I’m a flight attendant — here are 9 surprising ways to get kicked off a flight (2024)

These reasons might fly under the radar for many.

While it’s well known that fights, bomb threats and other overt antics can get flyers forcibly deplaned, there are less obvious jettison-worthy offenses. One flight attendant has shared some seemingly innocuous behaviors and situations that’ll apparently get you booted off the aircraft, which she detailed in a TikTok video with 1 million views.

“Beware! Airlines can deny you boarding for these reasons!” air hostess Sandra Jeenie Kwon — who goes by @jeanie.weenie on the Platform — warned in the clip to her over 10.7 million followers.

Both puking and appearing intoxicated will land you on the no-fly list, per the video.


“While boarding if a flight attendant can sense that you might be a little sick and about to puke, they can deny you boarding,” the flight attendant, who works fork an unspecified airline, explained. “I know some of you like to drink before a flight but just remember if you look way too drunk, we can deny you boarding.”

In fact, inebriation is one of several things flight attendants check for while welcoming passengers aboard the aircraft. So exercise some booze control.

Elsewhere in the clip, Kwon explained that arriving “barefoot” can also get flyers bounced from the plane. Alas this same rule doesn’t apply to passengers who remove their footwear inflight, as evidenced by the myriad pedi crime photos circulating online.

By a similar token, “smelling bad” won’t fly either, per the crew member, who suggests that people enlist a family member or friend to “sniff” them before a flight to see if they past the smell test.

This rule also holds true for flyers with foul-smelling luggage as well, so maybe leave the durian at the door.


Depending on the airline, dressing “inappropriately” can earn passengers someone a one-way ticket off the plane, Kwon explained.

“Some airlines have a dress code but no dress code,” Kwon explained. “Clearly, if you’re naked, you’re not getting on. But some airlines will actually deny you boarding if you’re wearing something a little bit too sexy.”

In other words, this ain’t that kind of runway.

Needless to say, this inflight fashion policing has been a contentious issue of late with some passengers claiming they’ve been flagged for wearing something as innocuous as a corset.


On a more sensitive note, plus-size flyers may be asked to leave if they can’t be accommodated as this can be a safety hazard.

Specifically, “if you cannot safely put on your seatbelt with a seatbelt extender, the flight attendants can deny you boarding,” warned Kwon.


Beware! Airlines can deny you boarding for these reasons! #flights

♬ original sound – JEENIE

Similarly, many airlines require flyers of size to purchase an extra seat if they’re unable to fasten said extender or if they’re too big to fit in one sky chair — a policy that’s sparked outrage in the body-positive community.

In fact, just having a seatbelt extender precludes passengers from sitting in an exit row due to safety concerns.


“Seatbelt extensions can obstruct the emergency exits,” travel blog The Points Guy explained. “Seatbelt extensions potentially become entangled in the seatbelts of nearby passengers, become snagged on nearby objects, or create a tripping hazard for passengers evacuating the aircraft.”

They continued, “The second reason passengers requiring additional assistance or seatbelt extensions due to their size cannot be seated in the exit row is due to decreased mobility.”

The last — and perhaps most controversial — situation that can get one rejected is looking “really pregnant.” Kwon explained that if “you don’t have a doctor’s note to prove how many weeks you are or if you can fly, they may deny you boarding.”

Policies vary depending on the airline. United airlines, for instance requires expectant mothers to have a doctor’s note by their third trimester.

“Once you reach 36 weeks, you’ll need a letter from your obstetrician saying it’s okay for you to travel,” they write on their site. “THIS LETTER MUST: Be dated within 3 days of the start of your trip.”

This punishment might seem cruel and unusual; however, airline staffers aren’t equipped to deal with prenatal medical complications or — worse yet — someone having a baby on board.

But don’t even think about protesting these policies because if you’re “disrespectful,” “we can deny you boarding,” declared the flight attendant.

I’m a flight attendant — here are 9 surprising ways to get kicked off a flight (2024)


What are some of the things that can get a passenger kicked out of the plane? ›

There are a few different reasons flight crews remove passengers.
  • Not Smelling Your Freshest. ...
  • Flying with a Dangerous Pet. ...
  • Smuggling Contraband on the Plane. ...
  • Being Drunk or Intoxicated on the Plane. ...
  • Abusive Pasengers.
Apr 20, 2024

Can flight attendants kick you out? ›

Moving onto the more unusual reasons, she says cabin crew can boot you off the flight if you arrive barefoot. On a more sensitive note, she added: "For our larger passengers, if you cannot safely put on your seatbelt with a seatbelt extender, the flight attendants can deny you boarding.

