An experience a lot of people have, but few actually understand. This blog post will take you through what the “Mile High Club” is, how it’s done, and why some people are willing to risk their lives for it.
Although typically associated with air travel, the Mile High Club can be achieved on any type of transportation that can fly or travel at high altitudes. It also occurs more frequently on commercial aircraft than on private planes. A portion of the reason for this is self-selection: since there is a stigma to cabin crew (or flight attendants) engaging in such activities, many passengers will simply choose not to do it. Another factor is the literal altitude: the higher up you go, the less chance you’ll encounter another person who could surprise you and ruin your human mile.
The Mile High Club occurs in all environments: at cruising altitude (9,000 feet and above), above 10,000 feet, or even at high altitudes when air density decreases due to lower temperatures or altitude changes. One common misconception about the Mile High Club is that it exists only in airplane bathrooms, which is false. This misconception has most likely come from instances involving airline crew members getting caught, whereas in fact it happens on any mode of transportation.
It’s very rare to hear about the Mile High Club occurring on commercial buses or trains, but it can happen. Many transit vehicles are able to fly or fly at high altitude, but there are few that can reach cruise-altitude (around 10,000 feet) without supplemental power supplies due to the air density decreasing with altitude. Even if they could operate at cruising altitude, passengers would not be able to achieve true Mile High Club status, since the air is not thin enough to make out another person behind you. This is because air density decreases with higher altitudes. But if you’re willing to go to the bathroom, you can achieve it on any mode of transportation.
There are other factors that help or hinder people from achieving the Mile High Club. Height, for instance, makes it easier for people to see over the seats in front of them and see behind them. This is especially true with women, who typically have a shorter stature than most men (and most airline seats decrease legroom for women). If they were seated near an aisle seat, they could potentially lean forward and use their arms to brace themselves against the person sitting next to them.
Another factor that can be of importance is whether or not the seatbelt buckle comes up over the person’s shoulder, which moves the belt out of sight between their legs. If it doesn’t, it can unintentionally give the person more privacy than they otherwise would have. A seatbelt will also prevent someone from standing up and leaning forward to get a better look at who’s behind them. But if you’re using the seatbelt for an important safety reason (like putting on your seat belt when landing), this could be a problem.
If you’re going to achieve the Mile High Club, it’s best to do so when there are no other passengers around, as this reduces or eliminates potential bystanders from distracting you. If you are caught, then you must remain calm and try to get out of it. The worst thing to do is panic, because it’s very likely that the cabin crew will notice your anxiety.
The same goes for the person beside you: keep calm and act natural. If they are scared or trying to hide, then the cabin crew has a higher chance of seeing them based on the reflection of light coming from their eyes, which changes color when you’re afraid.
Items such as blankets and pillows can help to cover the person, but be aware of how it looks to others. Airplane blankets are usually small, so it could look like you’re trying to hide something. Also, people nearby may be able to see your feet moving or hear rustling noises if they’re not careful.
Many of the techniques that are used to achieve the Mile High Club involve one person leaning forward against another person’s back. This is why taller people have an advantage over shorter ones, because they can place their arms on top of the seat in front of them and still reach behind them with their head.