People Share Their Worst Airline Experiences

Airline horror stories: everyone has one or two. What’s your worst? If you’ve ever flown, then you’ll be able to identify with these travelers who had awful experiences with airlines. “Flying the friendly skies?” Not so much.

Read on for some amazingly awful air travel tales. From missed connecting flights to lost luggage and everything in between, you’ll get frustrated just reading these stories! You might even reconsider that trip you’ve been planning.

They Tried To Be Kind, And That Was A Mistake

denver-airport
Joshua Sukoff/Unsplash
Joshua Sukoff/Unsplash

Reddit user Stabfacenotback was trying to be a nice guy in the midst of a winter storm but it didn’t end up paying off for him. He recalls, “Flying from MSP to Denver. Winter storm, I would be late. Fine. Well, since I really wasn’t in a hurry, I let everyone go in line before me at the airline desk so they could correct their connecting flights. I mean, I was at my destination. It sucks pretty bad when you miss your connection, so I was being totally empathetic to their urgency. It was more important than mine because I already had my travel connection in place. Right? Well, by the time I got to the front of the line, the airline baggage handler’s shift ended. My skis were locked in holding and there was NO ONE, NO WAY, NO HOW, I could get my skis.”

They continued, “By the time I did everything I could to get my skis, I still couldn’t get my skis and I missed the shuttle anyway plus HWY 70 was closed. So I had to spend the night in the airport. What I learned: It doesn’t pay to be nice. Airports specifically put armrests on chairs to prevent people from sleeping laying across the chairs, and Denver airport does a hell of a lot of floor cleaning overnight.”

So Close, Yet So Far

worst-airline-stories-092
NeONBRAND/Unsplash
NeONBRAND/Unsplash

Reddit user techniforus had a trip home that was frustrating, to say the least. But it was even worse for the passenger behind him! They recall: “When I was coming back from Cozumel there was a storm in the Twin Cities so we couldn’t land there. We circled for a while before having to land in Bemidji. We were on the ground in Bemidji for about four hours. That certainly made the flight suck more than it normally would. With extra time circling, I think we were six and a half hours late in total.”

They continued, “It didn’t suck for us nearly as much as the guy in the seat behind mine. He lived in Bemidji. He could see his house and his friend’s house just before we touched down there. Now you’d think this would be a good turn of events for him — except they had no customs in Bemidji. He couldn’t deplane. He called his friend from the plane to tell him just how late he’d be. It’s a four hour drive down to the cities. We saw his friend drive down to pick him up as we sat there on the runway.”

Stuck Sweating In A Plane

hot-airplane
Bao Menglong/Unsplash
Bao Menglong/Unsplash

Reddit user Savage_1806 had an awful ending to a Vegas trip. She recalls, “I was flying back from Vegas with a friend from a Bachelorette party. We got to the airport around 9:30 am, and our plane was due to leave at 10:45 or so. So we board and its the middle of June. 115 outside, but on the tarmac easily 120 or more. They scoot back from the gate and just as we get to the runway, the engine dies. So we pull back up to the gate and wait with absolutely no AIR CONDITIONING. We do not have water, ice, nothing to help with the heat.”

“We wait in the plane for over an hour, we are sweating some people are freaking out demanding to be let off which they refuse to let us off. A lady passes out, some people start getting nosebleeds. It was on the verge of becoming a riot. Towards the middle of the plane, some college students started playing ‘I Believe I Can Fly’, by R. Kelly. We all started to sing along, our spirits lifted and after 2 hours being stuck in there, they let us off the plane. So we wait for another hour or two in the airport waiting for another plane to fly us home. We get on, about 3/4 of the people return. We board, and they start moving us back from the gate, and BAM it DIES!!!!!!! This time we wait another 1.5 hours until they let us off the plane. We wait, we make phone calls, we yell. A 3rd plane comes rolling up, it’s air-conditioned and glorious. We pull back from the gate with less than half the previous occupants. We get in the air and land. NEVER AGAIN!!!”

Flying in Circles With Nowhere To Land

airline-flying-circles
Yury Orlov/Unsplash
Yury Orlov/Unsplash

Spader1 shared on Reddit their experience of not being able to touch down anywhere. They said: “30 minutes into a flight from Zurich to Philadelphia we were told that the main pressurization system had gone bad, and even though the backup would work just fine, we couldn’t cross the Atlantic on the backup. So we circled over the UK for three hours to become light enough to land in Manchester.”

