Monday, September 7, 2009

From the Sublime . . .(Concorde) . . . to the ridiculous . . . (Seat Back Pockets!)

Oh yes. Just when you thought your comfort and convenience had been compromised to the max . . . .
Now, passengers are being admonished "not to put any personal belongings in the seat back pockets."
Your bottle of water? No!
Your book or newspaper while you (such as it is) eat? No!
Your cough drops? No!'
Your eyeglasses? No!
Your airline ticket? No!
Your iPod? No!
Admittedly, not all airlines are following this newest mantra. It seems to have come from the FAA itself, according to those airlines enforcing it. The FAA admits that the agency had been issuing "guidance" to carriers to that effect, according to Joe Sharkey at the New York Times. Regional agents who work directly with airlines were told that "nothing should be in the seat-back pockets except in-flight magazines and the safety information card put there by the carriers themselves."
Pardon my indelicacy here, but what about airsickness bags???
Some of the big guys, the "legacy carriers" like United and Delta, the biggest airline in the world, are stating publicly that passengers have a right to put personal items in the seat back pockets.
Some have speculated that the airlines following the "seat back pocket guidelines" may see a benefit to quicker aircraft turnarounds. Empty seat back pockets means less work for cleaning crews.
Just a thought - I imagine that, on occasion, the cleaning crews found a "bonus" of sorts in items left behind by passengers in seat back pockets. Sorry folks. It would appear that that treasure hunt is over.


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