10 Types of Frequent Flyers

I have been flying every month for my job since 2009. I don’t know how many miles that adds up to but I do know that it’s now the year 2019. Math isn’t my strong suit, but even I can do the math on that one. Suffice it to say, I have learned a few things over the years with numero uno being that I much prefer flying first class to coach and I can’t understand why my employer won’t spring for it. The only way this chick is getting first class is when the free upgrade fairy throws me a bone once in a blue moon. Those moments are the most glorious and you bet your ass I happily sip the free champagne all the way to my destination.

Despite my love for first class accommodations, there are a lot of things I dislike about flying. Actually, I dislike most of the entire flying experience. However, lucky for me I really, really enjoy people watching. I am an unusually observant person by nature and therefore believe people watching to be the greatest pastime ever. And let me tell you something, the airport is one of the best people watching locations of them all. Over the years, I’ve come to realize there are certain “types” of people that you may or may not have had the pleasure of finding yourself seated next to on the 7103 out of O’Hare. Now, this is not a comprehensive list. Better to save a few for part 2.

The Chatty Cathy. Probably my least favorite. They need to begin every online seat assignment map with a questionnaire. “Do you like to chat with strangers?” An answer of ‘yes’ sends you immediately to a special section in the back of the airplane with all the other Chatty Cathies where they can chat it up about their daughter’s beautiful wedding in Pittsburgh this weekend or the bender they just got off of from a weekend in Vegas with their gal pals. This may seem contradictory to my statement above about people watching. While I am curious about people, I am not curious enough to actually want to chat with them for several hours at a time.

flying golden girls GIF by TV Land

The 21 Questions Dude. This is different from the Chatty Cathy. This person wants answers and this person wants them now. “Whatcha doing? Where ya going? Where ya been? Where do you live? How long you lived there? What’s there to do in Iowa!?! What do you do for work?” And on and on and on it goes. There’s a reason I have my earbuds in, Bill. Why don’t you know that earbuds are THE universal airplane etiquette symbol for don’t talk to me? The 21 Questions Dude would also benefit from the questionnaire in the above.

drinks airplane GIF by Duracell

The Grandpa. I always hope to get seated next to this man. He’s polite, smells nice, is neatly groomed, will help you with your bag, is pleasant but not too chatty. The ideal seat partner.

old man smile GIF by F*CK, THAT'S DELICIOUS

The Sleeper. I don’t know what it is about airplanes, but there is something about them that just puts people to sleep like newborn babies – except the actual newborn babies. Now, the sleeper can be broken down into several sub categories.

travel plane GIF by joecappa

A.) The Snoring Sleeper. Poor guy’s (it’s always a guy) all tuckered out and clearly in a deep slumber. I hope he’s dreaming that he’s on his way to Maui instead of Cedar Rapids.

Season 4 Church GIF

B.) The Gassy Sleeper. If you’ve been in a seat next to this person, you know how brutal it can be.

dislike do not want GIF

C.) The Head Bob Sleeper. You know the one. One minute they’re asleep, only to be brutally awakened by an epic head bob and BAM! Awake again…and looking around to see who witnessed said head bob. I, myself, have personally been victimized by the head bob so I have totally been that frequent flyer. Let’s just hope I have never been the sleeper in A or B.

tired zzz GIF

The Complicated Shoe Girl. Ugh. There’s one in every crowd. I get wanting to look cute. Most of my site is dedicated to fashion, but going through airport security is not the time or place for a fashion show. TSA is a ‘no nonsense’ zone. Save the lace-up boots and shoes with 17 buckles for your final destination. I know you checked a bag, girl. This girl likely also sends her carry on through the x-ray machine with a full water bottle.

old navy lol GIF by ADWEEK

The Rubberneck. Please bring your own entertainment next time. I know my Netflix show is entertaining, but have you come aboard completely unprepared? Next time, I might offer them an ear bud just see what happens. Except what if they accept? EW!

tonight show ew GIF by The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon

The Lady with a Toddler. Before you come at me, please hear me through. I get it. Toddlers can be unpredictable and you’re trying your best to occupy them. My irritation however, generally comes from the parent, not the toddler. Is it really necessary to ask the kid in a high pitched baby voice the following series of questions: “Who’s gonna fly on an airplane? You? You gonna fly on the airplane? Yes you are! Who’s gonna fly on the airplane?” I can only take about 15 minutes of this repeated questioning before I feel the irritation to start to bubble in my belly. Me: “SHE IS!!! SHE IS GOING TO FLY ON THE AIRPLANE. WE ALL ARE! That’s why we are all crammed in here like uncomfortable sardines with complete strangers. To fly on an airplane!!”

rude old lady GIF

Have you encountered any of these frequent flyers?

See ya on the next post.

-The Chic(ish) Chick

*All gifs sourced via giphy.com

If you liked this post, you may also enjoy:

Airline Etiquette 101, The Struggle is Real for a Frequent Flyer and 8 Reasons You Should Fly First Class



  1. naturallytoddlerapproved
    April 2, 2019 / 8:53 am

    OMG So true (and hilariously put)!

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