Economy class seats are safer
The majority of studies suggest that, in the event of a crash, those sat at the front of an aircraft – traditionally where premium-class seating is found – are more likely to die. You will also raise your chances of survival if you are within a few rows of an emergency exit.
Cabin air may be making you sick
The issue of cabin air being contaminated by engine fumes is nothing new. Dozens of pilots have spoken out about the effects of inhaling toxic fumes from engines – which some medical specialists refer to as “aerotoxic syndrome” – and accused the airline industry of doing little to tackle it. Some claim they have been left incapacitated at the controls of an aircraft because of it. And in 2010 a stewardess won damages from her employer after a contaminated cabin air incident caused was ruled to havecaused her long-term respiratory problems.
The decision to abandon the “bleed air” system on the Boeing 787 Dreamliner, eliminating the risk of contamination, was a welcome change. But the system remains in place on other new models.
Airport staff drink your confiscated alcohol
That was what Jason Harrington, a Transportation Security Administration (TSA) officer from 2007-2013, claimed earlier this year in a candid confession for the website Politico. (A Gatwick spokesman denies that any such activity takes place on British shores, it should be noted).
Harrington also claimed that staff, until 2010, profiled passengers based on their nationality, and, until technological advances made the images less revealing, technology would laugh and gawk at pictures of naked passengers on full body scanners.
You can buy lost luggage
Unclaimed items left at airport or on aeroplanes are, by law, stored for 90 days,before being donated to or auctioned for charity. If you’re interested in getting hold of some cut-price kit, head to one of the following auction houses:
Greasbys, a Tooting auction house, sells on luggage from various London airports every other Tuesday, but don’t expect to unearth any hidden gems. “It’s dirty clothing and bags, mainly,” said one employee.
Wellers, which has branches in Chertsey and Guildford, sells on “bags, clothes, and small electronics” from London airports every Tuesday.
The snappily-named Bristol Commercial Valuers & Auctioneers looks after lost property left at airports in the South West, while Hertfordshire Auctions flogs Luton’s unclaimed bits and bobs.
Your lifejacket might not be there
George Hobica, airline expert and the founder of Airfarewatchdog.com, recently once the Huffington Post: “People take those life jackets, located under or between your seat, as souvenirs. It’s a vile and punishable offense, and while airlines do check each seat at the start of every day, a plane could make several trips in a day, during any one of which a passenger could steal a life vest. So, I learned, it’s a good idea to check if the life jacket is indeed there.”