Do you talk to the person next to you on a plane? Apparently, one in every 50 people meet their partner this way

2019-08-01 12:58
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You share a small, intimate space, sometimes for up to 10 hours at a time with your fellow passengers. Yet you don't speak. You don't even make eye contact. Perhaps the only words you'll share the entire flight is: "Do you mind getting up, I need to pee?"

A recent HSBC survey found that 1 in 50 people meet their partner in-flight. Furthermore, the study found that an average of two couples meet on a flight. That's pretty significant.

Last year, a similar study found that between 14-16% of people make a meaningful connection, like a new friendship or a business link, on most flights. 

But there is a kicker to these findings: You need to actually talk to the person next to you to make this connection. Wha-wha-whaaaaaa.

Whether across the aisle or sitting directly next to you, talking to your co-passengers might not be such a bad idea after all, that is if you're looking to network or if you're currently searching for love. 

We asked you on Twitter whether you engage in a chat or some conversation on a plane. Here's what you said: 

So, the biggest group of respondents said they rarely or never talk to the person sitting next to them. Can you relate? I certainly can. 

READ: Can I ask for alcohol during breakfast on a flight?

But should we reconsider?

My friend and I once heard the statistic that an average of 20% of people meet the love of their life on a plane. So, subsequently, we religiously message each other after a flight, sharing with each other who sat next to us.

Lets just say it's almost-always a granny. 

Selective focus shot in an airplane

(PHOTO: iStock)

However, many people I know have much, much better stories. One friend sat next to, perhaps the only, blonde Brazilian doctor in existence on a flight to Rio. Gorgeous and charming, they flirted the whole flight there, and ended up seeing the city together. Even meeting his parents in the process! 

Similarly, Travel and Leisure reports that a cancelled flight from Azores to Lisbon led to one woman finding her husband on the next scheduled flight. So it does happen!

READ: This middle-seat fix could see you dangerously close to your co-passenger's armpit

Truth is, you can meet someone anywhere. On Tinder, at the office, in the air, or even at the gym. It's your prerogative to detach and become as anti-social as you want to be on a long-haul or quick flight to Jozi - because it's your time to do with what you want.

We tend to be allergic to social interaction on public transport, says Stuff, and planes journeys fall under this for sure. 

It's all up to you and how you want to spend your time during the flight, as talking the person next to you might lead to something wonderful, or alternatively, a 10-hours long conversation about cats.

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