

hahahaha! man. after reading all that, i can definitely say:

travel rules!

ps. they stopped distributing peanuts on the airplanes because of me. idk why.

Anonymous said...

This was well worth the read! So funny 'cause it's true! I think there also should be a rule about the number of times your fellow passengers can push the button to call the flight attendant. My husband also wants to know what the etiquette is on 'plane farting'? Uhh..I'm thinking you can't roll down the window, so that's a definite no-no!

Travel Muse said...

You have totally nailed what we've all been thinking. Though I'd add that sockless shoe people to the Glamour Dont's. It may be easy, but it's also stinky more times than not. And walking around an airport barefoot, eww! Thanks for the laughs!