The A-Z Of Airline Passengers

Everyday, crew around the world come into contact with hundreds of different people from all walks of life and i’m sure most of us will agree that passengers can either make or break our day.

Here we take a look at the different types of passengers your hard working flight attendants have to deal with. If you are a member of the flying public have a read through and see which category you fall in to.

Used For - A-Z of PAX


Arseholes. Many passengers will fall into this category and there will be at least one on every flight. It’s not just on board you’ll find them. They’ll be robbing your parking space in the car park and then moaning on the bus to the terminal. They’ll be in the queue for check-in and again at security kicking up a fuss and you can guarantee that they’ll be sat next to you for that ten-hour trip across the Atlantic. Arseholes, found everywhere.

Abusive. Unfortunately, this type of passenger is becoming a much more frequent flyer. Incidents of ‘air rage’ are on the rise. The latest figures highlight the countless acts of both verbal and even physical violence towards crew. But my colleagues and I will agree that these numbers are wrong. The real figure would be MUCH higher but sadly many incidents go unreported. Ok so air travel has be more stressful nowadays but is there really any need to take it out on us?

Just remember abusive passenger, no matter what shit you’ve been through before you step on to our aircraft, leave it on the stairs! Or we’ll have you offloaded and locked up quicker than you can say jumbo jet.

Used For - A-Z of PAX
Piss us off and this could be you!


Business Men. This type of passenger can go one of two ways. Most are regular travellers who know the rules and don’t need asking to do anything twice. Occasionally though, there’s the demanding t*@ts who think that we’re there to be their personal bloody assistant. I don’t think so!

Used For - A-Z of PAX


Cabin Crew. Positioning, dead-heading or going away on a well deserved holiday. The majority will be good, keep quiet and not be too demanding. But as the saying goes, ‘There’s always one’. They’ll watch intently as you carry out your procedures and service because most of us just can’t switch off and of course they’ll judge you if they think…..

“We’ll it’s not as good as we do it on [insert airline name here]”


Delayed. They’ll be angry, they’ll be abusive and it will be all our fault. “Certainly sir, I’ll see what I can do about the fog”. Put it this way, if it’s a ‘tech’ delay, I’d much rather they sorted the dodgy engine on terra firma, than have it explode at 39,000 feet, wouldn’t you?


Economy. To be fair, economy is improving around the world. But even so….‘Once more for the cheap seats at the back’. Zero leg room, a crappy see-through blanket, one “meal” every 6 hours, forced to pay for a drink and and IFE screen that doesn’t work, “Certainly madam I’ll just go and reset the system”….I won’t. I guess you get what you pay for. It’s the smell that hits you first. Rotten feet, fart and sweat all mixed in with a hint of some cheap Britney Spears or Lady GaGa perfume.

Used For - A-Z of PAX
Economy, enough to drive even the sanest person to tears.

Easy Going. Our favourite passenger. Boarding cards ready. Little or no hand luggage, which is then stowed promptly and correctly. Seats taken straight away, seat belt fastened and this is where they remain all flight, apart from the odd toilet break which they get in and out, wearing shoes, and don’t treat it like a day spa . If we’ve run out of something or are delayed, they won’t complain. They ask how our day is going and show a bit of empathy towards us, while everyone else just gives us abuse. If YOU are this passenger – Thank you! You will receive first class treatment in an economy cabin, and if you’re really good maybe, just maybe, we’ll get you an upgrade. This is the passenger everyone should aspire to be.


First Class. Those lucky few who get to turn left on boarding. This is where everyone wants to be sat. Exquisite food, champagne on tap, lie-fat beds and even showers on certain aircraft. The domain of the rich and famous. They will look down their noses at you, their servant for the duration of the flight. Some will be demanding, while others will just wish to be left alone.

