Photo by Nicola
It’s every traveler’s biggest pet peeve. You’re all fired up and ready to hit the beach and then BOOM. Your flight has been delayed. You now have an extra 5 hours to kill and no clue how to fill them. Luckily, with years of airport boredom under our belts, we have come up with a number of ways to keep busy during the dreaded airport flight delay. There’s no reason to start your trip off as a downer…so here are 8 ways to find fun in the little things!
1. Traveling with a friend? How about turning people watching into a competition? Choose someone and make up their backstory. Compare stories with your buddy, and then work up the courage to tell it to that person to see who was the closest to reality! Tip: If you’ve included some, ahem, ‘personal’ details, maybe keep those between the two of you.
2. Pamper yourself! Airports often have on-the-go-style spas. A quick 20-minute back massage or pedicure (get those toes beach ready!) can improve your mood immensely. Low on cash? Go use a massage chair for $2 and then just don’t get up after. They’re the definition of comfy.
3. Feeling ballsy? Ask that cute stranger sitting across from you out on a date to the nearest airport bar or restaurant. Chances are you’ll never see them again, so no pressure! And if you like each other and it turns out you’re on the same flight…maybe you can check another item off that bucket list….
4. Let out your inner social media mogul and turn your misery into a series of hilarious tweets. Catch the eye of the internet, and then Hollywood, and then who knows?! You could be a millionaire in no time! (Hey, it could happen.)
5. Get all caught up on your shows. Aren’t you tired of screaming at your co-workers to shut up the moment they say the words “So I can’t believe Jon Snow…”
6. Start a card game. What backpacker doesn’t carry a deck of cards or, in the case of Free & Easy Travelers, a game of Monopoly Deal? Sit down with your friends, or invite some strangers over, to wile away the time while having a blast.
7. In an especially ambitious mood? Create a scavenger hunt with your friends! Make a list of ridiculous items to find, or hilarious photos to take, and see who comes out on top. Be warned, competitive natures and boatloads of giggles may make an appearance.
8. Know your airport! Do a quick google search of what entertainment options your airport has to offer. Some airports go out of their way to ensure that travelers stuck on delays actually enjoy their extra time in the terminal. Stuck in Hong Kong? Watch a movie in their 4-D cinema or learn to fly in the simulated cockpit. In Munich, play an 18-hole round of mini golf or take a behind the scene tour of how the airport operates. Hanging out in San Fran for the night? Check out one of the 3 aquariums or tour the aviation museum for a little pre-flight education.
As a backpacker, positivity should be right up there (alongside a good book and some aloe) on the list of travel must-haves. You never know what a travel day may throw at you: massive delays, cancellations, being rerouted to another destination…the list is endless. And that’s part of the fun! If you embrace the situation instead of trying to fight it, travel days (no matter how long) can be some of the best days of your trip. We promise!
Written by Juli Ribi of our sister company, Free and Easy Traveler