A flight delay is never part of a traveler’s plan, but stuff like this happens sometimes. This unplanned circumstance could cause one’s mind to wander off far into a panic. It's something no traveler wants to experience, whether it’s a case of traveling to a beautiful destination for vacation or returning home back from a vacation.
A flight delay could spoil the whole excitement and mood of the traveling experience, thereby bringing up bad memories whenever that trip is mentioned. So, it’s pertinent that a traveler avoids such negativity and tries to change the atmosphere to something befitting. As the saying goes, “you make lemonades, if life gives lemons.” It all depends on how you see the whole situation. It may be a flight delay, but it can also be an added vacation time.
In this post, you’ll find different things to do, next time you find yourself in a delayed flight. And as you’ll learn here, a delay can turn right for us and even become a valuable experience - from cosseting on what the airport has to offer, to obtaining a priority pass. If we look at the brighter side of things, we may notice that the flight delay might just be a blessing in disguise. If you are eager to learn about all you can do at the airport, then make sure you read on.
20 Create an Itinerary for Your Holiday
It’s important to plan each day of your vacation ahead, especially, if you’re visiting the destination for the first time. You can learn about the transport system, nightlife, restaurants, shops, city activities, and if possible museums. It saves you the stress of guessing and scrambling all over the place for things when you arrive.
A delayed flight could be what you need to do all the research and planning required if you haven’t done it yet. This activity will help you save enough time. In the end, the flight delay won’t be a loss anyway.
19 Play Games from Your Phone
Playing games from your smartphone is one activity that always suffices when one is stuck with young and bored teenage kids in an airport. Most times, the long wait could be mental torture for the young folks as they tend to be restless.
In scenarios where there are no games on your smartphone, you can choose to give them some pocket money and allow them to go to the game arcade within the airport. No doubt, your teens will thank you for giving them freedom from boredom.
18 Prop Up The Bar
Propping up the bar is not a good idea for you if you’re traveling with kids. However, it can come in handy if you’re going with your spouse on vacation. You and your spouse can visit the bar at the airport to take a few drinks while you wait for your flight.
However, it’s crucial that you watch what you take and ensure you drink responsibly. You don’t want to get too drunk not to hear your flight destination announcement.
17 Complain to The Airline
Instead of sitting down, complaining and getting frustrated with yourself or your travel partner, you can choose to walk up to the airline officials, ask for the manager and complain. You can get this done without yelling at the top of your voice or distracting other airport activities.
A great way to go about it is to ask for the official in charge, enter the office, and calmly ask about the condition of the flight. That way you can get some gratification after you know what is going on.
16 Create A Documentary
With the advent of the internet these days, creating a documentary could be a great way of keeping yourself company when you face a flight delay situation. And it’s easy to create one. All you need is your smartphone and probably a selfie stick. Tada! You’re ready to start shooting.
With the likes of Snapchat, Instagram and Whatsapp Update Status, you can let your friends and family know how you’re spending your time at the airport before boarding for your vacation, while you still get comments and likes.
15 Watch A Movie On Netflix
Most airports have free Wi-Fi, which is usually open to passengers waiting to board their flights. You can connect to the wireless internet with your smartphone, tablet, or laptop and find something online to watch. After all, that’s a great time to use free internet to stream videos live, without paying for it.
It’s better if you have a Netflix account. You can decide to use the internet to stream those movies you’ve always wanted to watch. Never forget to use your headphones so you don’t disturb other passengers. Also, you have to be alert to know when your flight is ready.
14 Take Some Cool Photos
It’s quite interesting to take cool pictures while traveling. It’s actually a traveling abomination to go on vacation without taking pictures. Who doesn’t love to take pictures after all? Photos are one of the best ways to keep memories that your eyes or brain may not be able to store for a long time.
Some airports often boast of unusual architecture, so travelers have the opportunity to take beautiful images of the surroundings and the airplanes. No doubt, taking such cool photos is a great way to pass the time while you’re waiting for your delayed flight.
13 Grab A Bite to Eat
Airlines are usually obliged to provide travelers with meal vouchers when they are held up in the airport by a delayed flight for more than two hours. Most airports have a variety of food outlets where travelers can visit. Therefore, a traveler on a delayed flight can choose from the various eateries available. It’s a good way of passing the time before the plane is ready.
It’s important not to throw caution to the wind while having these meals. “Too much of everything isn’t good” as they say. It would be nice to keep the eating in check, to avoid visiting the restroom a countless number of times – which could make you miss your flight announcement.