Fearful Flyers. If you’re a genuine nervous flyer, we will do our best to be sympathetic. If you are saying it in an attempt to get the extra leg-room seats then think again, we can see right through you. Believe it or not you won’t be the first to have tried this trick and you certainly won’t be the last. I guess they have a point really. Locked in a pressurised metal tube, full of flammable liquid, hurtling through the air at 500 mph, five miles up – terrifying. They will have fear in their eyes from the moment they board, screaming at the slightest bit of turbulence or change in engine noise. My advice, pop a Valium and have a few drinks to calm your nerves.

Used For - A-Z of PAX


Grumpy. The chronic complainer, moaning at every opportunity. They will want to know who they can direct their frustrations at when they land, or ask for a feedback form during the flight which we will promptly tear up. They won’t like the food, or the wine and will repeatedly press the call bell with something else to moan about. Constantly sighing and rolling their eyes, they’ll put up a fight at every opportunity and make a complete idiot of themselves in front of the other passengers. They’ll end an argument with “I will never fly with this airline again!”. If I had a pound for every passenger that has ever said that to me, I wouldn’t be listening to idiots like you anymore. See you on your return flight.


Hen Parties. Always up for a laugh with the gay boys, sometimes bitchy towards the female crew; probably due to the fact they know they’ll never be as gorgeous or glamorous as our fellow cart tarts. They’ll be drunk before they even get on and usually be wearing a tacky T-Shirt that says ‘Cum Guzzling Claire’ or ‘Cock Teasing Tracey’. Classy!

Used For - A-Z of PAX


Ibiza. From the UK, these horrendous passengers need their own category, as most are complete animals. The stories that come back from crew that survive the ‘late night Ibiza’s’ spread round a base quicker than the hot new first officer. Sex in front of other passengers. Snorting god knows what off tray tables or in the toilets. Fights breaking out between girls and boys in the aisles or seats. I’ve known numerous crew who have needed counselling after doing a late night Ibiza flight.

Used For - A-Z of PAX
Typical Ibiza passenger behaviour.


Just married Honeymooners. If they’re back in economy, they will only stop kissing long enough to tell you that they are on their honeymoon in the vain hope we’ll upgrade them or give them some freebies. Watch out for the constant attempts at joining the mile high club. God forbid they end up sat across the aisle from each other. You’ll have to prize their hands apart, as you try to get the trolley past. Personally, I love parking it right between them for a while and flirting with the husband.

Used For - A-Z of PAX


Mr Know it all. There’s usually one on every sector. They know exactly how the aircraft works, they know the role of pilot and cabin crew inside and out and they will make sure you, and everyone else on that aircraft knows it. “I’ve probably flown more than you have”. No you haven’t. Dick.

Used For - A-Z of PAX


Late passengers. Do you not realise we have homes, or cocktails and a swimming pool to get to. What makes it worse is when they saunter down the air bridge, loaded with bags of duty-free, expecting you to find space in the lockers for it all. Word of warning, we will have very little sympathy for you unless you’re running towards us, sweat dripping from your brow and struggling to breathe as you try to give us a valid excuse.

The Loyalty Card Holder“I had dinner last week with the Chairman of your airline” “I’m a platinum card holder”. Of course you are sir. You and the thousands of other idiots that think a loyalty card is your free pass to talk to me like a tw@t.


Manner-less. I don’t care who you are, or what cabin you’re sat in, those little words ‘please’ and ‘thank-you’ go a long way while you’re trapped with me at 39,000 feet. Manners cost nothing, something people seem to forget these days.

Used For - A-Z of PAX

Mile high clubbers. Unless you’ve got your own suite, or you’re doing it on a private jet then forget it. That see through blanket is not enough to cover your modesty and why anyone would want to have sex in an aeroplane toilet is beyond me? More germs than a doctors waiting room, piss soaked floors and stinky nappies in the bin. Even if you’re practicing safe sex, you still stand a good chance of catching an STI from having your bare bits bobbing up and down on the rotten surfaces. And please, if you are going to do it at least lock the door and dispose of your protection properly.

