Wacky Air Travel Moments That Are Bound To Trump Any In-Flight Entertainment
Air travel can be a major hassle. Whether it’s the time you have to delegate for the security procedure, taking off your shoes and belt, or getting told by TSA that your contact lens fluid is a danger, it’s not always fun. But you’d be surprised at what absolutely zany moments happen every day in the process.
Airport security services are primarily tasked with keeping passengers safe. And along the way they encounter some truly bizarre incidents and objects. And that doesn’t stop the occasional, shall we say, unique persona from getting into the flight. Check out these hilarious, creepy, and unbelievable air travel moments.
1. He Only Fries First Class
One of the worst possible scenarios in air travel is having a chatterbox arbitrarily seated next to you, with no way for you to avoid their incessant conversation. Thankfully, this conscientious cheeseburger has placed the safety belt strategically over its his mouth to prevent such a thing from happening in the first place.
One has to wonder if there was merely an empty seat by chance, or if the cheeseburger’s emotional support human actually bought another seat for what hopefully wasn’t mistaken for an in-flight snack. According to the gentleman who snagged this priceless snapshot, he specifically shelled out for in-flight WiFi just so he could upload this pic as quickly as humanly possible. Frankly, we totally understand.
2. Quit Falcon Around
It’s no secret that the Saudi royal family is one of the wealthiest dynasties on the planet, with a taste for some seriously luxurious pastimes. For one prince, naturally, taking great care of his collection of falcons was of the utmost importance. So what was he to do when they needed to travel further than their wings would take them?
Enjoying his hobby of falconry was important enough to buy and reserve seats for his 80 taloned treasures! It’s apparently a common enough occurrence that Qatar Airways even has a specific policy about falcons: a maximum of six are allowed in the cabin. But honestly, what would you do if you encountered a sight like this? Air travel: it’s for the birds.
3. Place of Birth: Internationally Skies
It’s the incredible air travel story that made news headlines across the world in 2017. Towards the end of a Jet Airways flight from Saudi Arabia to southern India, a pregnant female passenger prematurely went into labor. It was a harrowing situation for all involved. But the flight crew sprang into action.
Fortunately for all involved, there was a physician on the flight, but the stewardesses also joined in the foray to ensure that their passenger would get through the trying experience safely. Though the flight had to be rerouted to Mumbai, the healthy baby was successfully delivered even before landing. That baby now has a free travel pass with Jet Airways — for life!
4. Complimentary Wookiee
It’s a miracle Chewbacca was able to get through airport security with his bandoleer and crossbow, but at least he managed to safely stow his belongings in the overhead bin. Strangely enough, his fellow passengers don’t seem as starstruck as they ought to be in the presence of the iconic character.
All kidding aside, as suggested by the R2D2 towels draped over each setback, this was a Star Wars-themed flight heading from Vancouver to Tokyo in October 2015. The creative air travel route was launched just months before the first film of the new trilogy was released, and excitement was palpable — even if you can’t see it. Bet he didn’t need a complimentary blanket.
This casual moment of air travel on China Airlines ended up causing quite the stir — and not just because they didn’t have a vegetarian meal to serve this special passenger. This, ladies and gentlemen, is a plush toy, although many around the world initially thought otherwise. A hoax press release in the name of China Airlines certainly boosted the trolling.
The laughable claim was that China Airlines, in the spirit of China’s traditional panda diplomacy, was transferring a real panda to a zoo in the United States. The creative press release that people took at face value claimed it was flying business class — leaving many passengers commenting they were surprised China Airlines even had business class. The snark!
TSA agents, who manage the security checks before air travel through American airports, quite often get a bad rap. But if you have a moment to chat them up, do yourself a favor and ask them about some of the more bizarre items they’ve found that passengers have accidentally left behind.
Luckily, the TSA posts some of the more outlandish items they’ve confiscated or discovered on their Instagram account. This blinged-out grill was accidentally abandoned at the security check at Washington D.C.’s Dulles Airport. But really, if you took this out to pass through the metal detector, how do you forget to put it back in afterward?
7. The Shear Audacity
It’s pretty obvious that you can’t bring knives or a variety of other pointy objects onto a flight in your carry-on luggage. Many people try to break the law by concealing their weaponry. But what was this passenger thinking when they casually slipped this pair of giant scissors into their carry-on and just thought it would slide?
This TSA agent at Nashville International Airport is proudly posing as she brandishes the shears, and she can’t help but crack a grin. These day, even nail scissors don’t get by, so obviously there was no chance that this would make the cut. No matter how glamorous flights can be (or not), they don’t have rose hedges on them. Subtlety, man, subtlety!
8. No Leg Room For You
One of the worst parts of air travel is knowing that whatever might be there with you in the cabin of the plane, it’s going to be staying there until you reach the ground again. That goes for stale air, irritating children, and of course, the occasional stowaway. What would you do if you saw this furry fellow casually ambling about, crawling up your pants leg?
