Exposed: Things You Might Not Know About Airlines

 

  1. Flight attendants are trained to deliver babies on aeroplanes

 

Photo by Turkish Arlines

A birth taking place on an aircraft is highly improbable due to the strict travelling regulations. Nonetheless, flight attendants are given midwifery training during their first weeks on the job. They also have access to medical professionals over the phone in case such an emergency might occur.  And in the case this unlikely event might happen, they are capable of delivering a baby 35000 feet in the air.

 

 

  1. Pilots can’t eat the same meal and aren’t allowed to eat within an hour of each other

 

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Because of the risk of food poisoning, pilots are restricted from having the same meal. They must also wait at least one hour after the other has finished his meal before he can eat. That’s because if one of them gets sick, the other must be able to take control of the aeroplane and complete the journey safely.

  1. Don’t drink the water they serve on aeroplanes

Don't drink water on planes

 

 

While bottled water is safe to drink, if you just request a glass of water – that comes out of the plane’s water tank. Many studies have shown that it can contain up to 100 times more bacteria than the allowed limit. So if don’t want to catch dangerous bacteria like e-Coli, we strongly recommend to only drink bottled water. It’s also good to know that coffee and other hot beverages are made with the same water – so unless you really need a coffee, it’s probably best to stay away from those too.

  1. It’s not as clean as you might think

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Although aeroplanes are cleaned between flights, some surfaces might still have bacteria on them. For that reason, it’s very important to clean the trays before using them. Also, don’t walk on the carpet without shoes on – it’s not very hygienic. Just think how many people walk over it in just one flight. Blankets and pillows aren’t changed in between flights either.

  1. Dim Lights aren’t meant for you to have a good night’s sleep 

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In fact, lights are dimmed when daylight fades so your eyes can adjust to seeing in the dark. Why? Because you have to be prepared in case of an emergency evacuation. You must be able to quickly identify the nearest exit, follow the floor lights and help others next to you.

 

  1. Trays have to be lifted during take-off and landing so people can escape more easily

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We have all wondered why the flight attendants insist we put up our trays when taking off and landing. And you have to admit that at least once you thought you’ll get away without doing it – but then got scolded for trying. Well, they actually have to be put up so the people sitting next to you don’t get trapped in case something goes wrong. And shutters must be up in case of a fire, so firefighters can see where passengers are and what the situation is. Now that you know this, you will probably gladly put them up next time you’re flying, right?

  1. Animals don’t exactly get the best treatment on planes

Dont take pets on planes

 

You might want to think twice about bringing your pet on holiday when travelling by plane. Although airlines don’t purposely try to harm them, pets are left unattended during the entire flight. They can get very cold or overheat, they might get sick and they have nowhere to pee either. If you think it’s an 8-hour flight is long for you, imagine how your dog must feel! If you really love your pet friends, it’s best to just leave them home with someone to look after them.

 

  1. Being rude to the staff will get you in trouble

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Make sure you’re on your best behaviour when going on an aeroplane. Don’t be rude to the airport staff or flight attendants, as you might regret it. If you’re frequent fliers, they can even ‘stain’ your travel record by categorising you as a problem customer. And if you refuse to cooperate and lose your temper on board, they can even put you in restraints and hand you over to the authorities at landing. Now that’s something you really want to avoid.

  1. Save Money on tickets by booking on certain dates

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This subject has been debated by many, and everyone has their own opinion about when the ideal time to book is. But according to the 2017 Global Air Travel Outlook, it seems Sunday is the best day to book and Friday is the worst, since most business travel bookings are made then. The general rule though is to book as far as you can in advance, allowing at least a month before travelling.

 

  1. Flight Overbooked? – Don’t accept the first offer

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Did you know that British Airways admitted to overbooking almost half a million seats in a single year? It’s a strategy to boost profits as they rely on people not showing up for their flight. This seems to be an increasing problem, with more and more people being forcefully removed from aeroplanes (We all remember the doctor who was dragged off United Airlines with a bleeding nose right?). If this were to happen to you, don’t accept the first offer they make for giving up your seat. That is usually around £200, but they will continue to raise the amount until people are willing to accept it. It can get to over £1000, depending on your ticket price and other circumstances.

  1. Flight Cancelled on a Non-refundable ticket? – You can still get compensation


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Yes, even if you bought a non-refundable fare, if a flight has been cancelled – airlines are obliged to refund you. If you can’t get a refund, then most airlines would let you change your travel dates at no extra cost or offer you a voucher. Sure, some airlines’ customer services are as helpful as a pen with no ink but be polite and persistent, and you can make it happen!

 

  1. Each Commercial Flight is struck by lightning at least once per year

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As scary as that sounds, it’s not generally dangerous for aircraft. They have been carefully engineered for lightning protection. It would be uncomfortable indeed for passengers, as they would hear a very loud noise and see a light flashing, but that’s about it. So rest assured next time you’re flying in bad weather, as this is one less thing you have to worry about.

  1. They fly with a low level of fuel to keep their costs low

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Airlines don’t like spending money unnecessarily. Carrying a full tank of fuel is very expensive for planes, as it increases their fuel consumption. Thus, they only carry enough fuel to make it to their destination. In Britain, they are only required to have 30 minutes’ worth of extra fuel, in case of delays.

 

  1. Pilots fall asleep while flying

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You might have heard this rumour before, and as frightening as it sounds, it’s true. Pilots are often required to work long shifts and can get very tired. In a survey conducted by Balpa on 500 pilots, over half them admitted they fell asleep at least once. And of those, 56% said they woke up to find the other pilot asleep as well. These frightening statistics have led to campaigning for changes to the flight-time regulations. 43% said their abilities had been compromised at least once a month in the past 6 months by fatigue. And almost half said pilot tiredness is the biggest threat to safety – three times more than any other threat.

 

  1. Corpse on a plane

 

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Eerie! But with over 8 million people flying each day, it’s hard not to have such incidents. Unfortunately, people do die of heart attacks and other such conditions while on board of an aeroplane. Before, passengers who died on the flight would be given sunglasses, a blanket and a drink – if no one noticed the deceased. This unorthodox method was used to keep passengers calm until landing. Nowadays, they are moved to first class when available and covered with a blanket. Some airlines have now featured a cupboard for deceased passengers.

 

 

 

 

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