There's been a bit of a stink lately about people reclining their seats on aeroplanes. There's an American guy who's designed a device to stop the passengers in front from lying back. There are people ranting on internet forums.
But it doesn't bother me that much. The way I see it, it's your right. It's part of buying an air ticket. If you're a seat recliner, go ahead and recline. And after all, there are far more annoying travellers out there…
The carousel charger
You see them all poised with their trolleys, waiting for the beep, waiting for the baggage carousel to start spinning. And then it's on! It's a race to the front as everyone surges forward and bashes their trolleys right on the edge of the carousel, thus ensuring that anyone else who wants to grab a bag will have to push through the morass and probably miss grabbing their luggage anyway because they're too busy fighting with wheels and metal. Everyone: just take a few steps back.
The security shocker
Huh? I have to get my laptop out? And toiletries? Well this is over the limit but it's really expensive, can I just keep it? My belt? Do I really have to take it off? Oh my bracelet – that's probably what set the machine off. I know there are people who only travel rarely, but surely by now everyone knows the rules in the security line. Get yourself prepared, and everyone gets through much quicker.
The meal-time recliner
Pushing your seat back during the flight? Fine. It's your right. Doing it during mealtimes though, when the person behind you is going to end up with a tray full of butter chicken rammed into their chest? Not cool. It's a simple courtesy on flights: put your seat upright during mealtimes. You don't need to be reclined to feed yourself.
Mr Giant Carry-on
Everyone sees you, Mr Giant Carry-on. Everyone knows you're taking the mickey with your oversized roller luggage. Everyone knows that the overhead bin will be chock full by the time you sit down because you've decided to chance your arm on bringing most of your worldly belongings into the cabin with you. You know who you are. The fact you don't care just makes it all the more annoying. (Thankfully, airlines are finally beginning to take action on this)
The elbow hog
Here's my theory: if you're unlucky enough to get lumped with the middle seat, you deserve to at least get your elbows on both of the arm rests. Because even with that small luxury, your journey is going to suck. Still, that doesn't stop those in the aisle and window seats from engaging in a little elbow wrestling to deny you even that pleasure. As with many annoyances on aeroplanes, this one is all about courtesy.
The blasé parent
Their little terror is screaming up and down the aisle, banging on the seats and causing a ruckus, but the blasé parent couldn't care less. They've got magazines and seatback entertainment – little kiddie can do whatever he or she pleases. I understand parents' desire for a little "me time" in the sky, but please, keep your child reined in.
"Sorry, s'cuse me, sorry, I'm late, I'm going to miss my flight. Can I just jump in front of… thanks. Sorry. S'cuse me. Um, can I…?"
I don't mind a drink on a flight. A beer or two, maybe a glass of wine. But it's when the guy in the window seat decides to give it a solid nudge, knocking back beers like they're part of the inflight entertainment and then deciding he has to go to the toilet seven times in the last hour of the flight, that the drunkard becomes a problem.
The pushy-in-the-aisle passenger
I get it. You want to get off the plane as soon as possible. We all do. But there's a huge queue of people up front and nudging me with your luggage or pushing me with your shoulder is not going to get it to move any faster. Chill.
The seat kicker
These are usually kids, but not always. Plus, the roll-out of touchscreen seat-back entertainment can result in a constant "tap, tap, tap" around your head area if there's not enough insulation between the TV screen and the back of the seat. Pretty painful on a long flight.
What do you think are the most annoying travel habits? How do you deal with people behaving this way?