Used For - What Happens In The Galley and A-Z of PAX


Naughty Children. Best place for them is in the overhead locker, or better still in a cage in the hold. “Madam if you can’t control your kids you should have kept your legs shut”. And you can piss right off if you think I’m looking after it while you have a few wines, the badge says ‘cabin crew’ not ‘crèche crew’. And don’t even get me started on when the parent asks you to get their spawn of satan to do something “Look Tilly, the man will shout at you if you don’t put your seat belt on”. Actually madam i’ll shout at YOU for having no control over your spoilt brat.

Used For - A-Z of PAX
Children should just be left at home.


Odour Offender. Smelly feet, fart, B.O., bad breath – an aircraft cabin is a full on assault on the senses, especially on long-haul. And It’s not just the bodily smells. Cheap perfumes and aftershave. Smelly food. Vomit. Please take that hot towel we offer you and freshen up.


PRMs. Passengers with Reduced Mobility, assistance passengers or whatever your airline calls them. This is an awkward one, but I felt they needed their own category. Most are lovely and make zero fuss, but there’s always one of every category isn’t there! Enter the ones who think they’re the only person with a disability and will make damn sure you know about it as they try to make you look small in front of the other passengers, although it’s usually just them who end up looking daft. Then there’s those who make a miraculous recovery during the flight. They board needing every assistance possible, then a few hours in our company and they’re healed, ‘Praise the Lord!’. They jump up, grab their luggage and run up that air-bridge faster than Usain Bolt.


Questioners. Where are we? How high are we? How long is left? Do you fly straight back? How long have you been crew? What’s for dinner? What drinks do you have? Where can I stow my luggage? PLEASE JUST SHUT THE FUCK UP!

Used For - A-Z of PAX
“Where are we now?” “Well madam you’re somewhere over the Atlantic and I’m in hell!”

Queens. The wannabe dollies. Will give the gay crew evils throughout the flight and think they know all there is to know about flying because some lad they sucked off in the toilets at G-A-Y works for BA.


Restless Passengers. Up as soon as the seat belt sign is off. You have paid for your seat, not the aisle, nor the galley. Find your seat and stay in it. We can’t get the trolley past and it’s very uncomfortable for those sat around you. The galley is not somewhere for you to do your exercises or loiter, so return to your seat now. Don’t faff with your luggage, repeatedly removing it from the locker to take things out and don’t stand right behind us while we’re out with the trolley.

Recliners. There’s very little room in economy as it is, but when the passenger in front decides to recline their seat, it can cause absolute murder. I’ve witnessed grown adults fight over a fully reclined seat. If you wish to do it, which you are of course perfectly entitled too, please just have a little respect for the person sat behind you, especially if they have just been served their meal or a drink.

Used For - A-Z of PAX
‘I didn’t wanna be comfortable anyways’


Stag parties. The Neanderthal ones will try to give the gay crew shit, while others will try to chat up the girls. The stag will usually be pissed and probably dressed as a woman. Great for crew that get paid commission from bar takings, as they consume all the warm beers before moving onto the spirits. That is of course if they haven’t brought their own with them.

Used For - A-Z of PAX
Hilarious and 100% original, honestly! Keep up the great work fellas.


Tray Table fiddler. Just as annoying as the recliner or restless passenger for those sat in front. The table fiddler seems to forget that their tray is attached to another persons seat and every little movement can be felt. Up and down more times than a Virgin hosties knickers. Can cause even the sanest person to lose their temper.

Used For - A-Z of PAX

Talkers. PLEASE JUST SHUT UP! They attempt to become their fellow passengers or the crews best friend whilst on board. Take the hint, there’s a reason why our galley curtain is closed and the passenger sat next to you has put their headphones on.

Teenagers. Usually on school trips. There’ll be the ring leader, the smart arse that thinks they’re hilarious. That is until the grown ups put them to shame with a quick put down that they probably won’t even understand. Meanwhile, teachers sit oblivious at the other end of the cabin, getting pissed on the cheap wine.


