Have You EVER Done This When Taking Off in an Airplane?

Take off when flying to some can be a huge roller coaster adventure.

an airplane in the sky
Hold on

For me, it is a scary ride from hell.

Take off is the part of flying I hate the most.

The thoughts that run through my head when flying cannot conceive how the plane can really get up and so I convince myself we are going down.

Every damn time.

There are plenty of tips I can offer you for take-off to ease your mind.

You could read a book, do the Sudoku puzzles, start watching the movies or listen to music, or chat to the person beside you, maybe even hold their hand. (here is my flight ritual to overcome my fear of flying)

There is one thing, however, that you should NEVER do.

It was something I had never even considered before as being an option until it was brought to my attention recently on our Air Asia X flight from Kuala Lumpur to Australia.

The plane had just taken off and I was coping all right, thanks to Nicole from Planning with Kids, who diverted my mind from plane crash and burn by talking about blogging.

The plane was gaining altitude when suddenly a loud noise came from in front of us. I jumped from fright thinking for sure that this was IT.

The air hostess, strapped in her seat diagonally across from us, whipped her head around, horror stricken over her face.

We all swung our heads towards the noise.

Out from the toilet door, ever so casually, an elderly woman stepped with a friendly smile upon her face and a wobbling of her fragile legs.

The shaking plane from turbulence and take off speeds causing her to almost topple to the floor.

Our eyes popped wide open in disbelief before we erupted into fits of giggles.

The air hostess did not find it amusing.

She ordered her to sit in the empty seat in front of her. The old lady seemed to give the shoulder shrugging reply of,

“What did I do wrong? I just needed to go to the toilet. When you gotta go, you gotta go.”

“You MUST not get out of your seat until the seat belt light goes off” she spat with venom.

Nicole and I continued to laugh until we hit cruising altitude.

“How the hell did she manage to go on the toilet, while taking off?”

It was the most random hilarious moment I have experienced flying on a plane.

So my number one tip for you for take-off when flying is to NEVER ever sit on the toilet.

You will get told off by the air hostess and give everyone a great laugh and a story to tell.

What crazy incidents have you witnessed whilst flying?

47 thoughts on “Have You EVER Done This When Taking Off in an Airplane?”

  1. Taking off is always the scariest… I always try to read to get my mind off of IT… now I’ll just think of this!

  2. Kevin aka EyeTravelSolo

    Take off & landings are no prob. for me, we’re till close to the ground. 🙂 It’s when we hit Cruising altitude and hit drop of 10 feet that makes the Panic sweat start, I just know we going for a 20,000 ft. nose dive & it’s going to take a couple of minutes. Thank God for those Little Bottles & the drinks before boarding the plane… 🙂

  3. Flying is fun! Takeoff and landings are my favorite, what’s scary is landing in the pitch black and the plane is turning (banking) left and right as it makes its way to the airport and then finally seeing city lights below you.

    If anybody needs takeoff and landing companions, I’m it!

    1. Flying in the dark is a little scary and the plane banking freaks me out. I take a sharp intake of breath as I think we are rolling 🙂

      1. Its the banking left and right that freaks me out when landing. I always thought that a plane approaches the runway in a smooth and straight forward flight.. no one told me that it does a left swing then right. My worry is always that it may decide to land on a wing and …

      2. Wilbur the rabbi

        Y’all are weeners. The probability of dieing in a plane crash is similar to being struck by lightning 7 times in your life. The chance if fatality is 5 times higher during the drive to the airport than the flight. I was on a flight one time that experienced very severe turbulence. The flight attendants came running down the aisles grabbing drinks telling people to sit down & buckle up. Just as the last flight attendant buckled up the plane dropped several hundred feet in half a second. This was followed by shaking so violent I thought the plane would surely come apart. The overhead bins were coming open luggage was falling everywhere. People were screaming, several people were praying out loud for a higher power to save them. I’m sure most people on that flight thought it would be there last, I have to say it was a very terrifying minute or so. After that nothing scares me on a plane I just remember that situation & that everyone got off safely.

