Interesting list from Bill Murphy, Jr. on how being a passenger is part of a dog-eat-dog world. Example:
I met a guy who says he gets two seats for the price of one on long train rides. His trick is to buy beer in the station, puts a few cans on the tray table, and stare like a fake drunk at whoever starts to sit next to him. Result: He spreads out; everyone else crams in elsewhere.
This one sounds pretty horrible, which is probably why nobody who says they’ve done it was willing to be quoted. However, I’ve heard about travelers–always a friend of a friend, it seems, so maybe that’s heartening–who carried a cane or crutches after they no longer needed them. The point, of course, is to entice a gate agent to let them board an airplane early.