August 12, 2022

Rich Eisen from the NFL Network spent some time on his show this week talking about airplane etiquette, and he’s very wrong and selfish, and kind of a jerk.

He claims that when he talks about airplane travel it “trends worldwide,” and I can see why, because he’s that far off base. His previously claim was that the person in the middle seat doesn’t get both armrests, but rather that the person who gets there first gets both armrests.

Rich Eisen thinks you should put as much as you want in the overhead bin

The topic started when George Kittle, the tight end for the San Francisco 49ers, Tweeted a question about airplane etiquette. He stated that the person next to him in the exit row put two bags in the overhead bin, and asked for Twitter’s thoughts on this.

Eisen has very strong feelings about this, which is that you should put as much as you want in the overhead bin:

“Answer? Absolutely. Free for all. I got on the plane first exactly for that reason. Exactly for that reason.”

There’s a lot of discussion that revolves around how you can’t put anything under the seat in front of you in the exit row. In the United States this is generally not true, as most exit row seats do allow you to place things underneath the seat in front.

Eisen continues:

“You snooze, you lose. Get on the plane first. Period. End of story. The minute you can get on the plane, get on the plane.”

“We had a whole bunch of stuff, flights canceled, a couple of weeks ago. I flew in coach, which happens a lot, on my birthday. On my actual freaking birthday, all the way to the east coast. And guess what we did? We got on the first second we could, and we used every space we possibly could, because we could.”

In the next hour of the show after some people responded, Eisen says:

“I guess you’re supposed to only put one up there because I need to leave space for someone else, as if that person is really going to have your best interest in mind. Never.”

“Treat others how you want to be treated. I agree. I am fine with that if everyone signs a document going on the plane saying they are going to treat me the same way.”

You can watch the clip for yourself below.

What an awful approach to take in life

First of all, Eisen’s approach directly contradicts the policies of most airlines. You’re generally allowed one carry-on (which goes in the overhead bin) and one personal item (which goes underneath the seat in front of you). That’s the policy of virtually any airline that allows you to take two items onboard, and Eisen doesn’t seem to care that this is the rule.

More than that, though, I just can’t help but shake my head at his general approach toward things. Eisen doesn’t believe in doing the right things or following the rules, because he doesn’t think others care about him. But he would do the right thing if “everyone signs a document” saying they’re going to do the right thing.

Does this apply to other aspects of his life? Does he not pick up after his dog, because some other people don’t, so why should he? Does he not tip servers, because some people might not, so why should he? If he sees someone drop something, does he just keep it rather than returning it, because that’s what some people would do?

Also, this general attitude of “first on gets the overhead space” creates this ridiculous “gate lice” culture we have in the United States, where everyone crowds around the gate before boarding even starts, further complicating the process.

Bottom line

Rich Eisen claims that it’s okay to put as much as you want in airplane overhead bins because those who board first deserve it, and other people don’t care about you and would do the same thing. He’s completely wrong, but then again, this is also the guy who thinks that the person in the aisle gets both armrests if they get there before the person in the middle seat.

Where do you stand on Eisen’s overhead bin take?

(Tip of the hat to @EdwardDL702)

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