This article was originally published on Travlerz
A famous philosopher once said, "Hell is other people," but perhaps he should have said, "Hell is flying with other people." You see, something very weird happens to around certain parts of the population when they travel––their brains seem to leave their bodies. In trying to make their own flight as comfortable as possible, they forget to consider their surroundings... and that other people exist. Here are some of our favorite funny in-flight incidents––some will have you laughing, but others may make your blood boil!
Even Chewie Needs Some Time off
Even Wookies need a vacation, so it's nice to see Chewbacca finally getting some time off. And it's a good thing he's there because––standing seven feet tall––he can help everyone reach the overhead lockers. Going by the fact that the head cushion covers look like R2-D2, we're guessing this might be a Star Wars-themed flight and that everyone is perhaps off to a convention. Either that or Chewie is back there fixing the hyperdrive!
Chewie needing a vacation is all very well, but it leaves one rather disturbing question––if the Wookie is flying coach, then who's co-piloting the Millennium Falcon?
We Hope He Remembered The Autopilot!
We've all fallen asleep at work, right? Maybe during a boring Powerpoint presentation or an Annual General Meeting. But this pilot decided to get forty winks at the wheel. In fact, he appears to be sleeping before take-off, which isn't an essential part of the trip at all, is it? It's not as if there aren't dozens of safety checks and calculations that need to be carried out, right?
Luckily for this pilot, he had his trusty co-pilot carry out all the safety checks... and snap this somewhat alarming photo.
Flying North For Winter
As you know, penguins can't fly, so when they need to migrate north for the winter, these two little fellas decided to hop aboard a flight to Cancun! Then, maybe because it was a budget flight, they didn't get fed, so they went looking for some of their favorite snacks. Luckily, the guy in seat 42C was a fisherman and had some pilchards stashed in his pockets. Or maybe not. Who knows!
Remember, penguins come from the southern hemisphere, whereas polar bears are only found in the Arctic. In fact, the words 'Arctic' and 'Antarctic' come from the Greek for 'bear,' meaning the Arctic is where bears come from, and the Antarctic means 'place with no bears.' Now you know!
This Would Only Happen In Australia
Those Aussies famously love their beer. But can you imagine waiting for your baggage and this lonely can of beer coming trundling along the conveyor belt? Yes, it seems this can was so precious that the staff at Qantas Airlines checked it separately. Or perhaps some thirsty soul ordered it from the bottle shop or bottlo (that's Aussie for a liquor store) as life in Western Australia is pretty remote.
We wonder if it was still potable after getting slammed around by the baggage handlers. They aren't exactly famous for being gentle!
This Is What Happens When You Don't Wear Your Mask
Some people refuse to wear masks on flights, so this person took matters into their own hands and hermetically sealed themselves in a giant plastic bag. And 'matters' aren't the only thing they took into their own hands––they also took their life into their own hands as we believe they've got about seven minutes of air in that bag. Luckily, flight attendants are trained for all types of emergencies.
The good news is that this passenger didn't get COVID-19. The bad news is that they invented a new shade of blue as they suffocated twelve minutes after take-off.
The Pony Express
In days gone by, you might have used the Pony Express. Back between 1860 and 1861, when cowboys inhabited the Wild, Wild West, the Pony Express was an ultra-fast mail service between Missouri and California. Unfortunately, seven Pony Express riders died in its inaugural year and it was closed down. Natives allegedly killed four men, one died in an accident, two froze to death, and one was hanged for murder after he got drunk and killed a man!
Nowadays, the Pony Express looks more like this. We're glad these guys booked seats in the first row, as they definitely needed the extra legroom. Even if he's only got little legs!
Ladies And Gentlemen, This Is Your Captain Speaking
Passengers just love their films being interrupted by the captain's announcements––whether we're being informed how that we're cruising at a steady 35,000 feet, that the weather is a balmy 45 degrees at our destination, or that our TV dinner will be served in 15 minutes. But we've got a theory that the pilot and co-pilot on this route have a bet to see who can pause the in-flight movie that they're enjoying at the most awkward moment.
And the winner is this Captain by pausing the movie on this poor woman who is either in ecstasy at her head massage or has been caught short for the restroom.
