Window Shades UP or DOWN?

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marki

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Well on a flight lasting more than 15 minutes. Looking out of the window at clouds isn't going to do it for me. Down, with a glass of wine and the IFE showing a good movie.

You can still wear sunnies :D
 

Tassie

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I am not an infrequent traveller but always look at the view when below the clouds - it is one of the things I love about flying

On one LHR-BKK BA flight, the FAs were merciless (and quite rude) in insisting that everyone had their shades down so people could sleep. That meant they didn't allow them up until "breakfast" was served - which was 2pm BKK time. Ridiculous if you were supposed to sleep until then. As someone said, much better to adjust to time at destination.

Next time I flew BA from LHR to Asia, I got an email from BA saying it was my choice as to whether the shade was up or down, but they weren't as rigid on that flight so I didn't need to use it.
 

Mike Fewster

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Up, every time.

[ I just loathe flying when I can't see out. Watching the world or even the ocean is one of the great joys of flying. Dawns and sunsets and clouds are just superb. Those who want to snooze can wear masks if shutters are open. If the blinds are closed, there is no alternative for those who want them open. Maybe we need sidescreens on the sides of tv for daylight glare, but I have never found this a problem any way. Besides, I much prefer to take my own IFE on a tablet rather than rely on the hit or missing of programs and reliability of IFE.
 
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I always try to get the window seat... and have the wonderful opportunity to watch the world go by outside. When I do have the window seat I feel an overwhelming obligation to look out the window and not waste it. On those occasions when I've been stuck in a middle or aisle seat, I feel really resentful of those who waste the window, watching the IFE or reading or talking, while I'm stuck in the guts of the plane craning my neck to see the fleeting glimpses of scenery around the inert heads and corpulent frames of those who are indifferent to the spectacle passing by (not referring to any of the previous posters here, of course).

I enjoy flying over Hawaii - usually at night on the way to YVR or LAX, so I have to check out the window constantly (regularly referring to the moving map display), in case I miss it (at least I don't annoy the light sensitive with the open shade at night).

I especially enjoy flying over coastlines, watching boats, villages, lights... whatever's on offer (Can't see any of that with the window shade down).

Cities and towns are also worth a look - day or night. I really love flying over sand dunes when passing over western Qld, SA, NT and WA on the way to Europe or Asia. I work in these areas and it looks so much better from the air.

I love flying over mountains - especially over snow-covered mountains - because it means I'll be skiing soon (I'd also miss this with the shade down). I was very sad when we were flying back from Europe a few years back and was made to close the shade when flying over the Himalayas. Apparently some other people wanted to sleep. I tried to hold the blanket up to stop too much light leaking in, but that wasn't good enough for the little Hitler flight attendant.

I always like to peer out the window (day or night) when the plane starts to rock and roll - so I know whether to worry about going through clouds and need to hold onto the armrests to keep the plane up.... or whether it's just Clear Air Turbulence, so it's nothing to worry about and no need to hold on.

IFE rarely can compete with the view.... but of course, if there's nothing at all to see out the window (which is pretty rare), or if I'm sleeping comfortably in J, I'll have the shade down... I'm not an idiot. Well maybe just a little, as it will be lifted regularly to see if I'm missing anything.

Apologies in advance if my open shade bothers you.
 

daveozsydney

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I am one of those people. As soon as I get to my seat I will adjust my watch to the destination time and that is what I will eat, sleep and drink too. it works for me but I know some cant seem to do it

Same here - for me if for example I do Aus-SIN-Europe I like to adjust to the Europe time zone from the moment I step on the plane, so if the Aus-SIN is a later afternoon flight I want to stay awake on it (when it's Europe daytime), enjoy the IFE and nice food and then sleep (try to) on the Sin-Europe flight towards the end of the journey as I will be tired by then and then wake up for arrival in Europe adjusted to the different time zone. On arrival I stay up all day (a few coffees) and then can rest well on the first night rather than arriving in daytime, sleeping and then being awake at night.
Works well for me.

If I'm just flying to Asia as my final destination and on a daytime flight, I don't want the blinds down because I want to stay on the time zone and not arrive in say Singapore and have slept all day and then not be able to sleep at night.
Generally if you want darkness for sleep you can use the eye shades and if for the IFE just have less natural light -shade half down. In F at least you can close the doors on the Suites if you have the blinds down. I try to be considerate to others in the cabin and often have the blind half down.

