Are travelers ruder today?

Trip Start Jan 30, 2007
Trip End Dec 31, 2011

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Flag of United States  , New York
Thursday, November 27, 2008

I've noticed in recent years that fellow travelers often leave behind their manners while traveling.
Sure, when abroad, or away from home, you are also away from the familiar constraints and social environment. Which means you can do something, without such severe consequences. It's easy, because you are moving on, and don't have a relationship with that place.

Combine it with crowds, particularly at holiday time, changeable weather, the stress of travel and financial worries, and you have a recipe for travel-rage.

As this new survey suggests:

Tis the season of good will to all men - apart from fellow travelers, according to a survey.

The online poll by TripAdvisor showed that 83 per cent of 1100 travelers believed air travellers had become ruder in the past decade, and 24 per cent said travelers were even ruder during the holiday period.

But when it came to the most irritating fellow travelers, 59 per cent said oblivious parents who let their children run wild were the most annoying air travelers, while 54 per cent picked out travelers with offensive body odour.

People who reclined their seat on planes during the meal service and travelers who talked nonstop despite getting clear signals that conversation was not wanted were also on the annoying list.

"The people traveling with kids and the people traveling without them tend to be equally vocal about how annoying the other group is," said TripAdvisor spokeswoman Michele Perry.

"Perhaps it's due to more kids flying during the holidays - or, rather, more parents unaccustomed to flying with their kids taking to the air."

Travelers who talk on mobile phones at full voice while strolling through the airport, and people who were rude to airline staff also came close to the top of the list of rudest travelers.

The survey found that 80 per cent of respondents thought allowing the use of mobile phones on planes would make people even ruder.

But most travelers were not afraid of speaking up when a fellow travelers was out of line with 68 per cent of respondents saying they had asked another traveler to stop doing something rude.

But 35 per cent said flight attendant should get involved when someone's bad behavior bothers several people.
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