What An Incredible Smell This Must Have
You'd expect an airplane to smell clean, at the very least. If you're going to get stuck inside a flying tin can for a few hours, it might as well be in good, unsoiled condition. But the people on board this flight must have smelled that something wasn't quite right, and it seemed to be coming from a baby's freshly soiled diaper. Stuffed in the thinnest plastic bag and hung up on the hook so everybody on the plane can sample the delightful aroma.
Come on, parents! What on earth were you thinking? This is definitely one example that should have most people's blood boiling! 10/10 for having no consideration for other human beings.
See You In Another Life, Brother
If you don't recognize actor Jorge Garcia, he played Hugo "Hurley" Reyes in Lost. And sitting next to him doesn't bode well for a flight as the show saw Oceanic Flight 815 crash on a mysterious, monster-infested magical island. Of course, the guy who took the photo––who looks a bit like John Locke––saw the funny side, but even so, you'd definitely start praying that you'd make it to your destination.
The only way it could get worse is if you were on Ajira Flight 316 to Guam and you realized Hurley, Jack, Kate, Sayid, et al. were going back to the island!
This Passenger Can't Bear To Be Apart From His Kids
If you've watched Lost, remember when Sun gave birth to Ji Yeon in Korea and her husband Jin spent an entire episode trying to buy his newborn daughter a giant stuffed panda but was thwarted at every opportunity? Well, this photo must come from a deleted scene from that hilarious, touching episode. Okay, of course, that's not really actor Daniel Dae Kim; it's just a doting father who really loves his kids.
And to prove how much he loves them, he must have paid for a whole extra seat for that adorable stuffed panda. We think it's stuffed, but it's so realistic, it could be a real panda!
Did You Purchase An Extra Seat, Sir?
This isn't quite as bad as some other smelly in-flight feet incidents, but it's still somewhat baffling. We're gonna go ahead and guess that because the caption calls the man "Sir" and mentions "the entire class" that he is a schoolteacher. Anyway, he quite rationally thought to himself, "I know what I'll do. I'll take off my stinky shoes, and instead of keeping them on the floor where they belong, I'll just place them on the seat next to me."
Then, when he's almost overcome by the smell of his fungal infection, he thinks "I know, I'll just put a mask on". What a kind, considerate man. Thanks, Mister!
How Do You Rate Our Service?
When the airline said wearing masks was compulsory, this isn't quite what they had in mind. This guy in a poop emoji mask may be making a protest about how he feels about the airline or maybe he's just trying to elicit a laugh from his fellow passengers. Or he could just be the new mascot for Poo-nited Airlines or JetPoo Airways. Do you think he wore it for the entire flight?
We can only assume that the plane is a Poo-ing 747, and they were flying to the town of Rectum in the Netherlands. That's a real place!
It Really Sucks Being Hawkeye
Did you know that when The Avengers' Quinjet is out of service, the Marvel superheroes have to fly coach like the rest of us? Clint Barton, aka Hawkeye, gets a particularly rough deal as one of Earth's Mightiest Heroes. First, he has no superpowers, so can't fly like Thor or Iron Man. Second, when he does fly, he's not allowed to bring his bow and arrows on the flight.
Finding a specialist bow and bunch of exploding arrows in a trash can at the airport is the unlikeliest of superhero origin stories, but this was some janitor's lucky day!
Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow
We've all had terrible airplane food, but the in-flight meal on this flight was so bad that some poor lady was left tearing their hair out! Or maybe the turbulence was so bad that her hair just fell out before it turned white from shock! You might have heard the expression "I'd forget my own head if it weren't screwed on," but how can you forget your own hair when it's sewn in?
The other thing to bear in mind is that hair extensions don't come cheap, so this lady would have been kicking herself when she got home and realized her hair-raising mistake.
When You're Lucky Enough To Have Two Seats
This guy is lucky enough to have two seats to himself, so he's going to make sure he uses them in style! First, he's undone his belt to let that belly flow freely. Then, not content with that, he's buttoned (or possibly unzipped) his jeans before going to sleep. Doesn't he realize everyone who walks past can see? And is that a person in the window seat? What about them?
Do they really want your dribbling, snoring, greasy, beer-smelling head next to their lap for the duration of the trip? 8/10 inconsiderate points for this man!
Please Can We Be Friends?
