4 Tips to Help You Stay Sane While Traveling
I hate flying—I mean I HATE flying. It’s long, it’s uncomfortable, and it’s boring. Sure, a flight to somewhere close is enjoyable and interesting since you’re awed by the Earth so far below you, but what about when you’re spending 12+ hours on a plane? You start to lose your bananas.
Studying abroad is one of the best experiences of your life, but the flight to get there not so much. More than likely you’ll wake before the sun to sit in an airport for what seems to be endless hours waiting for your flight. The anxiety and excitement of traveling to a different country can get you through this part. The catch is that this flight is probably just your connecting flight; you’ll be flying to an airport not too far away (if you’re lucky you only have one connecting flight).
After you land in Pittsburgh, Dulles, JFK, or wherever your first flight takes you, you will more than likely be stuck there for a few additional hours, minimum. I remember one trip I took had the connecting flight at 11 am and my main flight wasn’t until 7 pm. Airports are fun, but not fun enough to keep you entertained for hours on end.
I don’t even want to get into how exhausting the flight itself is. You’re cramped into a seat for long hours with only the person next to you and a little TV on your seat. You’ll try to sleep, but if you’re like me you’ll fail miserably. I’ve composed this list to help make your flight (and mine) more bearable.
1.Bring a Book
Or magazine. Or cards. Or whatever your imagination comes up with. Bring something to keep yourself entertained on the flight. Some planes have built in TVs for their passengers, but not every aircraft does. Having a backup plan just incase you don’t have a TV will help immensely.
2.Bring a Pillow
More than likely you will want to sleep on the flight, especially if it is your main flight to your destination. I will be traveling on a seven-hour flight in two weeks, so I have already made sure I have my pillow handy. The seats aren’t the most don’t offer the most comfortable sleeping place, and the blanket you’re given isn’t much help. Having a travel-sized pillow will make all the difference in your travels.
The great thing is if you forget your pillow at home, the airport usually has them for sale in one of their many shops.
3.Charge Your Phone
This applies to any device you have—laptop, iPod, tablet, etc. You can’t use them for Internet purposes in flight unless you want a hefty bill from your carrier, but you can use them between flights. This comes in handy when you long layovers. You can work on your computer, text your friends, check Facebook, or whatever will keep you entertained in the process.
I made this the last number for a reason—it’s the most important! Well, to me at least. Each airport has its own different food court of different cuisine. I like to try out the different options during my layover time. You can find some very interesting meals in the food court, and who doesn’t love to eat? It keeps you entertained, and if you happen to be traveling with others this gives you a nice environment to get to know each other before you spend time together in a foreign country.
These four things are what keep me at least somewhat sane during the course of my travels. If you have any more tips to navigating the flight, please feel free to share them! We all can benefit from them.
(Feature photo from fansshare.com)