Summer travel advice? Try being nice

Steve Wood/Shutterstock
Steve Wood/Shutterstock
Are you still forgetting to pack your manners when you travel? If you are, then please meet Grace, a flight attendant who recently turned to me for some career advice.

She’s had it up to here with her job, and she wants to know what to do next.

“I’m very aware that I’m in a service position,” she told me. “I am polite, not surly or rude.”

But passengers rarely return the favor.
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Where do TSA agents learn their bad manners?

If you’ve ever been browbeaten, barked at or belittled by a TSA agent — and let’s be honest, who among us hasn’t? — then you’ve got a friend in Sen. Harry Reid (D.-Nev.).
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Oh no, you didn’t! 5 ways travelers have lost their manners

They’re loud. They smell bad. And their clothes would make Mr. Blackwell blush.

What is it about travel that makes people jettison their manners?

Whether it’s the Ugly American or the Entitled Elite, travel has no shortage of unflattering stereotypes. They’ve always been with us. They’ll always be with us. But are their numbers growing?

Hard to say. When it comes to air travel, it’s difficult to tell whether unruly passenger incidents are on the rise. Both the Transportation Security Administration and the Federal Aviation Administration keep records on aircraft incidents, but they’re just the cases they’ve acted on, and don’t necessarily reflect any trends. Same for hotel and cruise incidents. There are no reliable statistics.

But the anecdotes. Oh, the anecdotes!
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