CHRISTMAS is nigh and tens of thousands of Australians are about to head for airports around the country and many of them, sadly, will prove to be exasperatingly rude. Here are some tips on how not to be one of those who drive fellow travellers to the point of rage and temporary insanity.
Check-in: Check out your allowable baggage allowance before you pack - remembering you will be charged for being overweight. There's nothing worse than being behind someone rummaging through an open suitcase on the airport floor cramming boots and jumpers into their carry-on pack. And there's no use arguing when asked to pay for the extra weight.
Departure gate: On many flights you board according to where you are sitting on the plane. So, if you are in row five and they're calling passengers for rows 25 to 30, don't force them to push past you. You won't be left behind.
Carry-on luggage: If there's no room to store your carry-on in the overhead bin immediately above your seat, don't throw a tantrum. Just put it in the bin in front or behind where you are sitting.
Reclining your seat: It actually makes little difference on short flights. But it certainly does to the person behind you, especially if he or she is trying to have a snack, a sip of wine or watching the TV screen on the back of your seat.
Safety instructions: It's just as boring for air crew to have to give their safety demonstrations as it is for you to have to listen. And even if you aren't interested in the possibility of it saving your life, try to show respectful interest.
Little darlings: Parents travelling with children often appear oblivious to their little darlings kicking the back of the seat in front, poking faces over the top of their seat at passengers behind, yelling, or making a general nuisance of themselves.
Smelly armpits: Make sure you use a deodorant, and please, please, please no singlets exposing hairy armpits.
Carry-on food: If you are on a low-cost carrier that allows you to bring food onboard be considerate in what you choose. Many fast foods, especially those with lots of onions, can stink in confined spaces.
Respecting people's space: The seats are small enough without you hogging the armrests or sticking your elbows into those next to you.
Getting off: Don't try to elbow your way past those in the seats in front of you. Give them time to get their stuff together.