Travelers weigh in on common travel dilemmas such as: overhead bin space, unruly children, cell phone use in-flight, distractingly loud music/movies, and being asked to switch seats.

Plymouth, MN (June 20, 2012) – There are situations that many, if not most, airline passengers repeatedly face – particularly since planes are flying at near capacity. Consumers were provided with a variety of such scenarios through Travel Leaders Group’s recent consumer survey and asked how they would handle them, including when fellow passengers don’t turn off their cell phones in-flight – in that instance, 61.4% said they would take some sort of action.  A child kicking one’s airplane seat would prompt 73% of those polled to take action and distractingly loud music or movies would stir 73.9% to action. This survey was conducted by Travel Leaders Group from April 4 to May 16, 2012, and includes responses from 855 consumers throughout the U.S.

“With more and more people flying today, there are bound to be situations in which air travelers aren’t quite sure if, or how, they should take action.  Let’s face it, there are no real etiquette rules for air travel,” stated Travel Leaders Group CEO Barry Liben.  “The ‘What would you do?’ questions we asked were to gauge on how airline passengers handle potentially prickly situations such as an unruly child and how tolerant they are of requests to switch seats or put their carry-on items under the seat in front of them so a large roller bag can go up above.  By better understanding consumer behavior, our travel experts can provide sage advice to their clients to hopefully better defuse many of the situations they may face while traveling.”

Key Statistics and Findings

When asked, “If another airline passenger seated near you won’t turn off his/her cell phone while in flight, what would you do?” the responses were:

Call a flight attendant and   let him/her handle the situation.


Say something directly to   the person.


Sit quietly and say   nothing.


Not sure.



When asked, “If another airline passenger seated near you is using headphones to listen to music or a movie and the sound is so loud that everyone around him/her can also hear, what would you do?” the responses were:

Say something directly to   the person asking them to turn it down.


Call a flight attendant and   let him/her handle the situation.


Sit quietly and say   nothing.


Not sure.



When asked, “If a child was seated behind you on an airplane and constantly kicked your seat, what would you do?” the responses were:

Turn around and say   something directly to the parent or child.


Call a flight attendant and   let him/her handle the situation.


Sit quietly and say   nothing, while hoping the parent will stop their child.


Ignore it, children will be   children.


Turn around and glare at   the parent or child.


Not sure.



When asked, “If you were flying alone and a couple asked you to switch seats so that they could sit together, what would you do?” the responses were:

Gladly move regardless of   what kind of seat it was.


Move only if it was not a   middle seat.


Move only if new seat was   an aisle seat.


Not sure.


Move only if new seat was a   window seat.


Move only if it were closer   to the front of the plane.


Move only if new seat had   extra leg room.


I wouldn’t move for any   reason.



Many elite status frequent flyers get upgraded.  When asked, “If you were traveling with a companion on vacation and you received an upgrade to first class, would you…” the responses were:

Depends on who I’m   traveling with.


I would pass up the opportunity   so we could continue to sit together.


I’m not sure what I would   do.


Give it to my traveling   companion – they deserve a little extra something.


Depends on the length of   the flight.


I would say “see you after   the flight” and head to the front of the plane.



When asked, “If you placed a small bag in the overhead bin and were asked to place it under the seat in front of you so someone else could put a very large roller bag above, would you …” the responses were:

Do so without a second   thought. 54.6%
Do so, but grudgingly. I   believe the other passenger should’ve checked their bag. 22.1%
Politely decline offering   one or several reasons why your bag should stay where it is. 9.9%
Politely decline offering   no explanation. 6.9%
Not sure. 6.5%


When asked, “While passing through a TSA security checkpoint, if a traveler in front of you is taking too long removing shoes, laptop, etc. would you…” the responses were:

Patiently wait. 51.3%
Wait, but be frustrated   that they don’t have their act together. 37.8%
Jump in front of them. 9.0%
Not sure. 1.8%
Tell them to move faster. 0.1%


This is the fourth consecutive year this consumer travel survey has been conducted. American consumers were engaged predominantly through social media channels such as Facebook and Twitter, as well as through direct contact with travel clients for the following Travel Leaders Group companies: Nexion, Results! Travel, Travel Leaders, Tzell Travel Group and Travel Leaders Group also released its findings on American travelers’ “tipping point” on the cost of airfare ( and increased satisfaction with airport security (

Travel Leaders Group is one of North America’s largest travel companies – encompassing nearly one-third of all travel agents – and generates gross travel sales of nearly $17 billion. Travel Leaders Group is a leader in both the retail travel agency space and corporate travel, and it consistently ranks as one of the top travel companies nationwide. Most recently, Travel Leaders Group was again named among the Top 10 on the Travel Weekly Power List, #1 on the Business Travel News Business 2011 Travel Survey and the Travel Leaders flagship brand was named #1 on Entrepreneur’s latest Franchise 500 list of full-service travel agency franchise businesses.

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Travel Leaders Group ( is transforming travel with a commitment to our vacation and business travel clients via our progressive approach toward each unique travel experience. Having already assisted millions of travelers – through our beginnings as Carlson Leisure Group, a division of Carlson Companies, TraveLeaders and Tzell Travel Group and through the additions of Nexion and – Travel Leaders Group manages leisure, business and franchise travel operations under a variety of diversified divisions and brands. With sales of nearly $17 billion in 2011, Travel Leaders Group not only ranks as the #1 corporate travel management company by Business Travel News, but it is also among the top ten travel companies on the 2011 Travel Weekly Power List. In 2011, Entrepreneur ranked Travel Leaders #1 in the category of “Travel Agencies-Miscellaneous.”