Expedia survey reveals most annoying airline passengers

Most people just want a little peace and quiet when they’re flying, according to travel site Expedia.

But anyone whose flown recently knows a calm experience at 30,000 feet can be hard to come by. From chatty seat mates to people kicking your backside to drunk passengers, these frustrating behaviors drive millions of Americans crazy.

But which is the absolute worst?

Expedia’s third annual Airplane Etiquette survey revealed that the most annoying airline passenger is the seat kicker. The second worst offenders are inattentive parents who let their kids run wild and the third most annoying companion is the “Aromatic”—read stinky—passenger.


Other inflight annoyances included people who over indulged on alcohol and people who take off too many articles of clothing.

Expedia also found that 37 percent of people would pay extra for a dedicated quiet zone in order to avoid chatty companions. But when it comes to dealing with any of these obnoxious behaviors, about half of survey respondents said they just sit quietly and bare it through the flight. Only 21 percent of people confront offenders directly. And 10 percent admit trying to record the behavior— so mind your manners unless you want to end up on a site like Passenger Shaming.

Expedia commissioned independent global market research firm Gfk to conduct the survey of 1,019 randomly selected U.S. adults in August.

The results remind all flyers to be a bit more considerate when flying.

The most annoying passengers on an airplane

*Percentage indicates how often etiquette violation was cited by survey respondent.

1. Rear Seat Kicker                                 (61%)

2. Inattentive Parents                               (59%)

3. The Aromatic Passenger                       (50%)

4. The Audio Insensitive (talking or music)  (50%)

5. The Boozer                                           (45%)

6. Chatty Cathy                                         (43%)

7. Carry-On Baggage Offenders                  (38%)

8. The Queue Jumper (rushes to deplane)     (35%)

9. Seat-Back Guy (the seat recliner)             (32%)

10. Overhead Bin Inconsiderate                    (32%)

11. Pungent Foodies                                      (30%)

12. Back Seat Grabber                                   (27%)

13. The Amorous (inappropriate affection levels)(26%)

14. Undresser (removes shoes, socks or more)  (26%)

15. Mad Bladder (passenger making repeat bathroom visits) (24%)                                    

16. The Single and Ready to Mingle                    (13%)

17. The Seat Switcher                                       (13%)