Go Back  Fodor's Travel Talk Forums > Travel Topics > Air Travel
Reload this Page >

Differences between foreign and U.S. airlines

Differences between foreign and U.S. airlines

Sep 15th, 2008, 04:37 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 3,291
Differences between foreign and U.S. airlines

I would like to start a thread on the differences between U.S. and foreign airlines. No opinions please, just post things that were different.

1. On many foreign airlines, they say, when the fasten seatbelt sign is turned off, this will be your indication that you can used approved electronic devices.

2. British Airways always calls it a "Mobile" Phone.

3. British Airways usually says, "20 minutes to landing, we will be turning on the Fasten Seatbelt sign at this time."

4. On Philippine Airlines and Qantas, if the Fasten Seat Belt Sign comes on during meal service, flight attendants must return their carts and sit down and fasten their seatbelt.
wally34949 is offline  
Sep 15th, 2008, 05:17 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 5,271
For the most part in Europe, what are called cell phones in the USA are called mobile phones so that's not an airline thing more or less.

I know AA makes the same annoucement regarding use of approved electronic devices.

Also, normally on most American airlines the pilot comes on giving the "vital" information such as temperature and the direction of landing and usually includes a statement he (or she) will be turning on the seat belt sign shortly so do your personal business now.

Finally, regarding cell (mobile) phones, in the USA it is now legal to turn on and use a mobile phone, at the discretion of the airline as soon as the plane is off the active runway (not that I pay attention to that anyway; as soon as the wheels touch down, on goes my phone) while I believe, at least at LHR, it is still "illegal" to use your mobile phone while taxing (not that anybody pays attention to that anyway).
xyz123 is offline  
Sep 15th, 2008, 07:00 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 24,001
at least at LHR, it is still "illegal" to use your mobile phone while taxing (not that anybody pays attention to that anyway).

This is the case at virtually every European airport I have been to recently. I would presume that the US airlines need to follow the same rules, but habit may mean one gets conflicting messages.
travelgourmet is offline  
Sep 15th, 2008, 07:38 AM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 5,271
Actually, as I remember, what happened is that the agency regulating air travel in the USA relaxed the rules and allowed airlines, at their discretion, to allow use of cell phones as soon as planes left the active runways and taxied to the gate. It is now almost a given in the USA that as soon as the plane turns off the active runway, almost everybody turns on their cell phones and start calling loved ones and whomever they're safely on the ground.

Whether the eu has done the same thing, I don't know. I do know I pay no attention to that and as soon as the plane turns off the active runway at LHR, I turn on my mobile phone.

Note that in all case use of a cell phone is prohibited while in immigration and customs areas (this rule I do obey, it's an understandable and government rule unlike the rules prohibiting use of cell phones on the airplane which are simply done by the airlines for whatever reasons, good or bad.
xyz123 is offline  
Sep 15th, 2008, 08:05 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 4,466
why would you pay no attention to the rule and switch on your phone? especially as they ALWAYS say do NOT use phone etc till well inside the terminal?
Smeagol is offline  
Sep 15th, 2008, 08:44 AM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 5,271
...because it is a silly rule that has nothing to do with safety or anything like that. It is simple a rule to hassle passengers (just as the nonsense that you are not allowed to use a cell phone in flight because it might interfere with the navigational equipment...that has long since been shown to be nonsense; but I do follow that rule).
xyz123 is offline  
Sep 15th, 2008, 09:06 AM
  #7  
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 19,881
<<< It is simple a rule to hassle passengers >>>

It's to ensure that if something goes wrong before people get off the plane then the crew can get the attention of the passengers and not worry about them moaning about they are making an important call as the plane burns around them
alanRow is offline  
Sep 15th, 2008, 09:16 AM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 4,466
XYZ i guess you must be REALLY important that you need your phone on as soon as you land.... but hey each to their own, as long as it doesnt endanger my or my familys life.
Smeagol is offline  
Sep 15th, 2008, 09:32 AM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 5,271
alan...

Then why is it allowed in the USA if that's a problem?
xyz123 is offline  
Sep 15th, 2008, 04:09 PM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 1,483
<<Then why is it allowed in the USA if that's a problem?>>

Just like, in most states of the US, you're allowed to drive and use your cell phone at the same time, in most other countries its a very serious offence.

Of course if its allowed in the US the rest of the world must have got it wrong!

Geordie


Geordie is offline  
Sep 16th, 2008, 05:24 AM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 2,032
On some intra-Europe flights, some business class seats are simply 3-across coach seats with the middle seat blocked.
NoFlyZone is offline  
Sep 16th, 2008, 06:19 AM
  #12  
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 24,001
On some intra-Europe flights, some business class seats are simply 3-across coach seats with the middle seat blocked.

On some (KLM, for example) they don't even block the middle seat.
travelgourmet is offline  
Sep 16th, 2008, 06:59 AM
  #13  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 5,271
Geordie..

Let me make it clear, that's not the reason I brought up the question of what's allowed in the USA; of course I don't think just because something is allowed in the USA it should be allowed throughout the world....

