How do you deal with seat neighbors while traveling?

There is no doubt that every step of the journey has a rich story and experience since the decision was taken to go to another place, regardless of the reasons for the trip and its motives, and how many stories emerge from attempts to talk to the neighbors of the seat next to us during the trip, especially when we travel alone, or With an odd group, the last of its members was lucky to sit down with a stranger from family members or a group of friends and acquaintances.

Hence, it is important to pay attention to the fact that sitting next to the other person does not cause a disturbing future memory of you as an insensitive or disrespectful being.

Wait before you start talking

The Colombian Nobel Prize-winning novelist tells one of his real-life travel experiences through the lines of one of his articles, saying that by chance the neighbor of his seat on the plane made a girl with delicate features. She swallowed two small pills, then wrapped herself in her blanket and fell into a deep sleep that lasted throughout the long hours of the journey! Which he missed the opportunity to intrude on her, even with one question. Like that girl, there are a large number of travelers who do not like talking with strangers at all, and some of them accept the conversation with limits, and some of them do not believe hearing the word “hello” until they start talking that has no end except the end of the journey, no matter how long it takes!

To avoid feeling embarrassed in front of the sharp reactions that may occur when we do not choose the appropriate way to start the conversation; We offer you some tips that may help to complete the trip in peace without feeling disturbed by your presence creeping into your neighbour:

1- Do not rush attempts to start talking from the first moment. Such haste may cause a bad impression on you.

2- Some people give very clear signals that they do not want to talk to strangers, such as putting music headphones in their ears, watching movies on CDs, or putting blinds on their eyes while waiting for sleep…etc. When you notice such signs, know that your every attempt to talk to him is for him a real attempt to annoy him, even if you don’t realize that.

3- There are those whose many preoccupations and professional commitments do not allow them to leave them in a solution or gossip with those who come and go, so you see them really busy with paper reports or following up on important work through their laptop computer. When you see that leave them to work in peace, find for yourself something to occupy yourself with.

4- If your mother tongue differs from the language of the neighbor of the seat, and you do not master his second language (such as English) with a strong proficiency that enables you to conduct a healthy conversation, do not try to be astute and enter it right and left with crosswords that do not memorize other than that language, supported by the movements of your hands, face and mouth Trying to make him understand what you are forcibly saying even though what you are saying is really unnecessary! I know that in this way you are making an ugly impression about yourself, your way of upbringing, your society, your country, and perhaps the entire Arab nation.

5- Don’t start your attempts to talk with a question. First begin with a short salutation accompanied by a soft, unobtrusive smile, and then proceed with a general comment; About weather conditions for example. If you notice that your neighbor is ready to talk to you, go ahead, but if you notice an obvious coldness; Stop immediately and don’t try to get the ball back.

6- Always choose to talk about general topics and issues, and stay away from personal questions or topics of any kind, lest you be prey to the mistrust of the other party. The best divergent conversation you can have is the country or city you are going to together; Its atmosphere, its inhabitants, its tourist attractions, its hotels…etc. And because the hadith is fraught with confusion, this hadith will lead you to comparisons and other general, funny and interesting conversations without planning.

7- There is another type of traveler who likes to talk about his private affairs, his personal concerns and the details of his professional and family life without asking him about it, and some of them find treasure in you as a stranger who can share his concerns with him and give him advice from afar without seeing him in the future. Try to be a friendly and attentive person with these people, and then make sure to keep people’s secrets.

8- Avoid talking about beliefs, religions, or politics anywhere, because such conversations may lead to disagreements with unwelcome consequences. Keep your personal information in these areas to yourself, and if you want to do more, you should do individual research or ask specialists or your old friends, away from implicating travel companions and annoying strangers with such issues.

9- Some people find strangers in travel neighbors a great prey to promote their own ideas or commercial products. Don’t be one of them. Distributing religious and advocacy publications, and marketing the company’s product for the purpose of acquiring a customer, is not the place of a means of travel such as an airplane or bus. This method will lose you a lot of respect for your neighbor, and he will get rid of the publications you gave him and your business card as soon as you leave, and if he had a prior intention of dealing with the party you work with, he will leave it completely because of you. But there is no objection to talking briefly about the nature of your work in these areas if you are asked about them, and if you notice interest from the other party and a clear desire to hear more, then go ahead, otherwise not.

10- Do not try to embarrass your neighbor by asking for his phone number or means of communication with him in order to use it to help you on your journey, unless he takes the initiative to offer his assistance to you.

11- Avoid taking any unconscious drugs or drinks that make you unable to control your actions, or delirium with words and sounds that should not be issued by normal people at least 24 hours before the flight.


In conclusion, accept our best wishes for a comfortable and enjoyable trip, and conversations that combine useful information and an appetizing joke with the neighbors of your trip.