Has anyone had a passenger behind them do THIS?

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Travel' started by disambiguous1, Nov 20, 2013.  |  Print Topic

  1. disambiguous1

    disambiguous1 Silver Member

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    I was on a flight from Frankfurt to FCO on Lufthansa last year, the second hop of a trip from the US to Rome. My feet were straight down, on the floor in front of my seat, not pushed back under me or anything. I felt something hitting my heels. It turned out to be the feet of the passenger behind me! After it happened again and again, I kicked back at whoever was doing it.

    Based on what I could see of the seat in front of me, it would take a pretty substantial effort and a lot of stretching to get one's feet that far up, so it certainly wasn't an accident.

    I was sitting in a window seat. Later on during the flight, the person stuck a foot between the side of the plane and the back of my seat, and nudged my elbow while it was on the armrest!

    The flight was a short one, so I didn't bother summoning a FA. I was tempted to poke my camera up over the seat and try to get a picture of whoever was doing it, but I know that airlines can make a lot of trouble when people photograph other passengers like that. It wasn't anything I couldn't deal with, and I was too tired after a long red-eye flight from the States to make a big deal out of it.

    When I stood up at the end of the flight, I saw that the perpetrator was a WOMAN! She looked to be in her 50's.

    I'm a male approaching 60, and I was traveling with my daughter. Not sure if this woman was some sort of pervert or if she was trying to come on to me, most likely the former. I recognized her later in the terminal, and thought about getting a picture of her, but she quickly ran into a restroom.

    As far as I can recall, I had not bumped anyone or had any negative interaction with anyone when getting onto the flight, so I don't think it was in retribution for anything. It seemed to be completely random.

    What might have been the appropriate thing to do in such a situation? If I'd have had something to write on, I might have quietly given a note to the FA. Even if it was a small inconvenience for me, the airline might have made a note of it regarding that particular passenger, and if a similar complaint about her was made on other flights I'm sure they would have taken some action. --DA1
     
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  2. timfrost

    timfrost Silver Member

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    "Excuse me, but your assorted appendages seem to be encroaching on my already limited personal space. Could you please try to keep them in your own seat area?" Is what I would have said. Minus "assorted appendages." Maybe. Okay, I'd have said that too.
     
  3. mattsteg
    Original Member

    mattsteg Gold Member

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    You may just be reading too much into this. I've seen the armrest thing more than once. The underseat interaction I can understand as well - usually there's a bar at the front of the underseat area to hold in luggage that prevents this (and I've bumped this many times) but it's possible to miss. She was probably just stretching out trying to sleep.

    Pervert, really?
     
  4. Newscience

    Newscience Gold Member

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    FWIW, earlier this year an idiot sitting directly behind me (in steerage class on a flight from FRA to IAD) decided to put his stocking feet up on my armrest! :eek:
    I pushed them off with my elbows, and turned around to look and see who he was. That immediately stopped his rude behavior. Getting a flight attendant involved was my next step. According to some of the travel blogs, calling the flight attendant should have been step #1, but it all worked out well.

    Most definitely it pays to take some action against this incredibly rude behavior. Letting the flight crew deal with it is a good start. I'm with travel consultant Peter Greenberg on how to deal with incredibly rude and boorish behavior on airplanes: eject the passenger from the plane - in flight! :rolleyes:
    See:
    http://petergreenberg.com/2013/11/18/bad-travelers/
     
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  5. timfrost

    timfrost Silver Member

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    I usually try to politely deal with issues myself before I bring in a member of the crew.
     
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  6. jgreen

    jgreen New Member

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    Oh no, things like that are so annoying! I'd have probably wanted to say something but wouldn't have dared. Maybe i'd have just looked round at her continuously until she stopped.
     
  7. Flyer1976
    Original Member

    Flyer1976 Gold Member

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    Yuck! I would totally have turned around and said something to the woman.
     
  8. steve.scott1983

    steve.scott1983 Member

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    At 6 foot 3 and an economy class traveler 90% of the time, sometimes I'm the perpetrator of this crime. I'm stretching/trying to get comfortable and my legs miss the under the seat bar and I touch the feet of the person in front of me.

    However I always bring them right back. Usually (always) the person in front have had their feet tucked under their seat.... But once I've touched feet once I am very wary to not do it again!
     
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  9. timfrost

    timfrost Silver Member

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    Legitimate accidents do happen, but there's a clear difference between "oops my foot slid/fell/poked through and I removed it" and the same foot clearly trying to be where it shouldn't and/or pushing your arms/feet out of the way. Speaking from experience at work, it's always nice when the passenger tries to resolve these issues on their own first. It might be a little bit awkward for you personally, but the passenger you are (nicely) confronting will take any request from you in a very different way from a crew member, especially if it was an accident. Bringing a crew member in before you've tried to mediate yourself can make that passenger feel very singled out and actually more uncomfortable. As always YMMV, but a crew member should be a last resort in my opinion, not a first option. If the response from that individual makes YOU feel threatened, remove yourself from the situation if you can and explain it to the FA at the galley if possible. That way you're involving the smallest number of people possible and the spacehog won't feel ganged-up on.

    On the other hand, I (again) recognize that train is not equal to plane, but generally speaking if someone can come to us (the crew) where we are and away from the issue we can sometimes resolve things without the rude passenger knowing where the complaint came from by re-seating you, thus eliminating any animosity at all. This is always less likely in busy times and there are hardly ever empty seats on planes these days.

    Just my two cents. Maybe a real FA can weigh in too?
     
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  10. RCTP

    RCTP Silver Member

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    I've been both the victim and perpetrator of this particular crime before.

    As a victim, I gave those unwanted limbs a couple of hard kicks and the passenger behind stopped.

    As a perpetrator, I was stretching and realised I've touched the legs in front. Quickly retracted all my limbs (including my arms) as some form of panic response and became mindful not to stretch too far out for the rest of the flight.

    Nowadays I just place my carry on luggage under the seat in front and it kinda solves the problem, if not I'll stretch my legs with my heel touching the floor so I'll know when I hit the metal "boundary".

    heh.
     
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  11. I am here now!

    I am here now! Active Member

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    I'm not very tall (5'10") but the same happened to me a few times while stretching my legs. I try to be careful, but accidents happen. However, I never got any angry looks or anything. I think people understood what happened, and it wasn't like I was trying to enter their space. Like RCTP said, though, with your carry-on underneath the seat in front of me, that doesn't happen anymore. If I need to stretch on a long flight, I just get up and walk for a minute. That's enough for me.
     
  12. Bill Hunt

    Bill Hunt Silver Member

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    Encountered this once, but the passenger had taken his socks OFF (or was not wearing socks). One bump of my elbow cured that one.

    Now, I did have an aspiring "drummer" once behind me. He was using the tray table as a practice instrument, with his drumsticks. A strong glare put a stop to that too.
     

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