A plane passenger has been praised for pushing forward and making a dash for the exit when their airplane landed.
In a post on Reddit‘s popular r/amithea****** subreddit, user RPO-Shavo explained what happened: “I had a flight yesterday that got delayed, so I had a really tight window to make my connecting flight (like less than 10 minutes). I knew I was gonna basically just have to sprint off the plane and directly to my next gate. Unfortunately, my seat was in the very very back of the (small) plane.”
As the seatbelt light turned off, the traveler made a move that resulted in backlash from a fellow passenger. “I jumped out of my seat with my bag and moved toward the front of the plane as fast as I could. I didn’t shove anyone out of the way, but I did ask to squeeze by a few people, apologizing and explaining that I had a very tight connection. Everyone was willing to let me get through,” they explained.
Despite successfully making their way to the front of the plane without major disturbance, the situation took a turn when another passenger voiced their discontent.
“Once I got to the door, some guy behind me started yelling that I ‘should just wait my turn’ since there’s lots of people with tight connections,” the Redditor explained. “I explained that I didn’t really have time to compare everyone’s schedules, but he maintained that I was being an a****** and should have just waited my turn.”
Turning to the internet, they asked: “AITA [am I the a******] for cutting in line when getting off? Is this some unwritten rule of plane etiquette I didn’t know about? I would understand if I was shoving people aside or cutting people who were waiting, but I don’t see what’s wrong with moving forward in an empty aisle.”
Elizabeth Wyse, editorial director of Debretts etiquette coaching company, told Newsweek: “Queuing to get off the airplane can be very fraught; everyone is anxious to get off the plane, and there is a general scramble to retrieve bags as soon as the seatbelt lights are turned off.”
But she explained that the amount of time you gain, especially in a large international airport, is usually minimal.
“The sense of urgency probably has more to do with a desire to free yourself from the claustrophobic confinement of the airplane cabin,” she explained. But where there is a connecting flight, like in the case of the Redditor, things are a little different.
“If someone is in a panic because of a tight flight connection—and this can be an extremely stressful predicament—it is only reasonable and courteous to stand aside and let them jump the queue and squeeze past,” she said. “Insisting that everyone should wait their turn is officious, dogmatic and unsympathetic.”
In hundreds of replies on Reddit, people seemed to agree with Wyse.
One commenter said: “NTA [not the a******]. Getting on and off an airplane is already set up in the slowest and stupidest way possible. That guy is not striking a blow for justice by insisting that you rigidly adhere to it at the expense of missing your next flight.”
Another Reddit user agreed and wrote: “That guy? Forget him. If you missed your flight, he’d be ‘gee, that’s too bad,’ and then go about his day. His opinion does not matter.”
Above all though, Wyse explained that everyone would find flying easier if we were all a little calmer.
“The whole cramped, stressful experience of flying, especially landing and disembarking, will be much improved if everyone tries to adopt a relaxed demeanor and people don’t become strident about defending their own position,” she said. “It goes without saying that, as you leave the airplane, you should accept that people in the seats in front of you should be allowed to disembark ahead of you, and you should do your best to help them—for example assisting with extracting bags from the overhead lockers.”
Newsweek reached out to RPO-Shavo via Reddit for comment.