But wait, it gets worse… “Because the flight was from Switzerland to the US, we weren’t allowed to deplane in Manchester. So we sat there for another three hours. Then, we were cleared to fly to Boston, not PHL, because the crew had to change or something of that sort. So we flew to BOS. Again, we weren’t allowed to deplane. After an hour and a half in BOS we finally made our way to PHL. What was supposed to be an 8-1/2 hour flight became like 18 hours.”

Who Knew That Giant Teddy Bear Would Come In Handy?

worst-airline-stories-009
Bambi Corro/Unsplash
Bambi Corro/Unsplash

This story isn’t about a flight delay– it’s much scarier than that. Reddit user mrcchapman shares: “Coming in to land at Dulles (Washington DC), and the guy in the opposite aisle starts groaning really loudly. Immediately I turn to look, and he’s not just groaning – he’s wailing, his body is convulsing, and he’s smashing his head into the chair directly in front of him. The passenger next to him is freaked out and terrified. Now, I’m a medical journalist, pharmacy grade, and I’ve done a load of first aid courses, so I know what’s going on here. Someone starts yelling for someone to stick something in his mouth – and that’s the worst thing you can do if someone is having a seizure. Instead, as perverse as it sounds, the best thing to do is let the seizure go.”

They continued, “So, I yell ‘NO!’ at that, to make it clear, then calmly get someone to signal for the flight attendant, and ask if there’s something soft to use to cushion. Now, this is a bit of a strange situation because the guy having the seizure is already restrained by the seatbelt – it’s scary. So the best thing to do was use this oversized teddy bear someone had (it was Valentine’s Day) to cushion the guy’s head and get that in place. So there’s me, the stewardess, and a nurse, unbuckled, coming in on a priority emergency landing at Dulles, the plane is at a crazy landing angle, and I’m straddling the aisle trying to stop this guy [from] drill[ing] his head through the wall with a giant teddy bear. As soon as the nurse arrived I stopped, because her expertise trumped my very basic skills. The guy was OK – bewildered and covered in blood, but the EMTs got him off.”

Listen, Lady…

worst-airline-stories-008
Man Wong/Unsplash
Man Wong/Unsplash

The woman sitting behind Reddit user Velkyn01 couldn’t keep her opinions to herself. If you ask us, Velkyn01 was overly polite with his response! They recall: “Had a lady sitting behind and across the aisle from me and my girlfriend on a ten-hour flight. We’d spent the whole weekend together already and were flying to the States for leave. Both of us were enjoying our time being alone but together. I’m reading a book on my phone, she’s listening to music.”

But then… “This lady leans forward and taps my shoulder. Asks me to open her soda for her. I oblige. A minute later. Tap tap. I politely turn around, she starts with, ‘I think something is lost.’ Then just goes into this long-winded spiel about how in her day she’d have been so excited to be with her boyfriend. Cuddling, kissing, talking. I point out that we’ve been together every second of the last 48 hours, we’re just fine. She disagrees wholeheartedly. I disengage, turn back, get a page or two into my book. Tap tap. I turn around again, she starts bending my ear again about ‘today’s youth’ and how we’re just too busy to talk to each other. Segues into the life stories of her children. Every time I turn away, I get that tap tap again. This goes on for almost an hour.”

No One Wants To Sign Up For A Credit Card Right Now

worst-airline-stories-0081

One Reddit user (and apparently many others onboard) hit their limit with the flight attendants’ announcements. They explain, “After a week-long booze bender in the Caribbean, I was flying back to the states on an early morning flight and rocking the worst hangover I’ve had in my life. I couldn’t even drink water without throwing it up. ALL I wanted to do on my flight home was sleep.”

Unfortunately, it got worse: “The flight attendants got on the intercom literally every 20 minutes or so and woke me up trying to sign us up for credit cards and sell duty-free liquor and perfumes during the flight. I called a flight attendant over and said ‘Look, I’m really hungover here and just trying to sleep. You’ve already announced the credit card and the duty-free stuff several times. Can you please not do that again?’ Well, they kept doing it, and after another two or three times, I yelled: ‘JUST SHUT UP ALREADY!’ Apparently, I wasn’t the only one with a hangover because several more people on the plane chimed in saying ‘YEAH, SHUT UP’ and ‘WE’RE TRYING TO SLEEP’ and ‘NOBODY WANTS THE CREDIT CARD!'”

