Silent air travel a thing of the past

Updated 2018-01-27 12:26:00 China Daily

Noise complaints have arisen since China's commercial airlines entered the "mobile era", with some passengers' mobile use without earphones interrupting the quiet of airline cabins.

Most Chinese airlines - including China Eastern, Hainan and Xiamen airlines - have allowed passengers to use portable electronic devices on planes in flight mode since the aviation authority relaxed the restrictions on Jan 16.

Jessie J, a London-based singer, recently posted a video online showing a Chinese flight she was taking in which two Chinese passengers near her were watching videos on their mobiles without using earphones.

"So loud ... why ... I mean loud videos seem to be the vibe on this flight," she posted on foreign social media Instagram.

Her video was forwarded on Chinese social media, arousing fierce discussion online, with many sharing their annoying experiences with noisy fellow passengers.

Lan Yingtong, who flew from Xiamen to Shanghai on Xiamen Airlines on Wednesday, said she was disturbed very much by a man sitting next to her watching a loud variety show on his phone.

"Even though I was getting bothered, I tried to put up with it.... I didn't want to get into any conflicts," she said.

Li Lei, who often travels around the world for business, said, "I use my headphone to block the noise or do something else to distract myself instead of asking others to keep quiet."

"But speaking loudly or making noise on public transportation seems a universal phenomenon that people take for granted in China," he said.

Ouyang Jie, a professor who specializes in airport studies at Civil Aviation University of China, said making loud noises in public shows a lack of self-cultivation and etiquette.

But it is not possible for civil aviation authorities to release any regulation on people's behavior on public transportation, because people have different opinions of what constitutes "noise", he said.

Hainan Airlines flight attendant Wen Jiawei said if a passenger makes excessive noise that bothers others, attendants will try to discourage the behavior and if that does not work, they will change seats or provide earplugs for the passengers affected.

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