As air vacationers, we’ve all been there. Possibly you’re thirsty, hungry, have trash to throw away, or need someone to intervene with a disruptive child seated close to you. The flight attendant name button is gleaming overhead, promising to ship over a pleasant crew member to unravel your issues. However is it impolite to web page a flight attendant for one among these causes?

The reply varies by scenario. Most flight attendants admit that there’s a sure unstated etiquette to utilizing the decision button correctly that takes into consideration the section of the flight, the place a passenger is seated, and what the request could also be.

Clearly security all the time comes first regarding the name button: In case you see one thing, say one thing, and should you consider one thing is uncommon, somebody is struggling a medical emergency, or a scenario seems to be unsafe and doubtlessly might trigger an emergency, hit the button and hit it shortly with out a second thought. 

Exterior of questions of safety, nevertheless, utilizing the characteristic has some nuance. We requested flight attendants to stroll us via a number of eventualities when it’s okay for passengers to ring the decision button—and when it could be frowned upon by most crew members. 

Palms off the button throughout taxi, takeoff, and touchdown

In case you’re considering ringing the decision button because the plane is accelerating down the runway for takeoff to ask the flight attendant for a soda, count on some withering side-eye stares and scolding from the cabin crew. “It’s by no means okay to ring the decision button throughout taxi, take-off, or touchdown until it’s an emergency,” says Boston-based flight attendant Kelly Casteel. “These are the phases of the journey that carry the best probability by which one thing might go flawed, so the flight attendants are instructed to organize the cabin, take their seats, and evaluation their emergency procedures. That’s fairly commonplace at each airline.” 

Some issues can wait

Many flight crew members are glad to answer a web page from a name button as soon as the airplane is at cruising altitude—with one main caveat. “I personally inform passengers it’s okay to ring the decision button if they need one other drink or snack. I’m not a kind of flight attendants that claims a passenger can solely ring the decision button in the event that they’re dying or bleeding,” says Orlando-based flight attendant Aimee LaMay. “I’d a lot reasonably they name me, and I can present a private service reasonably than bringing out the beverage carts once more and blocking the aisle and path to the lavatory.” 

However flight attendants’ persistence wears skinny in the case of trash clean-up, in response to LaMay. “No airline has a trash container on the beverage cart, so please don’t attempt to hand us your trash whereas we’re serving drinks and meals,” she says. “And don’t ring your name button to have us decide up trash.” 

Holding onto trash is frequent etiquette rule for many crew members. “I don’t thoughts in the event that they push the decision button in the event that they actually need one thing, but it surely’s by no means okay to push it to have us decide up your trash,” says Alexa Billig, a flight attendant based mostly in Los Angeles. Billig says her airline, like most, requires flight attendants to routinely go via the cabin to gather garbage. At such instances the crew is ready with trash luggage and protecting gloves, however they don’t all the time reply to the decision button ready to deal with a few of the unsanitary gadgets handed their means. “Soiled diapers, toe nails, chewed sunflower seeds, meals waste—the checklist goes on,” Billig says. “You wouldn’t contact half of the issues handed our means with out gloves, so it’s solely courteous to attend till we’ve bought ours on earlier than anticipating us to take something away.”

It relies upon the place you are seated

For some cabin crew, your proper to name button entry will depend on the place you’re seated. “If the in-flight service is over, and the passenger is seated at the window or within the heart seat, they will ring the decision button anytime,” says New York flight attendant Linda Newman. “In case you’re within the aisle seat, you’re welcome to return to the again and ask [for what you need].”

However it’s a special story when cabin crew are serving meals and making rounds with the beverage cart: Paging flight attendants for one thing frivolous throughout these instances is virtually verboten, in response to Newman. “I’m all the time glad to get passengers what they need, it’s what I’m there for, but when we’re clearly within the aisle working, please be respectful of the truth that there’s often three flight attendants for each 150 passengers, and it’s going take a while to get via the cabin,” says Newman. 

“My largest pet peeve”

Ringing the decision button to flag down a crew member is all the time a greater thought than bodily touching a flight attendant to get their consideration. “Something is best than being poked within the facet, or behind, whereas strolling down the aisle. It’s my largest pet peeve,” Katherine Gwynn, an Atlanta-based crew member, explains. “The decision button is there for a motive. Passengers can use it anytime they’ve a necessity—however please don’t contact the flight attendants.”

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