It’s No Wonder They Went Out Of Business

spaim-airport-problems
Miguel Angel Sanz/Unsplash
Miguel Angel Sanz/Unsplash

It’s not an easy business, but some airlines just really don’t have it together. Reddit user SkippingMango7 shares: “Sitting in a hot and fully boarded plane somewhere in sunny Spain the stewardesses are pacing up and down the aisle counting and talking to each other. After a few minutes they announce they are one passenger short and as a result there is one checked bag too much. The solution is to take all the checked baggage out of the plane, lay it on the runway and have everyone find their bag. The engines are off, so no AC, in a jam-packed plane in sunny Spain.”

Sounds terrible, right? It gets worse. “The guys unloading the plane are so slow it is hard to fathom and people are getting edgy. Two hours later, plane is still not empty but almost. One of the stewardesses walks through the cabin double-checking some numbers. With a slightly worried face she talks to a colleague. They counted wrong. Load the plane again. Two more hours in hot no AC jam-packed plane. Company went out of business shortly after.”

He Brought His Own Lunch, And It’s Not What You’d Expect

airline-lunch
Unsplash
Unsplash

Reddit user Adrienne27 might have one of the uniquely worst airline stories with this one. She explains, “Took a flight back to JFK from Costa Rica which had done a prior pick up in Ecuador. Got seated next to a really heavy guy who had been on the flight since the beginning.

So far, it sounds okay, right? But wait… “When mealtime came he refused the airline food and instead pulled out an aluminum foil package which contained a roasted guinea pig. I nearly lost my airline lunch when he pulled off the tiny drumsticks and chewed on them.”

They Booked A Flight To The Wrong State

airline-booking-error
Clint Patterson/Unsplash
Clint Patterson/Unsplash

Reddit user Bobosmite could only blame themselves for this mix-up! Hopefully, they got a good laugh after it was over. “I lived in England for 4 years before moving back to the States. I had arranged for a friend to pick me up at the airport in Charleston, WV. My friend didn’t show up a the airport and after about an hour, I decided to rent a car and drive home. Got the car, got going, and quickly got lost. After four years, I had forgotten how to get from here to there. I stopped at a gas station and asked for directions to Oak Hill. They had never heard of it. Beckley? Nope. No joke I asked, ‘What road takes me East?’ and she said, ‘If you go East, you’ll go into the ocean.’ And she pulled out a map of Charleston SOUTH CAROLINA. I freaked out.”

They continued, “Looking back, there were clues and deceptions. The ground was a little flatter than I remembered and it looked like the airport had undergone a remodeling. But, all the signs said “Charleston Airport” and there were military planes at the airport. (WV has a reserve base, SC has an active duty base). After a big panic, returning the rental car, and getting back my military ID that I happened to leave at the counter the first time I was there, I spent the night in a motel. I paid $300 for a ticket to West Virginia and arranged for my friend to meet me at the airport the next day.”

They Were Basically Kevin McCallister

alone-airport
Frenando Silva/Unsplash
Frenando Silva/Unsplash

Reddit user Beancounter2885 has a wild story that we imagine was basically the airport version of Home Alone. They explain: “I was 12 and flying on my own from Ft. Lauderdale to Philadelphia with a layover in Charlotte. I was waiting at the gate, our plane pulled up, but they never started the boarding process. The check-in people seemed confused and disoriented, and the plane was eventually taken away.”

They continued, “Turns out the FAA decided to put a stop to ValuJet after a major plane crash where they were negligent. I just happened to be on a layover when that happened. My mom was freaking out and sent me money via Western Union. I was stuck in the airport for two days before another airline decided to honor my tickets.”

They Were Going To Take Off… Without A Door

worst-airline-stories-00882
Markus Winkler/Unsplash
Markus Winkler/Unsplash

Reddit user jester02k was happy to deboard the plane they were originally supposed to fly on. They recall, “Was traveling to Dallas from Boston had a layover in Atlanta. while waiting at the terminal we hear a weird bang. The captain came over the PA telling us there’s a problem with the cargo door it will be a short delay. It took about an hour and we finally pushed back from the terminal and taxied out to take off when we suddenly turned back to the terminal. The captain came back on the intercom and explained that the repairs required an FAA inspection and we will be in the air momentarily.”

