Who’s the Worst Passenger on a Plane? Science Finds the Answer
Life + Money

Who’s the Worst Passenger on a Plane? Science Finds the Answer

Reuters/Issei Kato

Between cramped seats and over-priced “food,” there’s little to enjoy about air travel these days.

The experience tends to get worse around the holidays, when planes are crowded with passengers who don’t travel often and don’t know or don’t care to follow common airline etiquette.

The worst such offender, according to an Expedia study released Thursday, is the “rear seat kicker,” selected by 61 percent of passengers as the most aggravating co-passenger.

Related: Here’s How Much Cheaper Thanksgiving Travel Will Be This Year

Other offenders at the top of the list were “inattentive parents,” whose inability to control their children bothered 59 percent of passengers. Tied for third place and disliked by half of all passengers were the “aromatic passenger,” who exhibits poor hygiene or gives off a strong smell, and the “audio insensitive,” who talks or plays media too loudly.

“Planes continue to fly full, never more so than during this season, when millions of Americans will fly to be with their families for the holidays,” John Morrey, vice president and general manager of Expedia, said in a statement. “Inside a packed plane at 30,000 feet, both good behavior and bad behavior are amplified.”

“The Boozer” irritates 45 percent of passengers and the “Chatty Cathy” is disliked by 43 percent of travelers.

In general, passengers are OK with a bit of small talk, but “prefer to keep to themselves for most of the flight.” More than a third of those surveyed said they would pay extra to be seated in a designated “quite zone” if the airline offered one.