    2. I have to agree for me take-offs and landings are the most interesting part of flying. The anticipation of that big moment and seeing what parts of a city I can recognise.

  4. When I flew from Sydney to Perth last February, I was sitting next to a middle aged guy (okay, he was a redneck) who told me he had never flown before. As we’re preparing for take off they make the announcement to turn off electronics and switch phones to flight mode – he was fiddling with his crappy Nokia. I ignored him as I was trying to get some shut eye. As the plane starts gaining altitude, he starts whinging about something so I turn to him and ask what’s wrong, and he says his texts don’t seem to be going through. I was just like “OMFG! You can’t have your phone on! It interferes with the plane, we could CRASH!” Needless to say, I know I was being a little melodramatic, but it was effective as he promptly turned off his phone and went back to drinking his VB at 8am.

    1. Anyone who drinks VB at anytime of the day is to be feared!
      Hilarious!! Some people present themselves in your life just to give you a great belly laugh. Love how you shut him up!

  5. Oh my god, what?! Take off is the worst part for me and there is absolutely NO WAY I would be able to handle it on the toilet, hahaha!

    What an amazing story!

  6. I am so surprised this little old lady managed to stay in the toilet while the plane was taking off! This reminds me of the movie Tommy Boy where Chris Farley makes a ruckus in the bathroom.

    1. i kept wondering the same thing about the flight attendants. I would have thought they would have to check bums on seats before taking off. I giggled for the rest of the flight!

  7. That’s interesting how so many people consider the takeoff the scariest… When I use to fear flying, it was the landing I was terrified of. During takeoff its all smooth (once the wheels are off) but when it lands, I just picture the tiny wheels just wobbeling from the force of the plane, not to mention all landings are a little jerky.

    1. oh no!! Don’t give my mind something to worry about for landing now!! It is weird how different people find different things scary. I just can’t imagine the plane getting up in the sky. I think when it is landing at least I know it is coming down

    2. Wilbur the rabbi

      Take off is by far the most dangerous. If anything happens during the takeoff roll or shortly after there is a much higher chance of disaster than if it happens at altitude or while landing. This is why you can’t do anything but stare at the seat in front of you until you reach 10,000 feet. The most dangerous time in a flight is just before you leave the tarmac until you reach 10,000 feet, specifically the first 500 after rotation. If anything happens during this 30 sec or so chances of disaster are over 90% that’s why the landing in the Hudson in 09 was so miraculous. That plane sucked a bird into the engine just as the gear left the tarmac, most pilots would not have been able to safely land that plane.

  8. Frankly, being on the toilet during takeoff strikes me as very practical if you’re of a nervous disposition.

    That said, I’d be worried about pressure changes as you gain altitude quickly. Being on toilet during takeoff – tolerable. Being sucked into the toilet during takeoff – BAD.

    *Disclaimer: I know nothing about airplane plumbing. I’m just a worrier. Thanks.*

    1. Hilarious comment. I am sitting here chuckling away! I am a nervous flyer so maybe the toilet is where I should be. I do worry about getting sucked down the toilet sometimes but I am insane

  9. Not much surprises me when it comes to AirAsia flights. I’ve seen people let their kids run all over and jump on the seats in the middle of a flight, parents changing their kids clothes (though thankfully no diaper changing…yet…) and people blasting music like it was their own personal party. And none of them paid any attention to the flight attendants’ announcements.

  10. I guess when its time to go, you gotta go!!! This was in the papers last year involving a major airline. A guy from Malaysia insists he has a running stomach and needs to go during landing. A scuffle ensues as he is quickly led back to his seat and handcuffed. After pleading with the flight attendants and the marshal to be let to use the bathroom, he finally relieves himself on the seat making such a mess..to the dismay and protests from other passengers. By now he has this smug look of i told you so…and a stench so bad that passengers were tripping over themselves to disembark …the plane emptied in record time.

