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The worst things you can do as a plane passenger, from going barefoot to smoking on a flight

The worst things you can do as a plane passenger, from going barefoot to smoking on a flight

Passengers Behaving Badly used to be the reserve of stag dos mainlining Jägermeister during a budget flight to Prague – but these days the catalogue of travellers’ misdemeanours at altitude grows ever longer.

The latest culprits include presidential candidate Robert F Kennedy JR, who was been accused of displaying “disgusting “ behaviour by walking to a plane’s bathroom while barefoot.

And, while a decade ago bad behaviour might have only been judged by your fellow flyers, these days offences can be snapped, videoed, uploaded and shared with the width and breadth of the internet via social media.

Aside from the worst offences – getting inebriated and starting a fist fight or calling out racist slurs, or even assaulting cabin crew – there are numerous examples of travellers engaging in questionable behaviour that, while unlikely to get them kicked off a flight, will almost certainly enrage everyone else unfortunate enough to share an aircraft cabin with them.

Pooling a combination of the worst crimes against humanity the travel desk has seen first-hand when flying and the most eyebrow-raising examples we’ve seen hit headlines in the last few years, here’s our definitive list of the actions that will likely get you cancelled onboard your next flight.

Hair harrassment

Long-haired passengers draping their locks over the back of the seat is galling behaviour – especially when it repeatedly happens on the same journey. It’s occurred countless times to me, and there’s only so much you can do to blow it out of the way. On one flight, I had blonde strands dangling perilously close to my dinner of congealed chicken and potatoes before I was forced to awkwardly speak up; mumbled apologies (on both sides, in fact, being British) but once the trays were cleared Rapunzel let down here hair once more. It’s no fun binge-watching films through a stranger’s mane. Benjamin Parker


US politician Robert F Kennedy Jr caused a stir by walking into a plane toilet while barefoot recently.

Mr Kennedy, the nephew of the 35th President of the US, John F Kennedy, is running as an independent candidate in the 2024 US presidential elections, after first declaring as a Democrat. Currently polling higher than any independent or third-party candidate in a generation, his flight etiquette has been making waves on social media after he…

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