You know when the passenger next to you constantly shifts in their seat and has zero awareness of personal boundaries? You turn your back away and hope they stop fidgeting before, after three-quarters of an hour, you finally decide it's time to say something. So you turn angrily turn round and are greeted by this adorable pup's face saying "Hewwo! I'm Max. Where are you traveling to today? Can we be friends?"
Then, by the time you've reached your destination, you have a new best friend for life and wish that you didn't have to say goodbye to him after all.
And Pigs Might Fly
The idiom 'And pigs might fly' is an ironic statement to suggest something that will never happen, a bit like the term 'when hell freezes over.' But we might have to stop saying pigs might fly after this happy fella took a ride on an airplane instead of his usual hang out on the back of a pick-up truck. He looks so pleased with himself, just look at that face!
To use another couple of animal-based idioms, this guy looks like he's having a whale of a time, or more accurately, is as happy as a pig in s**t!
Brace! Brace! Duck!
If an emergency announcement tells you to 'Brace! Brace!', you'll probably understand what to do. But would you know what to do if they announced 'Duck! Duck!'? The common-sense reaction might be to duck and cower from baggage falling from the overhead lockers, but if you're on this particular flight, it means they're looking for someone's escaped, feathered friend! We don't know if he's a Daffy or a Donald.
Oh, and if you're not from North America and don't know the game "Duck, Duck, Goose" as mentioned in the caption, it's a game of chase for kindergarten kids, sometimes involving kissing!
We Thought Vikings Could Handle Their Alcohol
This is 46-year-old Gudmundur Karl Arthorsson from Iceland. He had been drinking an entire bottle of duty-free alcohol and, two hours into the flight, he grabbed the women who were sitting next to him and started screaming that the plane was going to going to crash. Flight staff and passengers teamed up to gag him and duct tape him to his seat, and the result is here before you.
One passenger wrote: "He drank an entire bottle of some duty-free alcohol. Finally, he started chocking [sic] a guy next to him, and that's when a huge crowd restrained him and tied him up." 14/10 inconsiderate points, Gudmundur.
A Picture Is Worth A Thousand Words
They say a picture is worth a thousand words, so when someone poked their stinky foot and sock between the seats, this little girl's reaction says it all. Come on, people! Show some awareness and think of other people. In fact, thinking about it, this kind of entitlement is everything that's wrong with the world. It starts out with a smelly sock on someone else's seat, and the next thing you know...
The next thing you know, you're taking medical advice from podcasts, or putting pineapple on pizza. It could all have been avoided if this man didn't put his stinky sock on someone else's seat.
Is This The Way To Amarillo?
This guy decided to one better than the airline's elevator music and took a mini keyboard on his flight. Maybe he's a well-known musician getting in some last minute practice before a gig, or perhaps he just decided to brighten up his fellow Southwest Airlines passengers' flights with a little tune or two, or three. Now he's asleep, and we wonder what he's dreaming about. Perhaps it's a new melody?
We don't see any headphones in this picture, but we really hope he had a pair connected to those keys when he played his little recital.
They Do Say That Love Is Blind
These two lovebirds are evidently so in love that they completely forgot they were at the airport and had a love-in right next to the exit. Though the caption suggests they're saying goodbye, we think they're actually reuniting after a long separation. Check out the way she's staring into his eyes––she loves him so much, it doesn't matter that he only stopped off at the gas station for those cheap flowers!
If you're a killjoy who hates to see such public displays of affection, don't worry, they would have been moved on pretty quickly by a security guard who's never been in love.
Spreading The Love
So you've heard of mansplaining, right? Well, how about manspreading or man-sitting? If you haven't heard of it, allow us to explain. See what we did there?! The term refers to men who sit with their legs wide apart––usually on public transport. It's not all men; it's just the insecure ones who have to overcompensate for not measuring up in the bedroom department. It gets worse when you realize the guy next to him is trying to enjoy a movie.
Unless we read the whole scenario wrong, and it's not a man at all. Because if those legs belong to a woman... then we don't know what to think!
Hands Up Who Hasn't Done This
We've all kicked off our shoes and stretched out our legs on a long-haul flight, right? The trick is not to strip your socks off and poke your bare feet out under someone's seat. Oh, and not being photographed doing it! Come to think of it; it's almost as weird to whip out your phone and snap a picture of it. Can you imagine being shown this person's holiday photos?