Upgrades. They’ll be in awe of the real glass and actual knives and forks. They’ll thoroughly enjoy the proper food and choice of wines available, instead of the slop and vinegar-esque vino served in economy. They will usually be much friendlier than the regular first or business class guests and won’t complain about a thing.


Virgin Flyers. Those who have never set foot on an aircraft. They’ll ask to see the cockpit. They won’t have their boarding card ready. They’ll need escorting to their seat. They’ll consume everything free placed in front of them and take anything that’s not nailed down as a memento. They’ll make people nervous as they fiddle with the flight deck door, when actually they’re just looking for the toilet. They won’t know how to work the door and when they do manage to get inside and have done their business, they completely ignore the big blue button marked ‘FLUSH’ and press the crew call bell instead.

Used For - A-Z of PAX


Weak Bladders. Those who seem to have to visit the lavatory every five minutes. More frustrating for the poor bugger sat on the aisle, if they are located in a window seat. Do they not have toilets in the terminal?


XL Passengers. Another awkward one, but let’s be honest, no one wants to be stuck next to the salad dodger on a long-haul flight. There will be an invasion of your already limited space and they won’t be able to get their arm rest down. But of course there’s the discomfort and embarrassment for the horizontally challenged passenger themselves and with obesity on the rise, it’s becoming more and more of a problem for airlines to deal with.


“You wouldn’t get this on BA”. How many times have we heard this. Actually, i’m sure there has probably been some idiot that has actually said this on a British Airways flight. I love BA but come on, if you don’t like it then why aren’t you flying with them in the first place?


Z-List Celebrities. The worst kind. “Don’t you know who I am?” “Give me a second sir and I’ll just do a PA. ‘Ladies and Gentleman we have a passenger here who doesn’t know who he is. Can anyone help'”. Erm, no I don’t know who you are and I don’t care either. Sit down and shut the fuck up like the rest of them. If you were a real celebrity you’d be flying on your own private jet, bitch.

© by Dan Air.

37 thoughts

  1. Fantastic blog I work for an airline company and most of these are so true especially the mr know it all we get a lot of these in delays I’m the easy goin passenger

  2. You sound really angry. I’m crew myself & have been for 7 years and still enjoy my job. If you don’t, I think it’s time you left flying & left customer service.
    Also I disagree about upgrades being nice &easy they usually want eeeeeverything 😉

    1. Hi Carla.
      Thanks for the comments. It’s all meant very tongue-in-cheek, I do still fly and I do still love my job, but come on we all have our off days and this is meant to be somewhere my fellow crew can come and have a bit of a laugh and a rant. And your point about upgrades, well all the ones i’ve had have been great, maybe the wrong people have been upgraded on your airline?

      1. I agree with Carla. The wording used even sounds aggressive to me.

        I know there’s lots of people talking like that about their customers but honestly, if you think like that I cannot imagine you truly like your job. Otherwise you would probably have at least used friendlier, not as aggressive, words. You’re talking about “off days”, well, reading the article makes me believe you don’t have other than off days.

        If your main objective really was to cheer up your fellow crew, doing it privately would have been the better choice. Because like that, you just seem to desperately search for sympathy you apparently cannot find in your private life.

  3. Superb, I like to think I’m easy-going. On the last 2 flights I have been on I’ve even asked for the compliments card as I think that too many people are too quick to complain, but never seem to find the time to compliment the hard work the crew do.

    Excellent blog.

  4. Hey, I’m ex-crew, and I always leave unopened haribo and a decent magazine in the seat pocket! You’ve got a great blog 🙂

  5. That is so true of the passengers, Ex BA cabin crew,know flying as First officer for Emirates.
    Most of the passengers are nice but we as crew have all experienced some demanding passengers.

    1. 1st officer? Hope not on my next flight to dubai wouldn’t like to put my trust in someone who can’t spell now

  6. You mention people who claim to know everything about airplanes when they fly, yet probably these same idiots can’t get their f*cking boarding pass ready when they have been sitting for 45 minutes before the boarding call.

