While I enjoy flying, the task of sitting in the same pressured cabin for several hours is a challenging feat for me. I can’t focus on things for long amounts of time, let alone sleep in an upright position. So, after the euphoria originating from the 30 minutes after take off, what do I do?
I know, stereotypical, but for those of you who can be in high altitude, moving objects and not get sick looking at things in detail, reading is definitely a good way to pass time. There is limitless material, and lots of US airports allow you to pick a book and for a small fee, read and return it if you are doing a round trip. This can be super convenient for those who don’t have room on their shelves or don’t want to spend full price on a book they may read once.
2. Watch Movies
Iron Man marathon on the way to Europe? Sure. Movies are a good way to pass time (although once I had to sit for half of Race, the movie about Jesse Owens while trying not to pee my pants due to the passed our drunk Brit next to me. Kinda ruined the movie). For 9+ hour flights, trilogies or four movie series (think super hero movies, Divergent, Hunger Games, Cars, Ice Age, and Toy Story), these will keep you engaged and then you don’t have to remember what happened in the previous one before you watch the sequel!
3. Make Friends
Yes, I know. Lots of us hate that one person on the plane that just keeps talking. But there is multiple occasions on puddle jumpers or 3-5 hour flights that you will be seated next to someone who is willing to strike up a conversation (hints: usually an elderly lady who already read her magazines or someone not listening to music/movies). For example, I spend my flight from Heathrow (London) to Charles De Gaulle (Paris), talking to a man who was writing a book about his travels to South Africa and Iraq about the true meaning of identity and individuality. I found it very intriguing. He also gave me snacks and lots of really good French food. Also PSA: make friends with the flight attendants. There was a very attractive (if I may say so) attendant only a few years older than I who, during his breaks, came and sat by me to talk. His name was Mehrid and he constantly snuck chocolate from the business class for me (what’s up with people giving me food on this flight?). I learned he was bilingual sort of (twinsies!) and was hoping to be a pilot fairly soon. When the flight landed, he grabbed all my bags for me and said he hoped to see me again one day. See? I’m telling ya, make friends on your flights, it’s not all bad!
4. Catch up on Journals
If you are beginning a trip, write out your goals, or a bucket list, or any future plans for this trip. Why are you here? What do you hope to do? Record even the smallest details. My type A personality makes me write these out, which comes in handy in cases such as above story about Mehrid. I couldn’t remember the details or remember where that author had been but boom! there it was.
5. Card Games
For long flights, many screen things (what are the name for these, someone help), many offer board and card games. I personally am a huge fan of solitaire, its a good way to keep your mind sharp and distracted for a while until the attendants bring the food carts around. Don’t know how to play? Well, its a good time to learn.
6. Clean up SD Cards and Electronics
I almost always travel with my laptop/camera/phone, etc. in my carry on. Don’t need it bashed around in my suitcase, thank you very much! But taking the time to put all previous photos and videos on a drive or in files is a very smart thing to do before you embark on another journey. For me, I do this almost every night, but I would definitely recommend doing it in flight at the least. That way you have easy access to documenting your photos and much more!
What do you do on planes? What’s the worst part about planes? Leave comments below and make sure to follow me on social media!