"Here we are at the Taj Mahal, and this is us getting engaged at the top of the Eiffel Tower. This is the beach house in Mauritius, and this is the guy from seat 29B's gnarly feet."
This Dude Has Life Figured Out
What with all the packing, taxis, and visas, traveling involves a lot of planning ahead. Then, when you get to the airport––usually about twelve hours too early––you have to somehow avoid paying $30 for a three-day-old ham and cheese sandwich. With so much to think about, there's not always time to do your laundry but this guy has everything figured out. As long as you complete the vital first part of your washing, you can always dry your clothes on the airplane!
The added bonus is that you can put the money you saved from not using the dryers at the laundromat towards a two-day-old ham and cheese airport sandwich at your destination!
We've All Been There
The fact that airplane seats even recline this far needs a serious rethink. Sure, it makes one person more comfortable, but it comes at the expense of the person behind them, who becomes super uncomfortable. It's actually a neat analogy for our modern society. But it doesn't end here. Oh no! You see, in a matter of minutes, the uncomfortable guy will follow suit and push his own seat back.
Thus passing the problem on to the inconvenienced person behind him. Who pushes their seat back. Who pushes their seat back. Who pushes their seat back... until there's a neverending cycle of hate and punches are thrown.
He Didn't Put A Foot Wrong
Lots of people don't like the sight of (other people's) feet, and we can understand why. It would be one thing if the owner of these toes had cute feet with perfectly pedicured toenails. But they don't––they have dirty, muddy feet probably from wearing flip-flops. In which case, they should keep their dirty digits out of sight under the cover of socks. Or, just keep them on the floor, where they belong. Just saying.
Think of all those poor flight attendants who have to see this kind of thing almost every day. Instead, they should be more like schoolteachers and have the right to say, "You wouldn't do that at home, so..."
Reach Out And Touch Knee
Kids on flights can go one of a few ways. Very occasionally, they can be angelic little cherubs who don't make a sound and read things called books politely and calmly. But most of the time, these little humans scream and wail and need to watch insanely loud Japanese cartoons on their iPads without headphones. Then there are the curious children, like this one, and they're almost as annoying.
Looks like the guy being poked here at least had a good attitude about the whole ordeal. Maybe it was their kid!
The Nobel Peace Prize Goes To...
Traveling with a kid within earshot on your flight is bad enough, but it could be worse; you could be the parent of one of those screaming bundles of fun! They signed up for at least 18 years of this and can't get rid of them. Well, unless you're this bad dad who came up with a novel way of keeping his baby quiet for the duration of his 12-hour flight!
While the flight staff came and delivered the man a lecture, he should have received a round of applause. And perhaps some the Nobel prize for peace.... peace at last!
Everybody Needs A Shoulder to Sleep On
This happens all the time on commuter trains, but this lady snapped a photo of her flight neighbor napping on her shoulder. What did we do before smartphones? Before the year 2007, this moment would have remained a not very interesting travel story. Nowadays, it's shared around the world as a meme to bring smiles, delight, and roars of laughter. Well, okay, maybe not the roars of laughter bit.
Has this ever happened to you? If so, how did you react? Did you move or just let them sleep on your shoulder? Or was your first thought to grab your phone and take a picture? Of course, it was!
Enjoying The In-Flight Movie?
Again, we file this one under the 'Oblivious to my surroundings' category. That's not to be confused with the 'I'm so important I don't need to think about other people' category, but those file cabinets are right next door to each other and are largely interchangeable. This person is so selfish that while they're watching an in-flight movie, they don't even put two and two together to realize their jacket is inconveniencing the person behind.
Three guesses which movie she's watching. While there's no way of knowing for sure, we went for either Clueless or the Bob Dylan documnetary Don't Look Back.
A Potential Banana Skin
Sometimes it's not just the whole traveling thang that's hectic; sometimes, just disembarking your flight can be stressful. There's so much to remember––like suffocating the entire plane by spraying your newly purchased perfume as you start to descend, unfastening your seatbelt and taking your phone off flight mode the second you touch down, and opening the overhead locker while you're still taxiing along the runway.
Last but not least, you need to check you've tidied up after yourself and not left any valuables behind, like this half-eaten, smushed banana.
