THE BLOG
10/01/2014 11:11 am ET Updated Dec 01, 2014

The 30 Ultimate Rules of Air Travel

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Check in early. Stay hydrated. Bring hand sanitizer. Consolidate credit card and hotel points. Thanks, Condé Nast or USA Today; should I be taking notes? The only thing missing are the words "life hack."

Simply put, there's nothing glamorous or exciting about commercial air travel, especially domestically in the U.S. Although sitting between a Lager Lout and a ginger Scouse on an EasyJet flight from Luton Airport to Barcelona is hardly any better -- except that you end up in Barcelona, instead of in Cleveland.

So I thought I'd share with you the accumulated wisdom of my years spent traversing the globe -- a definitive guide to make air travel palatable for you and those around you:

1. Don't fly an airline where your checked bags might cost more than your seat.

2. No First Class selfies.

3. Only use Frequent Flyer miles for upgrades or international flights. Using 60,000 miles to get to Philly is like throwing a bag of kittens in a river.

4. If they have Wi-Fi, don't use it. You'll end up doing exactly what you do at your desk. Watch a movie. Read a book. Tune out and shut off.

5. If you have checked baggage, when you land, stop at a bar and have a drink on your way to baggage claim.

6. Unless you are flying First Class international, never eat the food, period.

7. If the flight is less than four hours and you have to relieve your bowels, then you are an idiot.

8. If you get stuck with a middle seat, take the next flight.

9. If you are afraid of flying, listen to Britney Spears on takeoff. You'll be fine; no one is destined to die like that.

10. Pre-gaming with Bloody Marys sounds awesome, but the sodium is a killer at high altitude.

11. Be nice to the flight attendant; she got drunk and passed out at the Midway Hotel in Newark last night.

12. Take advantage of the #1 rule of air travel: no matter what time it is, it's always acceptable to drink.

13: Always keep your seat belt buckled. Unless you're flying Cathay Pacific, you probably don't want the flight attendant's hands in your lap when you're passed out before landing.

14. I already have enough friends, don't f*cking talk to me. And I don't want your business card either.

15. Unless it's to a remote island, the word "Connection" should not appear on your itinerary.

16. Have the flight attendant fill up the water glass with wine too, or just ask her for two glasses. You'll be doing her a favor.

17. Never drive yourself to the airport when your flight is over two hours. Odds are, you'll be getting off the return flight smashed.

18. When flying internationally, befriend one of the male flight attendants.
They know the best clubs and how to get drugs.

19. When you squeeze by me, don't give me "the ass" or "the crotch"; just don't get up. If you must, allow me time to move into the aisle to make way for you.

20. Louis Vuitton in Economy class. No matter how you look at it, your priorities are screwed up.

21. The easiest way to figure out if a girl is marriage material is if she brings a hair dryer in her suitcase. You know she's never seen the inside of a Four Seasons.

22. Don't ever Facebook check-in at a lounge. Willy Loman would get lounge access today.

23. Sorry HTO, ACK, and MVY, if it's got propellers, it doesn't count as a private plane.

24. The Mile High Club has become pedestrian and YouPorn-ish, not to mention disgusting.
I'll wait until I'm next to Christine Teigen on the Virgin Galactic.

25. Spare change should never be the reason for holding up the security line.

26. If you bring a favorite pillow from home with you, and sit next to me, I'm going to ask you about your favorite episode of 16 and Pregnant.

27. The exit row is First Class for poor people.

28. No one knows this, but if you wear dark, pleated, and cuffed slacks with a golf shirt, you drink for free. (There can be no other explanation for this airport fashion phenomenon.)

29. Don't ask me to switch seats with you, unless you are offering me a better seat.

30. Don't leave home without Ciprofloxacin... and Ambien, Xanax, and Klonopin.

John LeFevre is the creator of the @GSElevator Twitter feed and the author of the soon-to-be-released Straight To Hell: True Tales of Deviance, Debauchery, and Billion-Dollar Deals.