They continue, “Well, we taxi up and you could hear the door open and close about three times then there was a louder bang. The captain was right on the PA this time and said that the FAA didn’t like the repairs and we would have to change planes. While walking off the gangway people started to notice the cargo door was on the ground. It had fallen off the plane. Rumor with the gate people was that while [we were] taxi[ing] out to the runway the tower noticed the problem with the door and that the door was repaired not by the mechanics but the baggage handlers. We were all given 300 dollar vouchers not that I would ever fly them again.”

Dressed For Winter Sitting On A Tarmac In Barbados

worst-airline-stories-0011
Ahmed Syed/Unsplash
Ahmed Syed/Unsplash

Deciding what to wear while traveling between different climates is tough. Reddit user J_Keefe immediately had regrets. “In the 90s my family took a winter vacation from NJ to Barbados. The vacation was lovely, and when we went home we had to dress for February in NJ, which means wearing pants on the airplane even though it was really hot in Barbados (Barbados is only 10 degrees north of the equator). So I’m wearing jeans, packed into coach in the middle seat of a 3-seat group, on the tarmac with the door closed, and the captain comes on the PA and announces that they have a warning light for low generator fluid. He warns the cabin that the SOP is to replace the low fluid as well as check all of the generators. This includes the APU (auxiliary power unit), which powers the cabin air conditioning.”

He continued, “Everyone was instructed to close the window shades and move as little as possible. We then sat on the tarmac for two and a half hours in the blistering sun under a cloudless sky, with zero airflow in the cabin. To make the situation worse, some idiot (an adult that should have known better) was talking to whoever would listen and saying ‘Good thing we didn’t take off. When a generator runs out of fluid, it’s like when a car runs out of gas – it explodes!’ I was in middle school at the time and was smart enough (and knew enough about aviation) to know the guy was full of it. It’s not good to potentially incite panic in an aircraft experiencing mechanical difficulty.”

A 10-Year-Old And An 8-Year-Old Alone In Chicago

mcdonalds-layover
Yusuf Evli/Unsplash
Yusuf Evli/Unsplash

It’s tough enough when you’re an adult and your flight is canceled, but it’s even worse when you’re a kid traveling with your younger sister! Reddit user Ohitsriahh recalls, “I was 10, flying to my grandparents’ house with my 8-year-old sister for the first time without our parents. My parents had escorts and everything set up, and things were going good. They moved us to first-class and fed us amazing food. Then the Northeast Blackout of 2003 happened, and we were unable to finish our flight from Seattle to Detroit. So we landed in Chicago.”

They continued, “We were scared and both freaked out (my first experience with anxiety) without our parents. We ended up having to spend the night there in one of the lobby rooms with all of the other parentless kids who had to make emergency landings. They gave us free McDonald’s for dinner, and a few of the stewardesses went and bought a few Nintendo game consoles from the Walmart for us all to take turns playing. It was scary without our parents, but everything turned out okay.”

It Could Have Been Worse

airport-photo-34
Jue Huang/Unsplash
Jue Huang/Unsplash

Reddit user ThatGuyFromOhio had a scary airline incident but luckily walked away unscathed. “Our flight was approaching the airport. When the plane was only a few hundred feet above the ground, the engines suddenly raced and we headed back up. A moment later, one of the crew opened the cockpit door, walked down the aisle with a flashlight in one hand, a screwdriver in the other hand and a worried look on his face. He disappeared into a trap door in the aisle floor and remained below for a long while. He emerged from the trap door, and walked back up to the cockpit, still looking worried. The captain came on the loudspeaker and said that there is a problem, but they think it is a false warning light. We are going to attempt a landing.”

He continued, “At this point, the fellow in the seat next to me vomited. We started down toward the runway and approached the airport. As we touched down, dozens of fire trucks were racing down the runway along with us. The plane came to a halt and the passengers burst out into joyous applause as the fire trucks raced up beside us. All was well. Except for the smell of vomit.”

