Air travel is a necessary part of modern life, but it’s not always a smooth ride. With so many strangers crammed into a confined space for extended periods of time, is it any wonder that things can get a bit unpleasant?
Well, if you think you’ve had some terrible experiences on aeroplanes – think again. These gross stories from 21 Reddit users show that things could always be worse. Keep in mind, these stories are just for fun as INSIDER cannot independently authenticate them.
“A grown man biting his toenails.”
“I saw a grown man with his shoes off biting his toenails.” – Reddit user YoloSwag69bruh
“The puke rolled and splashed down the aisle.”
“We had a school group of young children sitting in the front of the plane. On takeoff, one little boy leaned over into the aisle and threw up. The puke rolled and splashed down the aisle almost all the way to the back galley.” – Reddit user runLikeYerBeingChasd
“The man beside me had really, really bad gas.”
“On a 14 (ish) hour flight from Vancouver, Canada to Shanghai, China. The old man beside me had really, really bad gas the whole way through. Things got really bad when he curled up in his seat to sleep,but pointed towards me so he could face his wife. … I swallowed my pride and a whole lot of gas that day.” – Reddit user philipjeremypatrick
“She began vomiting all over my arm and lap.”
“The woman sleeping next to me started to convulse, and she began vomiting all over my right arm and lap. All I could do was reach up and hit the call attendant button. After 30 seconds she woke up with no recollection of what happened, and it had never happened before.”They relocated the woman and I excused myself to clean up.” – Reddit user Frisbeewill225
“He propped his stinky feet on my armrest.”
“I was on a transatlantic flight a couple years ago and the man in the seat behind me took his shoes and socks off right after takeoff and propped his stinky feet (complete with crusty toenails) on my armrest. I shut that down immediately and told him under no circumstances were his crusty feet going to be sitting on my armrest for the next seven hours.”He moved his feet back to the floor but didn’t put his shoes/socks back on so I kept getting whiffs of his stinky feet. I complained to the flight attendant not long after that (the two people next to me spoke up too) and she told Stinky Feet Man to put his shoes back on.”Thankfully he complied. I’m honestly not sure what I would have done if he’d been more of a jerk about it. Why do people think it’s acceptable to take their shoes off on planes? WHY?” – Reddit user msi12345
“Changing a baby’s diaper on the tray table.”
“[Someone was] changing a baby’s diaper on the tray table.” – Reddit user savemejebus0
“My wife farted.”
“My wife farted. It stank so bad that I could hear people complain three rows back. She pretended to be asleep. An air hostess walked up to me and started blasting me with some flowery air purifier. I got the full blame for it.” – Reddit user cindyjohno
“Projectile vomiting in my face.”
“Sitting across from a young mum who had an infant and a 2-year-old. She had her hands full with the 2-year-old and so I offered to hold her baby. I’m a dad. She agreed and I held the baby, fed her a bottle, was patting her on the back to soothe her and let her fall asleep and she did fall asleep, but not before projectile vomiting in my face and down my shirt. On the bright side, I’m pretty sure I earned karma that day.” – Reddit user trazoc
“My colostomy bag leaked.”
“I had a colostomy bag for about six months to let my colon heal after an accident where it was perforated (I fell and was impaled on a barbed wire fencepost). On a plane, coming off painkillers so I had really bad diarrhoea – it turns out my colostomy bag is not attached correctly, where the hole in my gut is not lined up with the hole in the bag.
“I’m dozing off when I feel warmth and smell this horrible smell of fresh s— – my colostomy bag leaked copious amounts of liquid s— all over the front of me. Stunk up the cabin badly – had to go into the bathroom and try to get s— off of my dress shirt and slacks. Stayed in as long as I could – came out soaking wet and about as embarrassed as I’ve ever been.” – Reddit user derraboof
“The dude had been sick in my hood.”
“At the end of my trip to Canada, all I had was a hoodie, no clean T-shirts. I chuck everything in the hold of the plane except my tablet and headphones. So I am queuing with my boarding pass, and this dude behind me makes this weird sound, but I’m British (so obviously I don’t turn round). Get on the plane and the air conditioning is cold, like, REALLY cold, so I pull down my sleeves, put my headphones on and pull my hood up.”Yeah. So, anyhow, that dude had been sick in my hood.” – Reddit user Jblonde002
“Toenails were flying in all sorts of directions.”
