Written by Staff Writer at CNN
It’s a moment that could be greeted with widespread indifference in most other walks of life.
To those enjoying a flight in commercial aeroplanes around the world, it just seems normal to us. A short period of time spent in silence after hitting the button to start the engines.
The emotions that flight induces are the same reasons it creates in most of us a sense of isolation. You’re treated, at times, like a cattle (the flight attendants, of course, are called cattle) that simply has to get out of the way and stay seated.
But, based on the reactions of crewmembers who have made the decision to temporarily take the veil of privacy off themselves, there are actually some people on long-haul flight who actually thrive on this particular experience.
Fortunately, these are only a fraction of the general public who are experiencing first-hand what a pleasure it is to be cut loose from the rest of the world.
And as it turns out, these air travelers are getting more access to this kind of personal space than we ever imagined.
“Many passengers enjoy the freedom to wear headphones and consume their own beverage when flight attendants aren’t around. You can go to your window seat and actually escape the world, which is unique in the air,” says David Shaywitz, an associate professor of management at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School and a frequent traveler.
Even the crewmembers of commercial flights are not immune to getting in on the action.
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And by keeping the intercom quiet, it means that you can actually answer the phone, read and get some sleep. If you want to read in your room, you can — for a fee.
So, where does that leave us? Could we as air travelers make this perfect serenity more readily available?
For starters, the answer to that question might lie in just slightly altering the time of travel in relation to the time of takeoff. If we leave the airport for the departure terminal earlier, the employees can work for a little longer before departing and allowing more free reign.
Secondly, it’s also possible to find an airline that offers at least some portion of personal space to its passengers. After all, if there’s no privacy, is there really a flight?
And even though some airlines think they understand the value of comfort, the answer is still no. Most people book for a little bit of privacy and find that they get an absolute lack of it, even though that privacy isn’t really worth much.
Which means that those people that enjoy it are more likely to stay for a long time and become regulars.
What does it mean for the future of air travel?
For starters, these kind of perks might be the result of increased competition, so airlines will seek to differentiate themselves through more extravagant offerings.
And it’s hard to ignore the fact that the fact that airlines provide more private space might ultimately reduce the complaints they get from those who hate flying.
Of course, some airlines might try to trade in on the trend of never-ending day but also bring in people who are willing to forgo the aircraft for a good long stay in a hotel.
What does this mean for the flight attendants of today? According to Shaywitz, these folk likely do not care about new kinds of perks that airlines provide.
In fact, the longer these airline employees stay with the company, the better their prospects in the future. This, of course, will likely result in more jobs, and a better future for all.