However, I made the point because I would never do anything to endanger my safety or anybody else's safety. The fact it's allowed in the USA, at least to me, means there is no safety issue involved. So using a mobile phone, once the plane has turned off the active runway, is a personal choice I make with the belief it is a harmless activity. In reality, I don't make any phone calls but I do check text messages and whether there is anything in voice mail. My text messages include sports scores I am interested in especially after a long flight.

I do remember, however, one time arriving at LHR in August 2006 and us stopping in a holding pattern for 15 to 20 minutes and nobody telling us anything. Almost everybody took out their mobile phones and that's when we discovered about the bomb threat that didn't allow us to get to the gate (all departing flights were being held). That was one time it came in handy.

It remains my opinion that the airlines are trying to figure out ways they can gouge their passengers into using overpriced phones on the planes. It has long ago been shown the claim that use of mobile phones can interfere with the plane's navigation system is total nonsense although I suppose it might be uncomfortable to be seated next to somebody yapping on his cell phone for an entire flight (not that it would work while crossing the pond).

The thread is entitled the way US and foreign airlines differ and that was simply one way.
xyz123 is offline  
Sep 16th, 2008, 08:43 AM
  #14  
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 4,359
I noticed on a recent US flight that passengers are allowed to wrap themselves in blankets during taxi and take off. (LAX/HNL)

I also noticed on a US flight that items were allowed in the emergency exit.(same flight)

On another flight I took earlier this year, the flight was cancelled but my luggage was sent on another flight without me (DFW/ORD). This is not allowed in other countries.

But my mind is put at ease because if it is allowed in the US, it must mean there are no safety issues with any of the above.
Odin is offline  
Sep 16th, 2008, 09:07 AM
  #15  
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 24,001
I also noticed on a US flight that items were allowed in the emergency exit.(same flight)

You are confusing application of the rule with actually having the rule. By this logic, we can say that it is okay to stand up while taxi-ing in Europe, simply because I see it invariably happen almost every time I fly within Europe.

On another flight I took earlier this year, the flight was cancelled but my luggage was sent on another flight without me (DFW/ORD). This is not allowed in other countries.

Which countries is that? There is a big difference between taking a no-shows luggage off, as opposed to re-routing baggage because of re-routings or lost baggage. I have certainly had luggage fly on planes without me between LHR and CPH, AMS and CPH, and OSL and CPH, within the past 12 months.
travelgourmet is offline  
Sep 16th, 2008, 09:48 AM
  #16  
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 489
The entire concept of removing luggage for a "no show" passenger is a security myth IMO. If a suicide bomber wanted to blow up a plane he would surely not check his "rigged" baggage and then not show up to "ring alarm bells". The last thing he is worried about is his own life - hence: suicide bomber; he would be on the plane with us.
As pointed out here - luggage frequently travels without its owner anyway.
I know, it's slightly off topic, but I wanted to share this - sorry wally34949.
Paulchili is offline  
Sep 16th, 2008, 11:10 AM
  #17  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 2,049
Not all terrorists are suicide bombers. In fact, I recall reading some years ago of terrorists who placed explosives in innocent's luggage. That is why you have to take care not to leave your baggage unattended, or to take items from other passengers, once you are in the sterile zone.

I don't think having your baggage put on another plane by the airline is a risk, because a terrorist would not be able to predict when that would happen. But allowing a plane to carry luggage checked by a no-show could certainly present a risk, probably greater than the marginal security procedures employed with cargo.

As to the original poster, I don't see a lot of difference between foreign and domestic airlines on the same flights (excluding, of course, the universally acclaimed service on some luxury asian carriers), so instead of limiting oneself to only foreign or only domestic airlines wouldn't be of much value. A better evaluation would be between the individual airlines, foreign and domestic, that fly where you are going, and perhaps even between aircraft of the same airline on the same flight (a lot of people prefer, for example, a 767 over a 757.
clevelandbrown is offline  
Sep 16th, 2008, 12:32 PM
  #18  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 15,112
The entire concept of removing luggage for a "no show" passenger is a security myth IMO. If a suicide bomber wanted to blow up a plane he would surely not check his "rigged" baggage and then not show up to "ring alarm bells".

There is a bit of a logic problem here.

1) He would not be a suicide bomber if he didn't show up.

2) If a would-be checked-bag bomber was concerned that being a no-show would "ring alarm bells" then that would be proof it is not a myth.
mrwunrfl is offline  
Sep 16th, 2008, 05:38 PM
  #19  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 14,781
As far as the original question...

On every Singapore Air flight I've been on, an announcement is made instructing passengers to keep their shoes on during take off and landing.

Melnq8 is offline  
Sep 16th, 2008, 05:45 PM
  #20  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 14,781
A few more -

On every Middle Eastern and Indonesian airline I've flown there's a prayer to Allah before the safety video is shown.

Many Middle Eastern airlines don't serve alcohol.

During Ramadan, food isn't served on some Middle Eastern airlines until after the sun sets. On Singapore Air, the flight attendants go through the cabin offering dates and water to fasting Muslims as soon as the day's fasting is over.
Melnq8 is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy -

FODOR'S VIDEO

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 12:08 AM.