The spider in the photo is indeed real, one of several unfortunate incidents over the past few years in which crawly critters have decided passports are for chumps and that hitching a ride is the way to go. Two tarantulas recently wreaked havoc on a flight from the Dominican Republic to Canada after sneaking on board. No thank you!
9. Turkey’s Newest Flight Attendant?
Few things could be more excruciating than a restless child kicking the seat behind you out of boredom or frustration. But at the very least, you know what to expect. What happens if you’re minding your own business, waiting for take-off, and suddenly you hear from behind you the unmistakable gobble that strikes fear into the hearts of mortals?
Someone should really teach this feathered friend some manners. Doesn’t he know that staring like that, gawking with those beady eyes and open beak, is quite rude in most social settings? Let’s just hope for this passenger’s sake that he’s flying after Thanksgiving. That being said, that Christmas bow around this “fowl” passenger’s neck is a tad disconcerting.
10. Reptile High Club
All Samuel L. Jackson quotes aside, seriously, what the heck led to this surreal scenario? When a snake took a wrong turn out of the Garden of Eden and suddenly appeared slithering about on this Aeromexico flight, it sent passengers scrambling. It’s a special brand of fear when you realize there’s a finite amount of space between you and what you thought only happened in movies.
The flight was grounded within 10 minutes so that the slippery stowaway could be properly removed by animal control. According to reports, the passengers remained surprisingly calm and collected, helping flight attendants to trap the green passenger under blankets. But let’s be real, how in the heck does this dude just waltz on into an airport?
Horrifying, right? But we’ve barely just begun. Keep reading for more incredibly odd air travel moments.
11. Take Me With You
Tasked with keeping air travel as safe as possible, TSA generally know what they’re looking for: concealed weapons, inappropriate party favors, and the occasional perilous tube of toothpaste. But the security guards screening baggage on one 2015 flight from New York’s LaGuardia Airport to Los Angeles were in for a special surprise.
An alarm had gone off for one checked bag, and officers came to investigate. Everyone must have been utterly stupefied when they opened the bag and out jumped this tiny seven-year-old Chihuahua! Apparently the pooch had hopped right in as its owner was in a frenzy of packing. Wonder if it left any presents?
12. When The Seat Belt Sign Turns Off
We get it, you need to stretch your legs every once in a while on those long intercontinental flights. Some choose to get loose by sauntering down the aisles or doing some back-cabin stretching. For these two, it was yoga. We get it, one of the benefits of yoga is the ability to demonstrate your amazing powers of flexibility in random situations, especially in public. But come on folks, is this mid-air display really necessary? Or safe?
We’ve heard of the mile high club, but air travel acroyoga is definitely a new badge of honor we didn’t realize existed. Unfortunately for this limber pair, their fellow passengers seem utterly unmoved by their feats of acrobatics. At least they had the common decency to keep their shoes on.
13. Ravishing In Red
Though many aspects of air travel have changed over the decades, one thing that remains constant is that the flight attendants on your flight will be dressed smartly in a way so formal and crisp that it’s scarcely seen outside of a plane. If this striking server offered you a drink, however, might you blink twice?
Dexterously balancing this drinks tray on his fingertips is none other than Sir Richard Branson. As the Virgin entrepreneur lost a bet to his colleague at AirAsia, it was deemed fitting for him to stay grounded and get a taste of what their jobs are like. That coral lipstick is giving us life, Sir Richard!
14. Animal Plane-t
Sometimes, as clever and beautiful as their feathered friends may be, parrot owners just baffle us. It’s like they pause to ponder why it’s too quiet in their house and feel a need to be screamed at 24/7. So if you happen to come across a cockatoo on your flight, you’re bound to be skeptical.
Fortunately for all on board, it would appear that this cockatoo was cool as a cucumber, and looked calm and collected as can be. But how did it behave once the plane took off? We could expect some crests to raise. Also, what are those markings on its tummy? Is it part of a bird diaper?
15. A Grizzly Discovery
Suffice to say, the passenger caught carrying this was likely not on their way to San Francisco Pride. You can add this curious bottle of bear repellent spray to the list of bizarre items the TSA confiscates every day. It may not be as scary as a knife or a bomb, but make no mistake, this is a potentially powerful weapon in its own right.
The owner of the bear spray must have been so used to carrying it around that they forgot it was in their hand luggage. Would you be at all surprised to learn that this bottle was discovered by TSA at the airport security check in Anchorage, Alaska? It must be pretty wild up there for this to be a must-have accessory!
If you think that’s bizarre, wait ’til you see what else TSA has confiscated.
16. Unbearable Delay
Cue the sad tones of Celine Dion’s “All By Myself.” To add insult to injury, this giant teddy bear was left right next to the trash, a true insult to a gentleman of his sensibilities. So how come this enormous stuffed animal seems so forlorn? He was deemed too big for air travel, but there’s more to the story.
As part of a practical joke, a popular YouTuber decided he’d try to test the TSA and see if he could get his plush buddy onto the plane. He even went so far as to buy the bear his own seat on a flight out of Los Angeles. Seriously, who has that kind of disposable income? It’s simply bar-bear-ic.
