Judging by how viral a Tik Tok video went for calling out people for placing their coat in the overhead bin of an aircraft, it appears the issue of whether to keep your coats with you or place them above you is quite controversial.
Put Your Coat In The Aircraft Overhead Bin? Patience…
A popular “influencer” called out a pair of passengers for placing their coasts in the overhead bins. Is it always rude to do so?
My answer is very simple: wait until the overhead bins have been filled with larger bags, then place your coasts around them. Overhead storage space is intended for larger items for a simple reason: large bags cannot be place under your seat but coats can.
I think we can all remember a time when we had to board late and check our bag at the gate or jet bridge. Wouldn’t it have been nice if there wasn’t a need for that because selfish travelers did not needlessly fill overhead bin space with their coats or small bags?
But what about when you are only traveling with a coat and have no bag? Should you be entitled to place your coat in the overhead bin in lieu of a bag?
I would say the answer is the same as above. In all but the oldest of overhead lockers, once the bags are in there is room around them for coats.
So again, first larger bags, then smaller bags, then coats around them. The only exception is if you are traveling in a bulkhead or emergency exit row, where the storage of personal items at your feet may be prohibited.
It is true that in Europe, many carriers have coat hooks on each seat, which are intended (of course) for your coats. The problem is that if you hook a winter jacket onto it, you legroom is even more constrained and you cannot open the tray table. That means you have to rest it in your lap or on the floor when you open the tray table, which make is much easier to spill on it.
Thus, by all means put your coat up…just be patient and put it up once everyone has had a chance to store your bag.
I understand that in the days of tight legroom and thin seats in economy class, you really don’t want to deal with bulky coats invading what little space you have. However, since an aircraft cabin is shared space, proper etiquette dictates placing coats in overhead bins only around larger bags or when boarding is complete. Anything else strikes me as rude.
image: @HillnPoo / TikTok