What are 3 things flight attendants notice about passengers? ›

It might sound ridiculously obvious, but cabin crew are primed to hone in on your luggage. They check things like if your luggage has been tagged for cargo, if you're wearing a fanny pack, the size of your personal bag, and if you look like you're struggling to carry your luggage.

Why do flight attendants sit on their hands during takeoff and landing? ›

"The aim is to keep the body in a rigid pose so that if there was any impact in an unplanned emergency, the body is damaged less," Lim explained. "This keeps body movement restricted so that there is less chance of injury if there was an impact."

What behavior will get you kicked off an airplane? ›

Both puking and appearing intoxicated will land you on the no-fly list, per the video. “While boarding if a flight attendant can sense that you might be a little sick and about to puke, they can deny you boarding,” the flight attendant, who works fork an unspecified airline, explained.

Can you get kicked off a plane for coughing? ›

Although in the vast majority of cases, an airline will not step in if you have a cough, they are allowed to deny boarding to passengers if they feel someone is too ill to make the trip or could be infectious.

Is it illegal to hit a flight attendant? ›

Assaulting a flight crew member is punishable by up to 20 years in federal prison and a fine of up to $250,000. If a dangerous weapon is used during the assault or intimidation, the punishment includes up to life in prison.

Is it illegal to insult a flight attendant? ›

As just explained, interference is a civil wrong, and assault is a criminal offense. And in fact, any sort of offensive touching or threats against a crewmember can constitute both interference and assault.

What happens if a flight is overbooked and no one volunteers? ›

In such cases, airlines must ask for volunteers to give up their seats in exchange for compensation, which can include things like meal vouchers, cash, or credit for a future flight. If there are not enough volunteers, airlines may involuntarily deny boarding to some passengers.

What do flight attendants reveal the first thing they notice? ›

Because their first concern is safety, what flight attendants notice about you has much to do with your ability to keep yourself and others safe. They'll make a mental note of passengers who are in good shape and who can help lift heavy items and lend a hand if necessary.

What do flight attendants say when they find you attractive? ›

'When you're standing there going 'buh-bye, thank you, take care' etc when you see someone you fancy, you say 'cheerio'. ' 'You need to do it with a buddy and the challenge is to keep a straight face. '

What are the red spots on flight attendants? ›

Observations of standard work practices and procedures of flight attendants revealed that the red spots were caused by red ink flaking off the life vests. The vests used for demonstrations were not actually functional and were labelled “Demo Only” with ink containing a litholrubine chrome molybdate orange pigment.

Why do flight attendants wear red lipstick? ›

Heather Poole is a former flight attendant and the New York Times bestselling author of Cruising Attitude. She revealed that the reason cabin crew members wear bright lipstick on flights is, “so passengers can read your lips during an emergency.”

Why do flight attendants always keep a pen with them? ›

This is because in case of an emergency, we may need to write down passenger info for medical personnel, or information from the flight deck. This is also why when passengers ask us to borrow a pen, we often say no. And also because some of y'all are not that hygienic.

Why do flight attendants ask to open the window shades? ›

"Raising your window shade during takeoff and landing makes it easier for the flight attendants to assess any exterior hazards, like fire or debris, that might interfere with an emergency evacuation," pilot Patrick Smith of AskThePilot.com tells Travel + Leisure.

What does it take to get kicked off a plane? ›

Being Disrespectful to Staff and Other Passengers or Making a Stink About Them. As in our TikTok example, disrespecting anyone on a flight would make their trip less enjoyable. This is even more true if you throw a fit over any minor inconvenience.

What knocks you out on a plane? ›

Tylenol PM

The over-the-counter medication is easy to pick up at the drugstore when you're stocking up on travel-sized shampoos and other carry-on essentials. Diphenhydramine, the same antihistamine found in Benadryl, will likely put you to sleep, though you may pay the price once you land.

What kills passengers in a plane crash? ›

In many crashes the aircraft structure collapses and the individual is injured by impact with the airframe. These injuries can include amputations, major lacerations and crushing. When the structure collapses, the victims may become trapped within the wreckage and die of fire, drowning or traumatic asphyxia.

How to get banned from flying? ›

Even more minor disruptive behavior such as blocking crew member access or disobeying instructions can get you banned from an airline or all airlines if it rises to the FAA level and that can result in fines of up to $25,000 per violation.


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