What was it like to travel on a flight that allowed smoking?

April 15, 2017 By Airline Ticket Centre

See the controls in this airplane seat armrest? Do you know what used to be embedded there before there was any kind of in-flight entertainment?

Behold the airline seat ashtray. Used to be absolutely standard, whether you were in the smoking section or not.

The smoking section, incidentally, was simply marked by a plaque on a seat back indicating that it started at such-and-such a row. There was no effort to divide the smokers physically from anybody else. In first class, if there were four rows, the back row would be the smoking section.

It was unspeakably vile. The moment they started the engines and began using the internal air system, the smell of stale cigarette smoke came all throughout the plane, because there were weeks or months of it in the air filters. And the filters were wholly inadequate to the task.

Air travel has gone way downhill  in many respects since every one was young, but in this one it has improved immeasurably.