Your bags are packed, you have your boarding pass in your hand, and you just can’t wait to greet those adorable flight attendants with your big I’m-ready-to-explore-the-world smile. But before you even get to set foot on that aircraft, there are the typical steps that you have to go through at the airport. If you’re fortunate to pass them quickly, you would have plenty of time to spare at the boarding area which is generally a good thing. Sometimes, though, the experience of being here can turn from exciting to agonising real quick. How, then, can you make use of that time without going mad? Below are things you can do if you’re a true-blue Filipino or one at heart.
1. Chat with your companions
You don’t need to be an extrovert to strike up a conversation with your travel companions. Use this time to go over your plans for the trip once more, talk about a recent travel film you’ve watched, or even start planning your next trip. What harm can that do anyway?
2. Chat with anyone around you
So you’re travelling solo? Even as an introvert, you’re smart enough to know that sometime during your trip, you’ll need to talk to someone. What better way to practise it than by turning to your boarding seatmate, an airport staff or a fellow solo traveller for a little conversation?
3. Browse through your smartphone
If you already have phone games or applications installed on your phone, great! If you don’t, now would be the time to do it. You can even take advantage of the free WiFi (or your leftover local data), no matter how slow it is, and surf away! Or why not open your favourite application like Instagram to get some last-minute travel inspiration?
4. Practise your faces and poses for imminent photo sessions
Whether you’re a frequent or conservative shooter, knowing how to take the best photos with your smartphone or any of your gadgets is fundamental. Turn on your selfie camera and start working on your expressions and possible poses. If you can’t do them on the spot just yet (yes we know, there might be too many people around you), try coming up with them in your head or in writing in the meantime.
5. Double check your itinerary and notes
No matter how prepared you think you are, there’s always a chance that you’ll end up forgetting something somehow. So take out your itinerary and notes, and review everything you’ve written down, from the hotel name and address to other important travel information. This will make you a much more efficient traveller as well.
6. Make a dummy itinerary
If you don’t have an itinerary, try making one for fun. Who knows, you might end up liking it and using it on your actual trip! Again, you can use your smartphone to look for travel guides or message someone you know who’s been to your destination for more information.
7. Write a social media post
Some people try not to share anything about the trip online before it happens because of the belief that it might jinx the whole thing. Others do it to hype themselves up even more, which makes the trip truly something to look forward to.
8. Eat your packed food
A good habit to practise when travelling is packing food at home. It helps you save and you also get to bring something that reminds you of home on your trip. If you don’t have much room to bring snacks for every day of your trip, at least bring something to keep you full when at the airport.
9. Read a magazine or pocketbook
If you’ve got something bookmarked on your phone or any reading material you brought from home, this is the perfect time to read it. For the latter, go for something that won’t add significant weight to your bags and one that you can easily pull out and store. This way, there’s less chance of you misplacing any of your belongings.
10. Take a stroll
Aside from giving you a chance to study the airport, walking around will also tire you just enough to help you sleep for some time while in-flight. This will prove most useful if you’re flying for more than two hours and you run out of things to keep you entertained. So get your earphones out and walk to your favourite upbeat (or hugot) music!
11. Prettify yourself
Just because you’ll be locked inside the airplane for hours, it doesn’t mean you no longer have to invest on your look. Put some makeup here and there, style your hair or even put on a nice in-flight OOTD. If flight attendants can look so good while on a flight, so can you!
12. Go window shopping
It’s always tempting to watch other people shop when you’re trying hard to contain yourself from spending at all. But if you can survive it, it will definitely be something to be proud of later on.
13. People watch
Too lazy to get up and do something? You don’t always have to unless, of course, you’re going to the toilet. Sometimes you can achieve a lot just by staying in your seat, like observing all the passengers or airport staff around you. In fact, you may not be the only one to do it.
14. Meditate or avail a massage (but don’t sleep!)
The more developed airports usually have massage rooms or chairs, while others have chapels. These facilities give you a chance to be productive without doing much. It will also help you ease up worries about flying or your trip in general. Just don’t get too carried away and end up falling asleep. You’ll need it more on the plane later on, trust me.
15. Play any travel-related recreation
I Spy, Rock Paper Scissors and PANTS (Place, Animal, Name, Thing, Score) — these are travel games that you can do if you’re travelling with other people. Although not necessarily of Filipino origin, they have become staple activities among many Filipino families.
If you’re about to board a flight pretty soon, these activities will make it easier for you during those boring waiting times at the airport. The best part? You don’t need to spend money on most of them! After all, Filipinos are known for being extremely resourceful, are we not?