Boeing moves flight attendant call button

call buttonIt happens on many flights: you or a seatmate is groping blindly for the reading light or trying to plug earphones into to the armrest, accidentally hitting the flight attendant call button. This may happen several times per flight, causing flight attendants needless trips up and down the aisle to check on embarrassed passengers. It’s a pet peeve on the Gadling team, among both crew and other travelers.

Not anymore. The new Boeing 737 airplane, unveiled this week at the Paris Air Show, has finally corrected this design flaw. The call button has how been moved away and distinguished from the reading light button, to prevent future mistaken “dings.” Other new design elements for the most popular passenger jet include LED lighting and higher overhead bins to provide more headroom. Airberlin will be the first airline to receive a new 737. “On every flight somebody pushes the wrong button. It is an issue for flight attendants,” said pilot Tim Techt.

Photo courtesy Flickr user gurms

10 passengers we love to hate: Day 8 — passengers who misuse the FA call button

We’ve already reached the 8th day of our “10 passengers we love to hate” lineup. You’ve been able to read about passengers who misbehave around the baggage carousel, people who don’t know how an escalator works, and folks who annoy others with their Bluetooth headset.

This entry in our lineup is about passengers who think the attendant call button is a butler call bell. For some reason, almost every flight has one of these jackasses on board.

10 minutes into the flight, you’ll hear the first ding. Now, I’m not against using the call button for an emergency, or if you are in dire need of a drink to help take some medication, but the call button is not there to assist you in making a drink order before the attendant starts the drink service. It is also not there if you want to know how long it is till the plane lands.

Also, on many flights, there are always people who can’t see the difference between white and orange buttons, and keep pressing the call button thinking it’ll turn their little light on – unless you are severely color blind there is no valid reason to hit the wrong button.

So, unless you are unable to walk, just get out of your seat and walk up to the galley for whatever it is you need. It’ll help stretch your legs (and prevent DVT at the same time). Bottom line – the flight attendant is not your butler, and they have another 100 passengers to deal with.