This Poor Soul Had No Personal Space

kid-traveling
Zach Vessels/Unsplash
Zach Vessels/Unsplash

Reddit user grindermonk knows the challenges of flying alone with an infant all too well. They explain: “I was flying with my 18-month-old son as a lap child. The flight was full and were assigned a middle seat in the last row of our 737. You know the last row, it’s the one with the bulkhead behind it that prevents any hope of reclining your seat. Were among the first to board. Eventually, our row companions join us. Sitting on either side of us are 300+ pound mountains. Oh well, it’ll be a cramped 3 hours. The flight takes off. We get to cruising altitude and get our drink service. And now the guy in front of us leans his seat back to take a nap. Apparently, his seat has no stop on the recline mechanism. I now have a bald head in my lap as well as my son, and I’m wedged in between two people who are overflowing their seats. Then, to top it off, my son knocks our neighbor’s tray table, spilling most of a can of coke in my lap”

They continued, “Kids crying, passengers are shouting, somehow the bald head is still snoring in in lap. I get the evil eye from the flight attendant for causing a disturbance. As if it was my inability to control my kid that caused this mess. She ignores my pleas for something to wipe up the spill, and I spend the rest of the flight fuming in my seat. Ugh. Usually, folks are somewhat understanding of a parent traveling alone with a small child, but in this case, I got no help.”

They’ll Have PTSD From Christina Aguilera

An airline passenger sleeps on terminal seats
Robert Alexander/Getty Images
Robert Alexander/Getty Images

There are one thousand ways to have a bad time at the airport and on a flight and Reddit user gongacn07’s is rather unique. It’s one thing to have to sleep on the airport floor overnight, it’s another situation entirely when this happens:

“Was stuck in Philadelphia Airport overnight shortly before Christmas during a snowstorm. For what seemed like the entire night, Christina Aguilera’s Christmas album was played on repeat full-blast throughout the terminal. Hell is real.”

They Didn’t Realize Until Later How Suspicious They Looked

GettyImages-634339100
FG/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images
FG/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images

Reddit user undeadgorgeous recalls a hilarious time she and a friend were flying and didn’t realize how suspicious they looked until it was too late. She explains: “A friend and I were traveling from California to Utah with one-way tickets. We decided on a whim to fly there for a show and weren’t sure when we wanted to head home. We had a single large duffel bag between us as well as a large prop relating to the show we were seeing. It was a motorcycle helmet with the front windshield part removed and a microphone mounted on the side, with the mic part coming around in front of the mouth part. There were red and blue wires connecting the mic to the inside of the helmet. Neither one of us thought it was that weird so my friend took it as her carry on item.”

She continues, “So. We have two girls with one-way tickets, a large black duffel bag, and a helmet with a mysterious object mounted to the side. This spelled out terrorism apparently because we were detained and questioned before we even made it to the gate. They had to put us on the next flight four hours later. All because neither one of us thought about the fact that maybe our microphone-helmet hybrid looked like a bomb.”

Team Hangover Doesn’t Have It Together

airport-photo-321
Markus Winkler/Unsplash
Markus Winkler/Unsplash

Reddit user programmed_death learned the hard way not to drink too much the night before a flight. He recalls, “Was on a recruiting trip in late September. The night before, we went to a huge party and got extremely wasted. Was drinking from 10 pm to around 3 am–and my flight was at 6 am. I made it to the airport fine, still probably drunk, but I made it. Made the first 2-hour leg of the flight fine. During the one hour layover is when the hangover hit me. My fellow teammates were not doing so well either. We board the next flight and my teammate is lucky enough to get to the bathroom in the cabin to puke, but not me.

It goes downhill from there… “We take off and it feels like the entire plane is spinning in circles. I had the vents on to the fullest which was probably what kept me from puking during the flight, but when we landed, they must have turned the A/C off because the vents were no longer blowing cool air. I knew at that point I wasn’t going to make it, pulled out the bag and blew chunks as we were taxiing. Easily the worst experience of my life so far.”

The Airplane Door Wasn’t Shut

worst-airline-stories-06882
Samuel Sianipar/Unsplash
Samuel Sianipar/Unsplash

Some of these stories sound stressful and frustrating, but this one is downright scary. The ignorance of the flight crew is absolutely stunning. Reddit user chevyfried recalls, “Flying with my family from Miami to Barcelona aboard luxurious Iberia Airlines. We board, all going as planned, strap in and taxi out. Start ascending and everyone is kinda wondering why the pressure is starting hurt everyone’s ears. We keep going, captain tells us all is fine and keeps ascending. Starting to really hurt now and my cousin who just had facial reconstructive surgery after a near-death car accident starts yelling in pain. Then the masks drop. Between trying to calm her down, looking for a single member of the airline and the captain still reassuring us we don’t need to Don our masks, everyone is starting to freak out.”

