It Takes All Kinds To Fill A Plane: FAs Share Weird Experiences

Open Jaw

Q&A website Quora recently asked flight attendants to share the weirdest things they’ve seen in the line of duty. And they’ve seen lots!  The common denominator of a lot of bizarre flight behaviour? People can't seem to understand planes aren't private spaces. Here are a few samples.


  • “I had a friend who worked as a flight attendant and she got into a mild argument with a guy who insisted on having EVERYTHING that was free on the flight. If he saw someone next to him get something, he wanted it too. At one point during the flight a lady asked for a sanitary pad to help her with an 'emergency' situation. He insisted he should have one too – because you know, it's free, right? My friend tried to reason with him. I'm not sure if his English was 100%, because he insisted again and seemed to assume the pad was ... a sleep mask. Upon receiving his sanitary pad he proceeded to peel the paper backing off and expose the sticky side; he stuck the thing over his eyes and soon afterwards fell asleep.” 
  • “The flight was almost empty, so everyone had 3 seats to themselves for lying down or whatever. Suddenly there is the smell of smoke in the cabin — it turns out a drunk passenger was lying down trying to smoke, covering himself with 4-5 blankets in a failed attempt to mask the smell. When he was discovered, he tried to stub out the cigarette on the floor.” 

  • “A family member of mine works as cabin crew. She told me that once just before meal service a man emerged from the lavatory with one of those paper toilet seat covers. He then proceeded to put it over his head. He seemed to think it was a bib, to stop him dribbling food or drink on his clothes. This prompted a few other passengers to follow suit. The cabin crew decided that they could really do nothing without causing embarrassment, so they carried on with the meal service. “

  • “In the late 80's I was working first class on a trans-continental flight (SFO- JFK) for a major air carrier. The flight was completely full. I am not sure what the gate agent was thinking … but, after everyone had boarded, the crew noticed that we had a cat in its carrier seated next to a large talking bird in a cage. We tried to re-arrange the seating before departing the gate, but no one wanted to move! As not to cause a delay, we decided to go. It was a long flight as one might imagine. The cat would meow, and then the bird would say a swear word or 2, and this repetition went on for about 6 hours.”

  • “A passenger left their shoes on the gate outside the aircraft because they thought the aircraft's floor was purely clean they didn't want to make it dirty. We all thought it was so adorable and heartbreaking at the same time.”

  • We were setting up the galley for the meal service and some guy just goes into the galley and starts doing lunges in the middle whilst we are all staring at him. If that wasn't enough, he then proceeds to lie down and started doing his sit ups. We asked him to go back to his seat, and he proceeds to complain about how his seat is too cramped and he needs to exercise. I get it, the seats suck, but really?” 

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