17. Wing Seat
In recent years, the concept of bringing emotional-support animals onto flights has taken off in earnest. Some of the more outlandish feathered and furry therapists have been denied entry aboard flights. But Daniel the Duck, pictured here, was polite enough to be permitted onto this short flight from Charlotte to Asheville, North Carolina.
Thankfully, Daniel’s human did something that was incredibly thoughtful towards his fellow passengers. He made sure his friend’s webbed toes were covered, wearing those adorable little red plane slippers. That’s more than can be said for that most awful of air travel phenomena, the occasional passenger who can’t help but unleash their smelly piggies.
18. United Hairlines
We get it, having long and lovely locks can sometimes be cumbersome as you’re trying to get as comfortable as you can in order to snooze in your airplane seat. But if you’ve ever been witness to this in-flight atrocity, then you shall surely know no mercy for your fellow passenger.
Honestly, the thought process behind subjecting your fellow passengers to the unsolicited tendrils of your hair waterfall is an expression of the most complete disregard to humanity. What a shame the TSA doesn’t allow gardening shears to be brought on board in your carry-on luggage. There may yet be a purpose for them.
19. Groom Goes Boom
Now, it goes without saying that there’s no way whatsoever you can bring firearms and explosives with you for air travel, whether placed in your suitcase or on your carry-on. But this groom thought he’d be in the clear if he packed up these novelty tuxedo grenades in his checked luggage. Big, big mistake.
Even if these were fake and probably served some silly purpose either in the wedding ceremony or the bachelor party preceding it (our bet is that it was for the latter), just finding these in checked baggage at Newark’s Liberty International Airport was enough to scramble the bomb squad. Whatever happened to throwing rice, man?
20. Cannon’t Get No Satisfaction
Of all the peculiar items confiscated by TSA agents at the airport security check, this one has got to be pretty high up on the list of downright outrageous. It must have been a lively day at the office when they suddenly discovered an antique cannon barrel in someone’s luggage.
Yes, you read that right. Obviously it was too big to fit in a purse, but this old cannon turret was discovered in a checked bag belonging to a passenger traveling through Kahului Airport on the Hawaiian island of Maui. It might have made more sense if the flight had been coming through the Caribbean, no? Thankfully, it was unloaded.
Wild, right? What’s up ahead will truly boggle your mind.
21. Meat You On The Other Side
We know you love your sandwich meats sliced ever so thin. But do you really have to crank them out while you’re up in the air? One passenger apparently thought so. Believe it or not, TSA snagged this meat slicer out of someone’s hand luggage. They must have been rather baffled.
Naturally, as it is comprised of sharp blades, it’s automatically considered a weapon and therefore forbidden from hand luggage. Let’s just hope that the traveler trying to get through with this curious carry-on object simply didn’t realize that was the case. But honestly, what did they think TSA was — chopped liver?
22. Bling Bling
Sometimes, you’re in a rush to catch your flight, and the TSA screening procedure can be truly inconvenient. But as you take off any metal jewelry, empty your pockets, and untie your shoes, you’ll have to keep a mental inventory of all the items you’ve put in the tray. Not so with this bejeweled watch.
You would think a gold watch from Cartier, encrusted with diamonds, would be the first thing its owner would think of reclaiming after passing through the security check. But oddly enough, this was left behind at the security checkpoint at Newark Airport. It was returned to its owner the next day, worth $100,000.
23. Hank Hill’s Luggage
It’s a mystery what the owner of these propane tanks was thinking when they packed them into their suitcases. Given their flammability, if just the slightest thing were to go wrong, and the tiniest spark would get anywhere near them, it could have spelled certain disaster for the entire flight.
Up in the chilly wilds of Alaska, propane tanks must certainly come in handy for keeping your fires going and getting your cookout on as you enjoy the natural splendor of the Land of the Midnight Sun. But needless to say, the staff at Anchorage Airport were not thrilled with this find.
24. Not A Lavatory
Traveling with infants and toddlers is never fun for anyone involved. Passengers are rarely thrilled by the sight of a little tyke coming onto the aircraft, but from the parents’ end of the equation, it’s all they can do to keep their spawn entertained so as not to incur the wrath of fellow travelers. But not everyone is quite so thoughtful.
You’d have to be seriously foul or forgetful to leave a dirty diaper in your seat back. There’s trashcans right there in the bathroom, or just call over a flight attendant. But this parent’s decision just boggles the mind, and turns the stomach. To have been a fly on the wall when the stewardess discovered this gem while cleaning up post-flight…
Surprisingly enough, this is not the weirdest request the TSA has had to deal with. But one passenger tweeted a question to the flight safety personnel before flying, asking with all seriousness if it was possible to fly with this…uh, unusual companion. After all, with a face like that, it’d be pretty hard to say no, right?
TSA took the request in stride, noting that it’d be fine, but the brick friend would need to be packed away inside a checked baggage. So, now if you ever plan on taking your own brick for a Parisian getaway, you’ll be better prepared. Truly, you learn something new everyday.
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