A few days ago, on the 10th anniversary of 9/11, a couple that allegedly found their way into the bathroom of a Frontier Airlines jet set off suspicions of terrorism, and military jets were called in to escort the plane into Detroit.The FBI concluded that the couple posed no threat, and were not even in the lavatory at the same time, but the incident raised another pressing question–how are flight attendants supposed to deal with travellers who attempt to join the mile-high club mid-flight?
Slate’s Brian Palmer tackles the question today.
Apparently the issue isn’t directly addressed in flight attendant school, but attendants generally “knock, inquire politely, and barge in if necessary,” Palmer writes.
He notes, however, that there’s “one glaring exception” to the norm:
Richard Branson, head of Virgin Atlantic, has pledged that his employees are not the type to “bang on lavatory doors when a couple slips in there.” The airline even installed double beds with privacy screens in some aircraft, for a “more intimate flight.”
In the old days, couples returning from the lavatory were even greeted with champagne and cigarettes by grinning stewardesses on Virgin Atlantic flights, Palmer notes.
And while that’s no longer the case–and the mile-high club has moved largely underground in the post-9/11 world, passengers will be relieved to note that it’s extremely rare for mid-flight sex to lead to prosecution, except in cases where the pair refuses to stop when caught.
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