I think it's often to benefit the FAs to have blinds fully down as then people go to sleep and less interaction required (and they can shuffle off the the crew rest area as they've often been out partying on their away trips)
 

Mike Fewster

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Shades down is rude and inconsiderate of others. Those who want dimmer light have alternatives. They can wear masks if they want to sleep. They can take their own IFE on tablets. This is usually a good idea anyway as you get the programs you want and it is much more reliable than IFE which is far too often faulty. Those who want shades open have no alternatives if the shades are down. Yes, masks and Tablets may be a little less than perfect, but they are reasonable options whereas shades down inflicts that on everyone.
 

Pushka

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Having been 'blinded' by sunshine streaming in by an open blind for some time I think in some situations keeping them up is also inconsiderate. I didnt want to sleep - just not have to have sunshine beaming in. And I hate sleep masks anyway.
 

Mike Fewster

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Having been 'blinded' by sunshine streaming in by an open blind for some time I think in some situations keeping them up is also inconsiderate. I didn't want to sleep - just not have to have sunshine beaming in. And I hate sleep masks anyway.
I agree that there is no perfect fits everyone solution (at the moment) and I agree that direct sunshine may be an issue that can be dealt with by half lowering a shade. I prefer not to wear a sleep mask as well, but they are an option. Those who insist on shades down allow no options for others. In my book therefore, shades up is the preferred position that can give the most comfort to the most travellers.
 

amp-qld

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As well as being a nervous traveller, my wife is claustrophobic but loves travelling so puts up with flying (with a little relaxant help). However, it does mean that she hates having the blinds down on daytime flights. We always try to get a window seat for her but selecting seats is so expensive on some airlines that it doesn't always happen. Probably the worst was when we got a last minute upgrade on Air Asia and were placed in central seats in Business. The crew asked people to lower their blinds even though it was daytime. In the end, my wife asked the nearest person in a window seat to partially lift the blind and they did. Another aspect to all this is circadian rhythms. My understanding is that it's best to get daylight/night as close as possible to your destination as soon as possible. Blinds down on daylight flights rarely helps that but crews seem more interested in keeping passengers pacified.
 

Mike Fewster

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As well as being a nervous traveller, my wife is claustrophobic but loves travelling so puts up with flying (with a little relaxant help). However, it does mean that she hates having the blinds down on daytime flights. We always try to get a window seat for her but selecting seats is so expensive on some airlines that it doesn't always happen. Probably the worst was when we got a last minute upgrade on Air Asia and were placed in central seats in Business. The crew asked people to lower their blinds even though it was daytime. In the end, my wife asked the nearest person in a window seat to partially lift the blind and they did. Another aspect to all this is circadian rhythms. My understanding is that it's best to get daylight/night as close as possible to your destination as soon as possible. Blinds down on daylight flights rarely helps that but crews seem more interested in keeping passengers pacified.
I understand. Again, it seems straightforward to me. When travelling, you know in advance the hours you will be flying and you can come prepared if you want a dimmer plane and you will be flying in daylight. Those who want light have no options. I think shades down is being pushed by airlines who would prefer customers to be asleep for as long as possible to cut down services.
 

MEL_Traveller

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Having been 'blinded' by sunshine streaming in by an open blind for some time I think in some situations keeping them up is also inconsiderate. I didnt want to sleep - just not have to have sunshine beaming in. And I hate sleep masks anyway.

It's not just other passengers being 'blinded' - I can't even look out the window for more than a minute or two before I become blinded! So i don't know how anyone else does? Maybe they could wear sunnies... but if you need to wear sunnies, doesn't that at least spark some sort of consideration for what other passengers might be experiencing?

I'm not sure there are reasonable alternatives... tablets are difficult to manage, can get damaged or left behind, and the sound and screen size is often not the same as aircraft screens. Eye-masks are ok, but they don't suit everyone.

I'm sure I mentioned this ridiculous example previously... on a day flight with bright sun streaming in, the whole cabin except two people in the H/K seats had their shades down. The people in the H/K seats were having difficulty watching their own IFE so were holding up the safety briefing card to shade their screens. And then swapping the hand holding said card as their hand/arm got tired. Zero thought processing going on in their brains.
 

11sjw

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I'm sure I mentioned this ridiculous example previously... on a day flight with bright sun streaming in, the whole cabin except two people in the H/K seats had their shades down. The people in the H/K seats were having difficulty watching their own IFE so were holding up the safety briefing card to shade their screens. And then swapping the hand holding said card as their hand/arm got tired. Zero thought processing going on in their brains.

Having suffered migraines (both myself and my wife) generated by such window residents I've been known to politely ask for a shade to come down.
 
