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I’m sure that, like me, you’re sick of reading stories and watching videos of unruly passengers in airports and in the sky. You would think that after being under lockdown for so long, passengers would be so appreciative of being able to fly again, but unfortunately it’s been the opposite. And it’s been more than just a few bad apples.

I’ve written several posts about some of the most egregious incidents like this Rocky-style fight at an American Airlines check-in counter in Miami, and the drunk 22-year-old drunk punk who inappropriately touched two female flight attendants and took a swing at a flight attendant before being duct taped to a seat on a Frontier Airlines flight from Philadelphia to Miami. Here’s that video.

And perhaps the most disturbing one of all was the irate man who threatened gate agents at Miami International Airport. Here’s the video.

I haven’t flown very much this year but on half of my flights, I’ve witnessed some really abnormal and poor behavior firsthand. I wrote about the most ridiculous one here. Yep, that one took place in Miami International as well.

According to the New York Times, there was a hearing at the House yesterday about air rage in the skies. “During the hearing, Sara Nelson, the president of the Association of Flight Attendants union, testified that the F.A.A. had logged 4,284 “unruly passenger reports” since January. About three-quarters of them were related to wearing masks on planes, she said; 61 percent of disruptive passengers also used racist, sexist or homophobic slurs, she said. “If we continue at this rate, there may be more incidents in 2021 than in the entire history of aviation,” Ms. Nelson said.”

I’ve done multiple TV interviews recently and I was asked a couple of weeks ago by CBS Los Angeles, when the TSA doubled their mask fines (they range between $500 to $3,000) to try and curb noncompliance, whether such measures would work. I replied that it wasn’t going to do a damn thing. What the FAA should be doing is making the penalties for offenders much stronger. What will make these people stop is arresting them and most importantly, banning them, not just from the airline they were on but from all airlines. If the airlines shared their blacklist database, you would see passengers settle down.

Well, guess what? Delta Air Lines is now onboard with a plan like this. According to a leaked memo in the New York Times: “Delta Air Lines is urging airlines to respond to the extraordinary surge in unruly behavior in the skies by creating a national “no fly” list of barred customers.”

The best part of the memo is this: “We’ve also asked other airlines to share their ‘no fly’ list to further protect airline employees across the industry — something we know is top of mind for you as well,” wrote Kristen Manion Taylor, Delta’s senior vice president of in-flight services. “A list of banned customers doesn’t work as well if that customer can fly with another airline.”

Kristen is exactly right. So is Sara Nelson who “urged the creation of a central list of passengers who would be barred from flying for a set period, with airlines given access to it.” Let’s just hope that set period is for at least a couple of years.

I can almost guarantee that if a passenger knows that if they act up, they’re not going to be able to get to where they’re trying to go by air unless they rent a private jet, especially if it’s a return trip, then they will shut up and stop acting like a jerk. Pretty sure they don’t want to have to take the train, bus, car, a boat or some other means of transportation.

Do you agree?

15 Comments On "The Only Way To Get Airplane Passengers To Behave"
  1. Jim Suss|

    If people can’t control themselves while flying, they do not deserve the privilege of being allowed on any aircraft. For the rest of their lives. You screw it up, you experience the consequences. “But I travel for work”, they’ll say. “Not by plane. Take a bus. You screwed yourself”.

  2. Ronald Smith|

    I agree 100% Johnny. I am disgusted with this type of behavior not only on airplanes but on our highways and other locations. Maybe the covid year created some of this but I also believe the aftermath of the 2020 riots was influential. The defund the police mentality influenced this aggressive behavior and disregard for rules and regulations. I can see in southern California how local police, sheriffs, CHP, etc. have backed off traffic enforcement as you have probably seen also. This permeates all aspects of our society. Really enjoy your input.

  3. Shar|

    I totally agree. This should have been addressed & a law implemented a year ago. First, arrest them, fine them heavily, then put them on the ‘No Fly’ list for the next 5 years! America is totally out of control on every level. Its damn time there are consequences for these demented angry people that cant control their child-like or barbaric behavior!! This is NOT acceptable! Quit dragging your feet lawmakers & the airline industry. Will it take an airplane crash to wake up? Invest in us other passengers safety, not these demented crazy clowns that need to be in a physc ward!!

  4. Lori F.|

    I absolutely agree! These people should definitely be arrested and put on a “no fly” list. All airline employees should feel safe going to work.

  5. SMS|

    How about a one year loss of flying privileges coupled with mandated anger management

  6. Marlin Yoder|

    I think everyone has gotten to grouchy, including travel bloggers!

  7. Raul|

    I believe, the thing you’re asking for will put the airline’s slowly out of business. People are pushing back. People are tired of the Karen’s and government telling them what to.

    1. Marlin Yoder|


  8. Shahryar Saigol|

    Mandatory breathalyser tests.

  9. Teresa Lopez|

    I think it is interesting that even though the writer says he travelled to over 20 countries in the last year, all the incidents he mentioned were in the US. I live in Mexico and that is even on the news here. It doesn´t HAPPEN here, though. And all the Karen´s are mostly in the US, though there are a FEW sprinkled here and there. There is something profoundly wrong with the way people in the US treat each other. I hope that can be reversed because it only seems to be getting worse.

    1. Johnny Jet|

      It’s political. Donald Trump pinned us all against each other

      1. Marti|

        After a leftist biased comment like that, cancel your show and comments from my life. The mask mandates by uninformed politicians is what pits us against one another. Trump is the one who got the ‘vaccine’ process from ten years to one, lowest unemployment ever, lowest taxes for decades, curtailed illegal immigration at the border, cut illegal drugs coming into the country, none of which you give him credit for. The masks don’t work, the shots don’t work, stripping people’s right to choose is what Nazi Germany did and look how that turned out. Do some research by listening to all those cancelled by this administration before blaming Trump for our rebelliousness. That just makes you sound ignorant.

        1. Marlin Yoder|

          You said what I was thinking, I laugh when I hear people say the not wearing masks is because Trump made it political, when we all know that wearing them is political as well. You can find many pictures of liberal politicians not wearing masks at events, till they get to the photo ops, then the masks magically come out. Many Hollywood type events it happens as well.

          Last November Fauci was on video stating that wearing masks was being “paranoid”. Google it, it’s not hard to find.

  10. Laurie D.|

    It appears that alcohol is a major culprit in these disruptions so perhaps that needs to be addressed. Apparently at least one of those unruly passengers was showing signs of inebriation before he actually boarded, yet he was still allowed to board!
    The short term vacation industry has also seen a decline in the way people act at vacation rentals. Many guests are rowdy and disruptive and leave damage in their wake, as well as many appear to have a sense of entitlement and request refunds for the slightest things that they can find. Perhaps a large number of the people traveling now are different than before Covid or maybe the sane traveller’s are just being outnumbered at the moment as the majority of sane people are continuing to stay home and safe?

  11. Sa|

    Eventho you have the right to your opinion in the USA, I find your comment regarding former President Trump to be offensive and unprofessional! I’m a military veteran that fought so that you and many others could enjoy and practise those rights in our country. My father, a decorated WW II vet, taught us to “engage your brain before you speak”. Great advice to heed to prevent being labeled as a fool!

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