They continued, “Finally, after a good 15 minutes we level off and the captain comes back on telling us we will be turning around back to Miami. Oh but wait, we are on a 747 and with a full tank of gas, booked flight and full cargo, a 747 can’t land on a standard runway. So we spent the next hour dumping our fuel over the pristine Atlantic ocean. Finally land, and find out the door was broken and never closed properly. They went out of business very shortly after.”

He’s Never Going To Israel Again

GettyImages-1206356883
JACK GUEZ/AFP via Getty Images
JACK GUEZ/AFP via Getty Images

No one wants to be pulled into a room for an extra security check. Nothing good happens in those rooms. Reddit user scnative843 knows this all too well. “I was flying from Tel Aviv to JFK, and while I was going through security in Tel Aviv, I got pulled by security. They took me to a side room, interviewed me for a little while about why I was in Israel and where I went, and then made me go into what was basically a 4×4 box with a curtain blocking one side. They made me strip down to my boxers, and toss my clothes out for them to search. After they did this, I got dressed, and they proceeded to take my books, my iPod, and my headphones away, and make me check them. This left me with nothing to read and nothing to watch or listen to for the 12-hour flight.”

He continued, “The icing on the cake was that my seat was the aisle seat right next to the bathroom, so not only did I get to smell the bathroom for the whole flight, but every single person who went to the bathroom for 12 hours bumped into my seat to and from the bathroom. Every. Single. Person.”

Shake Your Groove Thing (Over And Over)

disco
ktphotography/Pixabay
ktphotography/Pixabay

Redditor milkomeda acknowledges that their story is not nearly as dramatic as some others, but it’s still a good one. “[B]ack in ’04 I got stuck at the Atlanta airport for 10 hours, after we missed our flight due to complications in our connecting flight. What was horrible, was they had this cycle of announcements constantly playing throughout the airport, and the cycle was relatively short, like 5 min or so. Normally I would just tune them out, but in the middle of the announcements they would play a short, 10 second clip of the song ‘shake your groove thing’ (don’t remember the context).

“So I must have hear that 10 second clip like, I dunno, 100+ times? It. Was. TORTURE. For around a week afterwords I would still hear ‘shake your groove thing, shake your groove thing..’ in my dreams, and in my head at random intervals throughout the day.”

This Is What Happened Before Cell Phones

worst-airline-stories-04882
Emily Rusch/Unsplash
Emily Rusch/Unsplash

Do you ever stop and think about what life was like before cell phones? It seems like ages ago. Before cell phones, you couldn’t correct a communication error easily. And then things like this happen, as Reddit user VerbableNouns explains: “When I was 10 I flew solo from ROC to MCO where my grandparents were supposed to pick me up at 2000h. They did not show. After wandering the airport for an hour or so looking for them, I finally spoke with somebody and was herded into a room for several hours by myself afraid that I’d never get to see Mickey Mouse.”

They continued, “This was 1996, so no cell phones, all I had was a phone number to a landline where nobody was answering. Turns out they went to the wrong airport.”

Spoiler Alert: He Didn’t Get Her Number

worst-airline-stories-00114

Reddit user iguanajuan will never forget this flight. He explains: “I was about 12 on my flight from Las Vegas to the East Coast with my family. I sat in the middle seat between my dad and a young girl about my age. I hadn’t spoken much at first but after my dad fell asleep the girl and I struck up a conversation and we were getting a long really well. (As a pubescent young boy I had a huge crush on her and was going to ask for her number). I felt a little woozy shortly before landing but we had already been flying for several hours so I wasn’t too worried. When we started to descend, about 10 minutes away from the tarmac, I projectile vomited unexpectedly onto the lap of the girl next to me mid-sentence and then continued to throw up all over her seat.”

He continued, “So we touch down and I’ve emptied my entire dinner onto both her and her belongings (We had A&W so picture big… burger, fries, and a huge root beer) and at this point, she’s climbed into her seat to avoid some of the vomit. I look up at her to see the most disgusted/frightened face I’ve seen to date. I think the conversation was tabled at this point. I look down into my hand and realize I had been holding an air sickness bag in my hand the entire flight and hadn’t thought to use it. Then after we got through baggage claim I went to change and forgot my shoes in the airport bathroom. The end.”