Flying Home For Thanksgiving
We hope this poor turkey is not flying home for Thanksgiving! That's when North Americans eat turkeys, whereas the rest of the world––or those that don't celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday––traditionally eat turkey for Christmas. But whichever holiday you celebrate, you can be safe in the knowledge that both holidays are when the whole family travels home and has a massive argument about politics and the way your life has turned out.
Or, this happy guy might have got wind of what we humans had in store for him and booked himself on a flight... to Turkey! After going cold turkey for hours, when offered a drink, he asked if they had any Wild Turkey!
Remember To Stretch Your Legs
You should always remember to stretch your legs on long-haul flights to avoid the potentially life-threatening condition known as deep vein thrombosis. But this overenthusiastic lady took the leg-stretching advice a bit too literally when she started doing a full-on yoga session mid-flight. If she were from California, she'd have brought her goats along with her for a spot of Goat Yoga. There's always one, isn't there!
But instead of being upset, the elder ladies around her seem to be somewhat confused by the yoga... while the guy is totally checking her out.
Can't Afford A First-Class Ticket? No Problemo!
If you've flown first-class, you'll know that having your own private little cabin leaves you feeling refreshed so you can sleep and hit the ground running when you arrive at your destination. However, this clever lady didn't buy first-class tickets, so she just rigged up her own private little cabin seat. All you need is a blanket et voila; your very own first-class seat at no extra cost! It's kinda genius.
If you look closely, she also seems to have brought her own coffee mug from home. She probably brought her own cutlery, too, which makes a change from the usual cheap plastic knives and forks that can't even cut a boiled potato in half.
Would Sir Care For Another Drink?
Some people love flying, while others hate it. Many just hate the monotony and energy-zapping jet lag, while some are genuinely terrified of flying. Of course, some people remedy this by taking a sleeping pill and snoozing the whole journey. But this guy had his own ideas. He and his buddy seem to have brought their own microbrewery with them and, after demolishing bottle after bottle, have slipped gently into the arms of Morpheus.
Still, they're adults and––so long as they didn't disturb their fellow passengers––they can do whatever they like. We just hope they woke up in time to make it to the bathroom!
Never Work With Children And Cheetos
This kid is enjoying his in-flight movie so much that he hasn't even noticed he's covered in Cheeto dust. Everything was fine during the flight, but as soon as he went through immigration, airport security demanded to know what this strange, orange powdery substance was. The poor guy was probably hauled into an interrogation room and searched. All because he wasn't paying attention to his surroundings. It could happen!
The crunch, crunch, crunch noise is the real reason airlines give us headphones, but the moral of the story is to learn to close your mouth while eating!
Raise Your Hand To Call A Steward
If we were handing out awards for the strangest in-flight behavior, this guy wins them all. He obviously snuck his contraband leftovers on board, but when he went to tuck into his pizza, he realized it was cold. "I know how to remedy this" he obviously thought to himself: "I'll just use the reading light to heat it up!" Seven hours and one sore arm later, he had managed to raise the pizza's temperature by one-third of one degree.
If he were a real action/adventurer, he'd know that the best way to reheat a pizza without an oven or microwave is to stuff it under your armpit for 30 minutes.
Can I Bring My Own Snacks?
This gentleman knows how to get around paying $30 for a three-day-old sandwich in the airport. Simply bring your own snacks on board! No, in seriousness, he seems to be transporting a pre-prepared table spread across the country for a special family occasion. But if he does happen to get hungry mid-flight, he can always rip open that plastic wrap and tuck into what looks like tacos and fancy roses made out of tomatoes.
Oh no, it's for a funeral. We've just made fun out of someone on their way to bury a loved one. After everything we've been through, it turns out we're the inconsiderate ones. 18/10 inconsiderate points for us!
This Is Your Pilot, Jim-Bob Speaking
We guess this pilot may be Australian, as those guys are famously some of the most laid-back people on earth. We're not sure if this photo was taken pre-flight or during the flight but either way, can you imagine the announcement? "Errr... yeah, hey dudes and dudettes, well we were mindin' our own business chilling' at 20,000 feet when me and me bro'––his name's Dogg––just seen some ultra-gnarly weather up ahead..."
He continues: "You may experience some turbulence, but don't worry––we think this flying baked bean can is lightning proof. I can't say for certain as it's my first time in a cockpit. In the meantime, please try not to soil your pants. Have a groovy flight!"