How To Charm The Pants Off Your Next Airplane Seatmate

February 28, 2013  |  
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There’s a fine line between being the pleasant surprise of a charming, witty, attractive seatmate, and the person who is just talking too much. But you just sat next to someone you’re envisioning yourself on Indie-movie type dates with once that bird hits the runway and you don’t know how to walk that line. Let us give you a few tips.

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Fake a fear of flying

Maybe this fear is real for you in which case, even better. When the plane starts to rumble and pick up speed on the runway, close your eyes and squeeze your seatmate’s hand as the plane is taking off. Do it impulsively, as if you couldn’t help it! He’ll find it cute, and it’s something you two can laugh about after. Plus it’s already set up a sort of protective position for your seatmate—a position guys love to be in.


Wait until the end to ask for the date

Stop right there! Once you’ve asked for the date, the pressure is on. If the remaining hours of the flight are not somehow wonderful, you’ll lose excitement about the date. But flights are naturally un-wonderful. You can’t possibly make great conversation for 5 straight hours. But once you’ve asked for the date, sitting in silence will feel awkward.


Don’t be the first to start “real” conversation

Aside from the simple comments we’re going to cover in this list to get someone’s initial attention, do not be the first one to pull up the seat divider, turn your body towards your seatmate and say, “So tell me about yourself.” Doing this will only make your seatmate think, “Great. A chatty Kathy who won’t give me a moment’s rest on this flight.” But making a few passing comments, and then delving back into your own book or movie will tease your seatmate, having him wonder, “What? She doesn’t really want to talk to me?” And he’ll accept that challenge, wanting to see if he can interest you!

Yuri Arcurs/

Be super prepared

If you have any item that always makes people say, “Wow. I wish I’d thought of bringing that on the plane!” bring it. Men find practicality and forward thinking very attractive. And it’s a great conversation starter.



Comment on his book/movie

If you’re having trouble breaking the ice, it’s perfectly normal to comment on someone’s form of entertainment. After all, they’re sitting mere inches away from you.


Joke with the flight attendants

There’s nothing more attractive than a woman who makes the best of not-so-fun situations, and who tries to make it better for others, too! And many men have said they pay attention to how their dates treat those in the service industry, turned off by women with an entitled mentality. So show your seatmate you’re no princess and get friendly with the flight staff.


Don’t over share

There’s something about being stuck in a confined space thousands of feet above the air that makes it seem okay to tell someone every deep secret of your life. But would you be telling him that on a regular first date? No? Then keep it to yourself or you two may feel too close for comfort (and for that date!) when the plane lands.


Ask where he’s from

There’s nothing more disappointing than making a great connection with someone only to find out they live on the other side of the country. And the odds of that are high when you’re on a plane! Ask from the beginning where your cute seatmate is from. If he’s from the same place as you, keep flirting! If he’s from far away, avoid the temptation to flirt and chat the whole time. You’ll only be sad when the flight’s over.

Ask him for destination suggestions

If you’re both visiting the same place, a great way to start conversation is to ask your seatmate his suggestions of what to do in that place, or what his plans are, or what he’s heard is entertaining. This is also a great way to see if you have the same taste in activities.


Take breaks

If you talk the guy’s ear off the entire flight you may come off as desperate. But if you’re able to break away occasionally to get back into your book or movie, this shows (on a small scale) that you’re okay with doing your own thing and don’t need to be entertained by a man all of the time. Your seatmate will think about how that translates in the big picture.


Offer to get him something

Get up to get water from the back of the plane, and ask your seatmate if he wants anything. Better yet don’t ask him, and just come back with two bags of pretzels/bottles of water/cookies. He’ll think it’s adorable that you help strangers out.


Get work done

Pop open that laptop and get to work. Men love driven women. Your seatmate will be attracted to the fact that you’re so dedicated to your work, you’re not even slacking off on a plane. Plus it opens the opportunity for him to ask what you do, and for you to talk about your passions and interests.

Say you don’t like to drink alone

Order a cocktail and ask your seatmate if you can get him one, saying, “I don’t like to drink alone.” You know how women feel obligated to talk to men after they buy them drinks? The reverse is true too, and now you’ve earned yourself some chatting time.


Bring “man food” with you

Forget airplane food. Pick up a burger and fries in the airport, or a steak sandwich. Pick up food that a man will be impressed by, or jealous of. No man is shy to say, “That looks really good.” Now you’ve started a conversation and impressed him with the fact that you’re not another salad/whole-wheat-wrap eating chick.

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