It is a truth universally acknowledged that nothing brings a bureaucrat more joy than a solidly idiotic policy, carefully crafted to infuriate the unsuspecting victims who cross its path. And there is perhaps nowhere you encounter more bureaucracies than in air travel. From booking to boarding, flying is a minefield of rules, fees, and middle managers drunk on power.
Unless you’re up for constant road-tripping or a spot on the no-fly list, there’s not much you can do to fight back. Your best bet is to read the fine print, know the rules, and do your best to steer clear when you can (oh, and leave your ninja throwing stars at home). Arm yourself with our roundup of the dumbest policies and regulations enforced by carriers, airports, and Homeland Security.