    Same thing in the health care industry. Some idiot will spend ten minutes on the internet, and think they have themselves fully diagnosed before walking into the Doctor’s office. Yet this same moron will be totally clueless as to what medications they are on. They won’t know the name of a single medication they are taking, or what the hell they are for. If the nurse is lucky, they might be able to tell her “there’s that water pill”, or another favorite “there’s that one for my heart”. Ok dough head, which one of the 50,000 that are out there? Does it stabilize you’re heart rate, increase the contractility of the cardiac muscle, or relax your blood venules to lower you’re blood pressure perhaps? Furthermore what’s the dosage, and how often per day are you ‘supposed’ to be taking it?
    Would it kill the person to copy what is written on the side of every pill bottle, and put in in their wallet, and bring it with them? I know being retired can be awful time consuming, and I’m sure finding the fifteen minutes to do this could be a challenge.

    Trust me, I’ve flown in cattle class, and I sympathise with the stewardess. It’s not like she’s making $687,000.00 per year after taxes to put up with the dickhead customers. Even if she we’re I would still question if it would be enough.

  7. Forgot “O” – Orthodox Jews. Now I have no problem with people following any religion they wish – however I would prefer it if that following didn’t intrude on my space-of-a-different-religion. Crowding six men into a galley space for a four-hour prayer session on the way to Tel Aviv does count as an intrusion.

  8. Love Love Love your blog in general everything you write is so true,, Had to comment on this one thou, as Ive had nearly all of these situations, and still get them on a daily basis, in fact had a few yday and will prob get some more tomorrow! Your only saying what we r thinking, so keep it up lol!

  9. Funny facts. Have been a cabin crew myself before, and it all is true. Though to be honest,i don’t like the hate all, it all is cheap or fake, pretentious crew, all in all we are serving customers who at least pay for it, for a job….

  10. Take it easy.I have been flying for more than 11 yrs as one of the crew members to become an observer during my tenure has encountered many things sunny and happy to more difficult and complex matters what is your feeling when you are shot, and you are in the air what will happen when recovering and return back to fly once again what is the feeling that you’ll feel when you return should be aggressive with passengers, of course mentalities people of various nationalities, colors and conditions are not always happy must adapt to and start a new life in the world of aviation, and that it considers the first trip you

  11. On the Brisbane to LA flight, I was middle seated between window woman and aisle man.
    After eating,we two ladies needed the loo, and aisle man was asleep. We piled all the containers from eating onto window women’s tray so we could get out. Before we could jostle sleeping aisle man, the person in front of window woman laid back his seat. It all came crashing down. We did manage to the loo. lol

  12. Ha,brilliant-I’m a low maintenance economy passenger and usually buy a box of chocs from duty free prior to boarding to give the cabin crew when I leave the ‘plane-I find basic good manners & the odd well-aimed compliment go waaaaay further than any other behaviour in making for a great flight…oh,you forgot ‘Y’-youtube-ers,who simply have to video every aspect of the flight,from a three hour shot of the view out of the window to an in depth examination & critique of the meal tray and of course the flushing mechanism in the khazi…fascinating viewing 😀

  13. Can I add one type of passenger/ Rare, but worth their weight in gold. Manners-full, usually elderly ladies who were raised back when courtesy was in fashion. Having a pearl like this on a flight, can make any crew member forget about the A to Z riffraff. God bless our senior citizens !!!

  14. I found your comments entertaining. I am unfortunately one of the XL passengers and for that reason have just about given up flying. I hate having to ask for a seat belt extender and I really do not like crowding someone else that has paid for their seat. That’s my problem and certainly not yours. The one thing always practiced when I did fly was courtesy to the flight crew. I figure it is a difficult enough job without having rude or disruptive passengers to deal with. Thanks for letting me chime in.

  15. What about Religious? Had 2 on an Africa service who prayed for god to keep them safe but repeatedly ignored my requests to move their bags away from an exit!

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