Bathroom Anxiety

Lit signal of bathrooms for men and women on a plane .
Roberto Machado Noa/LightRocket via Getty Images
Roberto Machado Noa/LightRocket via Getty Images

Using the airplane restroom can be kind of intimidating. Reddit user AstronomicalArtist18 learned the lesson the hard way. “Going to [H]awaii in 4th grade for my aunts wedding, id never been on a plane before and got stuck in the bathroom. The flight attendant was banging on the door trying to get me to come out because the plane was landing. Little me freaked out until I figured out how to open the door.

“Hit some BAD turbulence coming in to my town in a tiny plane. Plane free fell for a few seconds, guy behind me is a [jerk] and says, ‘well, I don’t think we’re going to make it home!’ I already need anti-anxieties to fly, this made me swear off planes.”

The Airline Lost Their Wedding Clothes!

luggage
Dane Deaner/Unsplash
Dane Deaner/Unsplash

Some of travelers’ worst airline stories involve lost luggage, and Redditor zappy487 knows this all too well. They were on their way to their wedding when a terrible mishap took place. After missing a connecting flight, they asked an airline employee about their luggage. “I look this woman in the eyes and say ‘I am flying home for my wedding, will my luggage make it, my parents do not live near the airport.’ ‘Yes,’ [she said] in the sassiest tone. I told her it was fine, I’d rather take the next flight to be sure, but they were going to charge me like $400 more. I rudely told her to we would comply and got on the plane.

“[We] did not make it to New York… they lost her wedding dress and my dress blues. All hell broke loose with my wife and mom. There was no kindness or remorse… given to customer service. They were so angry my sister and I excused ourselves.”

When The Cleaning Crew Misses A Very Important Item…

cleaning up a sick bag
Robert Alexander/Getty Images
Robert Alexander/Getty Images

Oh wow, this one might take the cake. It’s easy to assume that the cleaning crew will do a thorough job between flights but this is not always the case. Just ask rya_nc.

“Was flying to Hawaii with my girlfriend at the time on United. The cleaning crew missed a used sick bag that had been shoved between the seat and the side of the plane. She shifted and it burst onto her.” That must have been a miserable flight.

I Will Never Ever.

ill man on plane
Avi Richards/Unsplash
Avi Richards/Unsplash

The Redditor who shared this story has since deleted their account, perhaps out of shame. “Had a flight the next day so I thought I should take it easy the night before. Mates called me to go out, insisted, I vaguely resisted, then my alcoholic alter ego said [no way]. Fast forward, bar crawling, 3 different clubs, drinking barrels of beer, dancing….”

They continued partying. “Got home at 6 AM, slept precisely 37 minutes, alarm rang (amazing I had set it up!), didn’t even have time to get a shower. Jumped on the bus to the airport, really nauseous. Get on board the plane, find my seat (a middle seat) right between two huge guys, one that smelled horribly like the sweat, the other one with breath to kill a mammoth. 3 hour flight. Did not go well at all. This is one of those ‘I will never ever…’ that I actually stick to ever since.”

It Went Everywhere!

lavatory door
Sándor Tarnóczi/YouTube
Sándor Tarnóczi/YouTube

Rafaeltheraven shared this gem of a bathroom story to Reddit. “[O]nce on a very long flight home my plane got into some heavy turbulence. Nothing really special or noteworthy, but I really had to [use the bathroom], so when there was a silent period and the seatbelt light went off I decided to go to the toilet. Well, just when I was about to release the stream, heavy turbulence struck again and the plane sort of bounced up and down, [liquid] going everywhere.

“Ever since then, I try to not go to the toilet on planes and if I do, make it a short one, because I still get freaked out.”

Don’t Let People Get Away With Being Rude!

passengers-519011_1280
steladi/Pixabay
steladi/Pixabay

Here’s a traveler who made the mistake of being polite to a rude fellow passenger. They paid the price for it! As F4ST_M4ST3R explains, “All of my family was in the row ahead of me, and i had the [aisle] seat behind them. not too bad, especially since im diabetic, so i need to get up and check in with my mom, get juice if needed, etc. But then this one guy comes up to me and rudely says ‘I need to get in my seat’ so i get up to let him in, and he says, in that same rude…tone ‘No, thats my seat’ pointing to my seat.

“Being the socially shy person I am, I let him have it. big mistake. that [jerk] slept for the entire trip, and as ive said before, i need to get up often. so every time i woke him up to leave he gave me a [rude] look. and it was his fault for [desperately] ‘needing’ that aisle seat. And the best part? it turns out that the aisle seat really was mine.”