If you’re an experienced traveler, this has happened to you. If you are not yet a seasoned traveler, with points under your belt, don’t worry, this will still happen to you at some point in your journeys. The extended layover, the missed flight, the delayed flight, the canceled flight. It will happen and the most important thing to remember is that 9 times out of 10, the person delivering the horrible message to you, didn’t create the message. They are just the carrier, so please, please, don’t yell at the gate agent, don’t curse at the ramp attendant when you’re finally boarding to your destination. I bet they want to be at home or on that beach just as much as you do.
Tips to pass the time.
Well, pick up a book and read. It’s your cheapest option. You would be surprised how fast the time goes by when you get caught up in a suspenseful crime drama or a life changing self-help book. And bonus, they sell them everywhere in the airports, big or small.
I also enjoy writing, clearly. But heres the alternative, you know those 25 cent postcards they sell all over the airport, “Welcome to Miami,” well buy a couple dozen and write to your family members. Heres a tip that you may not know, there are mailboxes available in the airport. So write your grandma a nice note tell her how you didn’t get wasted on the beach, or even just to your kids, telling them you miss them and will be home soon. They are adorable keepsakes that can be treasured for many years to come. And if your layover is really bad, it might even get home before you do! I kid, I kid.
Ok, so here are my thoughts to sleeping in the airport, yes everyone does it at some point or another. I am personally not a fan of it because it is a little nerve racking, me being a woman traveling alone, but after 10 hours of sitting up right in a medal chair, a nap really does sound appealing. So find a high traffic area, near other layover unfortunates, curl up with your bags in hand or as a head support and try your best to get comfy. If you have a t-shirt or sweater in your carry on bag that you know you won’t be using again for the trip, lay it down a rest up!
Finally, most travelers are well equipped with a computer that basically goes everywhere you do. Let me introduce you to what I call “Bob Box.” Now that doesn’t sound like something you can purchase through amazon but you may order it at your local burger joint, but let me tell you, it comes in handy. It is a external hard drive. My brother-in-law, Bob, got it for me and added a few of my favorite movies to it for when I am wifi-less. Its a great investment, wifi isn’t always available and if it is, it costs! So unless you’re a high-roller, this Bob Box is just for you. The added bonus, it doesn’t drain your computer battery like streaming movies/music does. Most airports do have outlets placed in charging stations. The last thing you’re going to want to do during your layover life is cuddle up next to a large group people struggling for charge, when you have to spend the next 5-7 hours on a flights cuddled up to more strangers.
These alternatives will help you a long way. Traveling is a fun experience but like all things in life; not everything that is fun will work out to perfection.