SSSS – not on our boarding pass please!

Have you ever wondered about those cryptic letters on your airline boarding passes? Now we are sure you are more than familiar with the flight class indicated on the pass. And you’d also be aware of the airport codes in case you fly to the wrong city with the same name (remember this post?).

Now if this article is accurate, then having the letters ‘SSSS’ printed on your boarding pass would be a big no no. Now just in case you did not read the article, let us summarize it for you. This code essentially identifies you for additional security checks before you board the aircraft. It means you will be Sadly Suffering Security Screening… though that’s not what it’s suppose to mean… heheh. Hey, this was the best we could come up with. Applause please.

Of course this was making reference the folks traveling to and from the US. But before you snicker at the thought that this does not affect you because you are not stateside, think again. You never know if this will be implemented in a different form elsewhere. Wonder why the security check folks ask for your boarding passes all the time even after you’ve been id checked? Perhaps in other airports there are similar codes which have been surreptiously incorporated onto your boarding pass without you ever noticing? Have we gotten you paranoid now?

Look out for strange and indecipherable codes on your boarding pass the next time. What did you find peculiar?

Fly like you were at home

Once more, we are witnessing ever increasing juxtapose. In the airline business of course! Time to set aside all these bad press recently and dream a little. Will you pay for the opportunity to fly in what is touted as the world most advanced airline seat? One that makes you feel at home, as if you were lying on your own bed? Assuming you love you own bed in the first place.

Well this article shared how high tech has transformed the way priority passengers will be treated to when they need twenty winks while flying to their destination(s).

You might have read in our past posts (here and here) about futuristic developments when it comes to the flying experience. In those articles we had read, the common thread is appears to suggest how airlines can fete passengers to a new level of comfort. Our view? It is more of an approach to “up trade” the flying experience for the ones with the means to pay. Which means it is not applicable to most of us.

No. This is not a 99% rant. That’s so passe.

Rather this is an examination of the travel equivalent of the ‘misery index’. One where it is postulated that airlines sets the travel conditions to be so onerous that one would simply pay to get out of that situation. Checked bags? Pay. Choose seats? Pay. To which some might throw their hands up; heck with all of this, just buy the full fare ticket. Or better, since it may be a long flight – perhaps buy that business class seat that turns into a bed?

Will you fall for this ruse? If you had the means, would you pay to sleep on the plane as if it was your bed?

Should there be dress codes on planes?

A couple of months back, we read about this furore over how United offloaded two girls for wearing leggings (read here for the article). The official reasons for this was : they were traveling using company benefits and needed to adhere to a specific dress code.

We are not debating this.

Rather, we are wondering aloud whether there should be any form of dress code at all for folks in general getting onto a plane. Recall we wrote about etiquettes (here)? Granted it was about the private jets but should not the same principles apply? Yes you may still wear large sunglasses to appear mysterious, although not at security though. They want to look you in the eye… heheh.

Certainly one would not dress skimpy like one’s at the beach, just because one’s on a plane heading to an island for the sun & sand right? And we are certainly not advocating to be dressed to the nines for a flight, as if it was a gala function one’s attending too. On the one hand you have restaurants, clubs and even some hotels that impose dress codes for entry. On the other one would not regulate how people dress when taking the bus…

So the question remains. Should there be dress codes imposed? What do you think?

So, is flying taking the bus or more like going to a restaurant? Does it even make sense to have this comparison? What has have been the worst of dressing that you’ve seen in your flight experiences?

UPDATE: we recently read that there are fine print T&Cs in your flight booking that make reference to appropriate dress. Heheh… guess it was there all along just not something “significant” enough to enforce.

Don’t eat airline food anymore?

Would you listen to a celebrity chef cum reality TV star cum restauranteur? For one thing, the quoted person in this article suggests that he himself will not touch airline food. Apparently from his own wealth of experience working for some of the most prestigious airlines in the world, he knows enough to avoid it.

Does this kind of review(s) influence you?

Now one thing that the above article does not provide are concrete reasons from who we’d refer to as a so-called social influencer. He simply referred to the fact he knows where the airline food has been and how long it took before getting on the plane with the passengers. Which honestly is the same with all pre-cooked meals anyway…so what’s new? It just need to be served and consumed within a certain number of hours when stored at the appropriate temperature and conditions.

You might recall we wrote a little post about gorgeous airline food and shared with you some of those we had the privilege of sampling at 30,000+ feet in the air. At that rarefied air, food taste different than you are back on planet earth we asserted and convinced you (we hope). The meal(s) you have onboard would thus be something you’d likely reject/avoid on a daily basis.

You might also recall yet another post we wrote (here) where we pointed out that the water in the tanks of the planes potentially seethe with undesirables… so take the coffee and tea at your own risk we are told! Stick with bottled and canned drinks we guess. Perhaps that’s the excuse to be sanitized with lots of alcohol, our preferred one’s from Chianti (here). Heheh.

Would a social influencer sway you? Are all of these sufficient to convince you never to take airline meals ever again?

Flying like taking a bus?

Have you ever been on a flight that seems or is overbooked? What if one were told that the only way to fly was to stand, like in taking a bus? Would you take the flight? If this story is to be believed, there were potentially 7 passengers who stood for 3½hours while they flew to their destination.

Ok ok, today we are not naming or shaming any airline.

The point to get your attention is how we have seemingly made flying a central means of transport when it comes to leisure travel. Statistics are hard to believe on this subject area. They are fraught with assumptions, presumptions and guess work all thrown into a melange. So let’s just use them as a guide and apply some common sense.

If one is to believe this article, half the world flew in 2015.

Actually if you think about it, and the article does point that out – is that you would count more than once if you had a connecting flight. And we’d add that if you are a frequent flyer, you’d add to the ‘number of people who flew’ statistic too. Many times! You might recall that we had written too about the number of people traveling (here and here).

So, a little correction is due. It is NOT the equivalent of the world’s population that will be flying by 2035. Rather, there will be 7 billion flights taken by that time. Just like there are many millions of commuters on trains and buses in a year, it appears flying will indeed become just like taking the bus.

Ok, time to go take the bus flight.

A beery good drink at 35,000ft

You might recall that we mentioned briefly in our post on gorgeous airline food (read here) that one’s sense of taste appears to be ‘dumbed’ down from the altitude (and perhaps attitude) and also the high decibel sound in the cabin.

And you might also have read that, when flying try to avoid drinking alcholic beverages.

What if the airline you were flying with tells you they have brewed a fine draft that has been crafted to taste its best at 35,000 feet in the air? The daily mail’s article tells that this is being served to first and business class passengers for selected flights between March and April. So by now, this offer is over…

But today the point of our post is not how to have a beery good drink 10km up in the atmosphere.

There is much debate about the affects of alcohol on the health of passengers when flying. Some cited research suggests that with low air pressure from the altitude, our blood is effectived thinned. This is said to accentuate the affects of alcohol. Others disagreeing, believe that the air with lower oxygen level leaves less of this vital element in your brain leading to intoxication. Either way, perhaps this might explain why people get inebriated and exhibit anti social behavior when flying?

A spate of incidents on planes in the last 12 months had prompted some airports to even consider banning alcohol not just on planes but also in the terminal itself! We had wrote previously about badly behaved passengers.

We have a tipple or two when we fly. Is a drink while flying ok? What do you think?