Why snapping your fingers to call a flight attendant is a very bad idea

A survey of international cabin crew has them list passengers’ most annoying habits

Don’t like the service you get when flying an international airline? The feeling is mutual, it seems.

Seen by many as one of the most glamorous and desirable jobs, cabin crew are in the unique position to meet and greet people from all walks of life.
However, with nearly three million people sitting in the sky every day, some regular habits and requests can understandably get under their skin more than others.
A survey conducted by Skyscanner, a global travel search portal, of more than 700 international cabin crew members, from 85 countries, shows that the cabin crew (mostly air hostesses, we guess) are almost as exasperated with some of passengers’ annoying habits as some of us who just can’t seem to catch their attention to get a cup of coffee at 30,000 feet.
But even if pressing the flight attendant button hasn’t really had the desired effect, do not, for your own sake, call a flight attendant by snapping your fingers. For, according to the survey, the biggest gripe for a quarter of cabin crew (26 per cent) is passengers who click their fingers at them to get their attention.
And for god’s sake, whatever you do, do not talk while the attendant is giving a safety demonstration before the flight takes off – that’s another of their pet peeves, with one in ten attendants citing that as their most annoying gripe, suggesting that many frequent flyers do not pay attention in spite of increasing requests by cabin staff to do so.
Other annoying habits at 30,000ft include the scramble to leave the plane before the seat belt signs are switched off (13 per cent) and passengers trying to cram too much hand baggage in the overhead lockers (11 per cent). Stuffing rubbish in the seat compartments (7 per cent) also completed the list of cabin crew gripes.
Skyscanner’s Sam Poullain said: “This is the first time that we’ve surveyed international cabin crew and the findings give us a real insight into what they really think of passengers… It must be frustrating for cabin crew when passengers try and cram as much hand baggage in the overhead locker as humanly possible, however carrying only hand luggage can save passengers quite a lot of money as the cost of putting baggage in the hold can be very expensive. Unless airlines charge less for hold luggage, I don’t see this changing. ”
The most annoying habits of air passengers
1. Clicking fingers to get your attention                                        26%
2. Leaving seat at the end before the light goes off                    13%
3. Stuffing too many bags into overhead locker                           11%
4. Complaining there’s no space for their bag in the locker         10%
5. Talking through the safety demo                                               9%
6. Asking for more blankets/pillows                                               8%
7. Stuffing rubbish in the seat pocket                                            7%
8. Asking for a different meal                                                        6%
9. Ringing the attendant bell to complain about temperature        6%
10. Asking for a specific brand of drink                                          4%


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