“I was once on an aeroplane sitting in first class. There was a man sitting in my row that was clipping his toenails and they were FLYING in all sorts of directions. He then proceeded to take that long metal thing on toenail clippers, clean out his toe jam, and wipe it all over his seat.” – Reddit user wahteverr
“He projectile vomits in my lap.”
“Business class was overbooked, so I volunteered to move back to economy class in an aisle seat by the bathroom. I got a two-for-one deal for doing so.”While sitting in my new seat, right before taxiing, a kid and his mum came running toward the bathroom. Right before the kid gets to the bathroom, he projectile vomits in my lap.”I cleaned my clothes the best I could, but I smelled like puke the entire way back home.”From feast to famine.” – Reddit user Anastik
“I had no choice but to reach under their butt.”
“This was when I was 15. I was sat in the middle seat, in between a tour group that must have contained a lot of first-time flyers.”Cut to the flight attendants announcing to the passengers to fasten our seatbelts. The two people on either side of me started freaking out because they couldn’t find their seatbelt. I tried telling them they probably sat on them.”They were screaming and other people in the tour group started freaking out too. The flight attendants came, but had a hard time understanding them through the screaming.”I was also trying to explain to everyone what was happening. One of the people next to me finally calmed down enough and asked me for help him/her to find the seatbelt. I had no choice but to reach under his/her butt, free the seatbelt, reach over, and fasten it for him/her. S/he yelled something to the rest of the tour group and I guess they figured it out since there were whoops and cheers. I had to help the other person next to me and reach under his/her butt too. They were both sweaty.” – Reddit user eraser_dust
“The husband decided to take off his socks and shoes.”
“I was seated in between [a woman] and her husband. … About 30 minutes into the flight, the husband decided to take off his socks and shoes. The smell was so bad. I didn’t have the courage to ask the man to put his shoes back on, but luckily the passenger in front asked a flight attendant to tell the man to put his shoes back on.” – Reddit user Justinoh711
“This kid smelled absolutely awful.”
“My husband and I took a trip to Maui when I was 14 weeks pregnant with our first. A babycation if you will. Well while waiting for our (delayed) flight home, a young hipster type man passed us in the waiting lobby and EVERY SINGLE SOUL waiting covered their mouth and/or nose and immediately began to point and whisper. This kid (early 20s, perhaps?) smelled absolutely awful. I mean the worst – THE WORST – B.O. I think is humanly possible, seriously. It hung in the air for ages after he passed by. With my uber-sensitive preggo nose, I was disgusted, but we walked around a bit pre-flight and moved on.”Fast forward to boarding. … Here he comes. Here comes the m———–‘ ‘plane stinker.’ At the time he is coming, my husband and I were taking post-Hawaii selfies on the plane. The exact moment that the plane stinker sits down in the open seat next to me is captured. It is priceless. My hormonal preggo senses are going wild and it’s such a terrible smell that I just start crying. My husband is embarrassed by me and mad that I’m crying but I give zero f—–. It’s gross, it’s nasty, people around us are asking to change seats. I wrap a scarf around my face the whole flight home and bury my face in my husband’s arm.”It was still the worst smell I’ve smelt to this day and I have two kids who have produced some special things.” – Reddit user Shelbstars
“A little dog puked and pooped everywhere.”
“I was on a plane the other day and the lady behind me had a little dog that puked and then pooped everywhere. The stewards were passing out bags of ground coffee for people to hold to their faces to avoid the stench.” – Reddit user WPBDoc
“She straight up s— her pants.”
“Was flying back to the upper Midwest from Jamaica (fairly long flight) and hit a big storm over the ocean before hitting the mainland. My buddy was sitting next to me and had just gotten back from the bathroom and we hit some major turbulence and didn’t have his seatbelt on when the plane dropped a good 20 or 30 ft.
“It was like a full freefall moment out of the movies, everybody’s drinks and all, and he flew up and hit the ceiling and then came back down. Meanwhile, a lady in the row next to us starts hyperventilating and screaming that she doesn’t want to die over and over. She also straight up s— her pants. Turbulence eventually went away, but the smell of her s— lasted the remaining three hours of the flight.” – Reddit user dunord218
“I saw a flight attendant get vomit up the back of her legs.”
“I once saw a flight attendant get vomit all up the back of her legs.”I had a great view of it because I was the one vomiting all over the back of her legs.” – Reddit user hiddenstar13
Visit INSIDER’s homepage for more.
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.