    But what followed was most bizzare. A local judge found the guy guilty of acting in a manner likely to endanger the lives of other passengers…despite evidence on the contrary having been explicitly and odourly expressed. As they say, the law is really an ar*e!!!

  11. Hahahaha! I was just on a plane last night, and wondered “what would happen if you were on the toilet during take off?” – I guess the answer is in this article!

    I’m always TERRIFIED during take off too. My palms get all sweaty and I’ll jump and jolt at every little bump until the fasten seat belt sign is switched off. If the plane has an entertainment system, I’m fine – I’ll just turn a movie on. Yesterday’s flight – Ryanair – no such luck of course. Instead, all I had in front of me was the “what to do in an emergency” leaflet GLUED TO THE SEAT IN FRONT OF ME (not even a nice laminate in the pouch in front of me…there was no pouch. Cheap ass plane).

    Having nothing to look at but a series of “this is what to do if the plane starts to go down” diagrams that are directly in front of you for three hours isn’t the best thing for a nervous flyer to have to look at…

    1. And Ryan Air is the plane that most makes you believe they will go down. I can’t stand that airline, they are so dodgy!! I think at one stage they were talking of charging people to use the toilet!!

      As soon as I get on the plane I hide the safety card, as I don’t want to look at it, I would be freaked having glued like that in front of my face.

  12. my tip would be to never catastrophise about what might happen when flying! It’s always best to focus on the positive outcomes of the flight i.e. the destination & vacation ahead!!! 😉

  13. I don’t even like being in the toilet when it is stable and not at any sort of angle. I also get nervous when people wander about even during flight. Somehow i feel more secure when I am belted in and it bothers me somehow to see others not feel like that.

    Even on the bigger airlines, people walk around during turbulence when the seatbelt sign is on and the flight attendents are strapped in.

    I’m with Kevin. As much as I dislike flight in general, I am getting better at take off and landing. As I know it only lasts X minutes. The random bumps and drops during flight still freak me out a lot.

  14. Wow, what a trooper! I hate going to the toilet on the plane, it’s so small and claustrophobic and takes so much effort! But yes, like the lady’s expression said – when you gotta go, you gotta go…

  15. I know that this was posted a while ago but I have just come across it and thought I had to comment. I went to Paris from London earlier this year and before the flight my dad had a huge pint of beer and didn’t go to the toilet before we boarded the plane. As the safety announcements were being done he decides he REALLY needs the toilet so asks the steward if he is allowed. The steward said it was too late and that we would e taking off within a few minutes. But then the captain announced that we would be taking off in 10 minutes so my dad was made a special exception and allowed to go quickly. However, not even 30 seconds had passed from my dad going to the toilet that we suddenly hear the roar of the engines..and the plane started speeding down the runway. I hate flying myself an was worried anyway at this point and this just about tipped the iceberg. I was crying and my little sister was also panicking. We sounded a right state! My dad was finally allowed out of the toilet when we were safely in the air, he was locked in by the air steward while we were taking off. It was possibly the funniest but scariest flight exp I’ve ever had.

    1. How hilarious!!! I’m so excited to hear of another story like this!1 Your dad must have been terrified. What a cool story to tell around the campfire at night. Thanks so much for sharing, gave me a little giggle.

  16. Taking off is the worst part of all. Of all in all life. I’ve noticed what helps me – just look for person who’s more terrified than yourself and concentrate on him/her. Human nature is caring and protecting. Watching that petrified person, you forget about your own fears thinking how to calm comfort him/her down (can’t do it physically if he’s next row, but nurturing feeling towards him will fade your own anxiety away)

  17. Though I’m not sure it works for everyone, but it has been suggested by some that if you keep your stomach and leg muscles a bit tight at the time of take off, you can avoid the sinking stomach feeling, if that’s what bothers you. I read somewhere that fighter pilots use the technique often. Hope you find it helpful! 😉 It’s good to know that one is not alone in recognizing the discomforts of flying. 🙂

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