I wouldn't necessarily call all seat kickers annoying. With airline seats so close together today, it's almost impossible to avoid kicking the seat in front of you. However, #1, using your foot as a weapon, to get revenge on someone who is only exercising their airline-given-right to recline - that is annoying, and should be a reason for ejection, regardless of the altitude.
As for seat reclining (#7), airline seats recline. I see that as an implied right to recline. Most people today know if there is room for their knees when the person in front exercises his right to recline and know they have the option to purchase a seat with more leg room. If they don't spend money for their needed room, they shouldn't expect the person in front of them to suffer. (It's no different than the obese traveler who can't fit in the standard seat and lifts the armrest so they spill over onto the seat someone else paid for.) On short flights, I don't usually recline (I'm sitting upright where I can work on the Sudoko puzzle from the airline magazine), but on trans-Atlantic flights, reclining is the only way I can get some sleep.
I'm usually pretty excited about my trip when I fly, so I have to watch myself so I'm not guilty of being a "Chatty Cathy" Also, I always take my shoes off during transatlantic flights, so the morning before I leave, I thoroughly wash and powder my feet, make sure my socks are fresh and clean, and put odor eaters in my shoes. I don't want to be "that guy".
The seat-kicking drives me crazy. I can't count the number of times I've had kids behind me doing it. With adults, it's the guy who keeps crossing his leg and knocking the back of my seat, or constantly folding/unfolding the tray.
The survey said about 1/3 of passengers recline seats - in my experience, the person in front of me always reclines as soon as possible into the flight. I have to ask the attendant to have the seat straightened during meals. It's especially annoying for me because I am usually most comfortable in the upright position.
Those are the two things I haven't found a way to overcome. Noise-cancelling earbuds or headphones work for both the chatterers and the babies.
Most experienced flyers take their shoes off as part of getting settled in. The only bad experience I had was a French 5-year-old with the smelliest feet ever on a 5 hour flight.
I tend to take my boots off as well...if only because the rush to get on the plane, find an overhead and get settled and out of the other passengers way leaves me overheated and feeling headachy - taking off my shoes cools my (socked) feet off, instantly making me feel better (I hate hot feet!). That being said, I always shower before, socks are clean, hubby is usually beside me (we've been apart on some flights), I generally put them back on after 30 min or so, and would def NOT go in sock feet to the bathroom. Last flight home I said the heck with it and wore my Teva sandals so I didn't have to worry about hot feet. And you would NEVER catch me sticking my feet on someone's armrest, the wall, or my tray...I haven't been that flexible for 10 years now...
Any flight over 3 hours I always take my shoes off but have never had foot odor so no problem for anyone. Feet and legs usually swell a little on long flights. Recline does not bother me but the kicking does. I am a believer that there should be a passenger weight and size question when purchasing a ticket. On a recent 3 hr flight, I had someone next to me that was very large and had lots of layers of clothing on and I think he was wearing some type of medical bag. Odor was terrible and almost sickening. I rarely ever get sick to my stomach but that was a close call. He was in his seat and part of mine. Had to keep my face close to the window to even breathe. Worst flight ever.
I try to be as unobtrusive as possible--I usually get a window seat so I can retreat into my own little corner, keep my clothes and shoes on, travel with a clean body & clothes & no perfume, keep my seat upright, stow my carry-on under the seat having already removed my little bag with book, knitting and snack inside and engage in only the smallest pleasantries with fellow seat mates. I don't drink as much liquid as usual and try to keep requests to get out for the bathroom to a minimum--maybe twice on a 10 hour flight, best case scenario is if seat mates get up to go, so do I.
Since we are of a certain age and my husband makes frequent trips to the bathroom during a transatlantic flight, if we don't manage to get an aisle seat for him, I will ask the person who does sit there if he can please have it. I imply strongly that if he doesn't give up the seat, he will regret it since he'll have to let him out every 45 minutes or so. Usually, people get the idea and are quite pleasant about it.
I truly hope we're not among this "annoying type of airline passenger." (By the way, it's very important healthwise to stay hydrated on long flights.)
2014 - The Year of the Bad Airline Passenger
I once sat next to a man with two young sons. The boys drank a whole coke apiece before dinner and after dinner. Needless to say, they needed to run to the toilet quite a few times. Each time they both passed me. After about the fourth trip I quit getting up for them and made them squeeze in front of my knees. The father sort of apologized and I just said, "Coke will do that."
Another time the woman seated behind me grabbed the top of my seat and gave a good tug to get up. I asked her not to do that, and then she got worse.
I confess to being a little chatty. I've improved in the last few years and mostly leave my neighbors alone. One part of chattiness is it can annoy all the people within hearing distance. I've had people chat loudly in the aisle near my seat, on and on.
I try to avoid sitting near the toilets. People hanging out in the aisles waiting their turn detract from my nap time.
Reclining seats are one of those horribly misdirected emotional hot buttons. People spend their time blaming the recliners for reclining, when it's the airline's fault for putting the seats too close together in order to squeeze every ounce of profit they can out of us. I wish they'd switch to horizontal stacked pods/shelves. Then at least we'd be laying down.
Before flying mutated into the most miserable experience on earth (or is that just my memory giving everything in the 80s & 90s that rosy glow of 'back in the day when everything was perfect'?), there was plenty of room for everyone to recline and only the tallest of passengers might have an issue but airlines were happy places where these tall folks could easily get placed into an exit row seat.
I don't begrudge the equally miserable sardine-in-a-tin in front of me for reclining... I curse the airlines and their CEO's and their millions in stock options and bonuses.
A couple trips back going overseas my group of 30 was seated in the rows beginning at the back going forward. I was seated in the back row, aisle seat nearest the bathroom.
I also had a sleeping mask & earplugs which helped me sleep (in between the times the flight steward woke me up).
And the bottom line is that I'll put up with it all to be able to get to all those wonderful destinations. . . and vent here now and again :-)
Chani, here here.
Yes, I try to tell myself (when annoyed on an airplane) - that it is only a fraction of my vacation and not to get too worked up over it - this to, shall pass... :)