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Musongman

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I thought regulations were, shades up for take-off and landings. Aside from that it's a free-for-all, but used to be that crew would ask for them to be down on overnight flights to avoid the early morning light, now, annoyingly crew rarely do that!
I'm an aisle seat, centre section type myself and don't like to be jammed against the side of the hull, even in J never a window seat! :)
 

FirstClass

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Although I've never used IFE in my life (not a TV person), most pax seem to do so and therefore presumably have a preference for shades down. If one wishes to read, there are usually a bunch of lights available for the purpose. Sleep is assisted by eyeshades, earplugs and good ol' zolpidem, irrespective of shade position. Although once an adherent of sleeping per destination time-zone, I now find drug-induced sleep throughout the entirety of any longhaul flight produces superior results. If one prefers aisle seats for ready access to head then what's out the window is largely irrelevant anyway. Aside from the occasional necessity for fire etc to be visible from within and without, dunno why they bother with windows (or shades) anyway. Claustrophobes and aerial sightseers might be satisfied with an IFE channel depicting the great outdoors.
Speaking of sleeping on aeroplanes, I do wish Airbus would alter the design of their cabin soles, stiffen them so that the footfall of FA's doesn't reverberate through the seat structure and into one's skull. In making this criticism, I should disclose my intense dislike of almost every system aboard the European products.
 

Pushka

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When is it daytime on an International flight? On our 9.35 am flight back from Dubai the shades were auto down about 2 hours into the 13 hour flight. Many slept. Which makes sense given we arrived into Sydney at 6.00am.
 

marki

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Shades down is rude and inconsiderate of others. Those who want dimmer light have alternatives. They can wear masks if they want to sleep. They can take their own IFE on tablets. This is usually a good idea anyway as you get the programs you want and it is much more reliable than IFE which is far too often faulty. Those who want shades open have no alternatives if the shades are down. Yes, masks and Tablets may be a little less than perfect, but they are reasonable options whereas shades down inflicts that on everyone.

The IFE sometimes have movies yet unavailable via official channels ie cannot yet be bought say on i.e. iTunes store. But I do agree the IFE are sometimes very faulty and poor quality including small screen realestate. I wonder how they can afford to carry the heavy systems onboard... weighing so much! in Fuel costs. The First class remotes are all metal on QF. The in chair (side armrest) screens weigh a tonne). I do think the QF iPad's are a much better idea, although not without fault.
But with iPad's the window shades are not as much of an issue as the screens can be adjusted and tilted easily or a blanket can be used to cover the screen and the avoid the reflections.
 
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hhewison

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It should be up to the person next to the window. Allowing due consideration for people close to them. I like to look out the window, match the in flight info with what I can see below. Why else would I ask for a window seat? I've had 2 run ins with flight attendants demanding I close the shade. One was on a nearly empty Thai airlines flight. The only logic I have read for this is that if the cabin is dark people will sleep and not bother the staff. I paid to be 30,000' in the air, I go to the airport early so I can get a window seat. And someone doesn't want me to look out the window because they will have to work to service the customers.
 

Muzzaflyer

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Why would you book yourself a window seat if you want the shades down. For me if i book a window it is because i am flying to a new area and want to see out of the plane. If you have a problem with you eyes, and i feel for anyone that does, have your glasses maker make a special pair of glasses to remove the glare.
They put windows in things so you can see out. As far as i am concerned the windows can't be big enough
 

MEL_Traveller

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Why else would I ask for a window seat? I've had 2 run ins with flight attendants demanding I close the shade. One was on a nearly empty Thai airlines flight. The only logic I have read for this is that if the cabin is dark people will sleep and not bother the staff. I paid to be 30,000' in the air, I go to the airport early so I can get a window seat. And someone doesn't want me to look out the window because they will have to work to service the customers.

You could book a window seat so that you could look out during taxi, take-off and landing? That's what I do. Not primarily for the view during flight (although there are exceptions... like flying over the grand canyon, or paris at night time).

The reason why they ask shades down, as discussed above, is not so the crew can relax - far from that. Most crew are happy to have something to do when they're rostered on to work (ie not sleeping on one of their rest breaks). It's so people can watch IFE, or snooze if they want to.

Why would you book yourself a window seat if you want the shades down.

Some people (like me) book a window seat specifically to lower the shades... because some people just don't think about how their actions affect others (as I outlined in my example above). So I'll take a window seat even though it is of no use to me (other than having a peek at what's happening at the during taxi, and perhaps the view during takeoff and landing).
 
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