What Those Triangle Stickers Above Your Airplane Seat Really Mean

Your flight attendant will want to know where those stickers are.

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Next time you’re in an airplane, scan the walls. You might spot four black or red triangle stickers above the windows, two on each side of the plane. They probably don’t mean anything to you, but they mean a lot to flight attendants.

If you go up to the seats with the triangles and look out the window, you’ll notice the stickers line up with the edge of the airplane wing—one for the front, and one for the back. These stickers are just one of the 7 hidden airplane features you never knew about.

When flight attendants or pilots need to look at the wings, the triangle stickers act like a sign telling them exactly where to look. If they’re checking the moving parts of a wing (the flats and slats) for problems like ice, they won’t have to crawl over ten passengers before finding the best view, according to Travel + Leisure. Find the answers to 11 more airplane questions you’ve always wondered.

Queasy passengers might find their own use for the wings, too. The wings are the center of gravity on most planes, and the aircraft moves up and down from the wings like an axis. Sort of like sitting in the middle of a seesaw, you’ll get the least movement and smoothest ride by sitting over the wings, according to pilot “Captain” Joe.

Plus, flight attendants of airlines such as Ryanair might have passengers switch seats to be near those triangles on near-empty flights, according to the pilot. Having everyone sit near the center of gravity balances the plane better so it uses less fuel, he says. Mind blown? Then make sure you study up on more things your flight attendant isn’t telling you before your next flight.

Marissa Laliberte
Marissa Laliberte-Simonian is a London-based associate editor with the global promotions team at WebMD’s Medscape.com and was previously a staff writer for Reader's Digest. Her work has also appeared in Business Insider, Parents magazine, CreakyJoints, and the Baltimore Sun. You can find her on Instagram @marissasimonian.