12 Go Shopping in the Duty-Free Shop
Going for shopping is an excellent way of using your time while waiting for your flight. You can decide to shop for some holiday gifts before you take off. Usually, there is an array of giant Toblerone, drinks, perfume, candy, which you get at almost every Duty-Free shop available in every airport.
You could find a great selection of shops in bigger airports, where you may even find great items that you can treat yourself with during your vacation. Nevertheless, it’s essential you avoid excess shopping, so you don’t shop to drop.
11 Do Some Work
If you enjoy putting in extra hours to do some work, then this should interest you a great deal. Doing this is best if you’re on a business trip. You can choose to finish a sales report that looks like a lot of work or catch up on emails.
Regardless of the kind of work you choose to do, the airport has the right environment that would help you to focus and do your job efficiently. The business lounge around the terminal is one of the ideal places to work because it’s not just quiet but also comfortable.
10 Take A Nap
This option could be a taboo for many because they may be scared of missing their flight, thus taking a nap is the last thing on the to-do list or doesn’t exist at all. But what if you booked a morning flight? It means that you woke up early enough to get to the airport.
If this is the case, finding somewhere comfy and quiet to catch some sleep is best. While you’re at it, ensure you pull your hood up, put on headphones, and set the alarm. You can also opt for executive lounges as they tend to have beds available for a surcharge.
9 Go Sight Seeing
Most travelers dislike layovers for one reason- it’s time-consuming. It may even result in setbacks like an added delay or missing the flight- which is enough reason to avoid it. Plus, it’s frustrating to get stuck in a foreign airport. If you look on the bright side, this could be fun, but it depends on how much time you have to spare from the delayed flight. If you have several hours, you can visit a tourist attraction, indulge at a restaurant outside of the airport or explore the layover city.
8 Read A Book
When you’re packing your bags, it’s necessary you take a book along. If you forget to do so by any chance, you can choose to buy one. There’s always a bookshop at the airport, stocked with the latest bestsellers.
Reading at such time is an excellent idea, that’s why it will be an excellent time to take the opportunity. If reading a hardcopy is old-school or doesn’t cut it for you, technology has you covered because you can gain access to e-books with your smartphone.
7 Go On Social Media
These days, social media appears to be most people’s go-to during a flight delay. You can access various platforms from Snapchat, Twitter, Facebook to Instagram. Burning so much time is quite easy with these applications.
While you’re at it, you can seize the opportunity to share some vacation photos with your friends or followers. All this usually results in the added discussion which takes time, and before you know it, it would be time to board the plane back home.
6 Explore The Airport
Since you’re looking for an excellent way to pass time, you can choose to take a tour or explore the airport. It’s a good strategy, and it also has a way of consuming so much time. If you decide to go to the Duty-Free shop, you could get lost glancing at the goodies available or trying out all the new perfumes.
You can also use the bookstore and feed your eyes with some magazines and books that will help you get through the delay. The boutiques and other facilities in the airport could help as well.
5 Plane Spotting
Not everybody buys the idea of plane spotting, but you can use this option especially if you’re going on a family holiday and your kids need to do something that would keep them busy for a while.
Since most airports have a spot, viewing area or windows, you can relax and watch the planes come and go. The only caution to this option is try not to feel sad about your plane delay while at it. Other than that, plane spotting is a good alternative.
4 Hit The Airport GYM
Are you surprised? Well, don’t be because many airports have gyms these days. Perhaps they finally realized that some delayed passengers could use the gym to ease the stress of the long waiting.
With a gym in the airport, you can decide to add finishing touches to your “beach body.” What’s more? Once you’re done with your work out, you can freshen up, and you’d be good to go. However, if there isn’t a gym at the airport, you can run down the travellators towards the boarding gate.
3 Take A Shot at A Slot Machine
Using a slot machine is possible in airports like the McCarran International Airport located in Las Vegas. The airport has slot machines all over. However, if you must use a slot machine, you must pass two requirements. First, you must be over 21 and second, you must have some cash on you.
And while you’re at it, who knows? You may end up with so much cash to go holiday shopping. In fact, someone has hit the $3.9 million jackpot on the (wheel of fortune) machine.
2 Make New Friends
Making new friends would excite people that love networking with people from different races and parts of the world. The best thing to do is walk up to exciting people that appear to be facing the same predicament as you.
Once you’ve found a new friend or new friends, you can while away the time by discussing different things like football, weather, fashion, or politics. If this seems too awkward for you, you can start a conversation with an apparent common interest which is a delayed flight.
1 Write Something
The best time to get the best inspirations and ideas are in situations where we are less pressurized - in a calm and collected state. A flight delay could be an excellent time for you to put down some notes, writing about everything that comes to mind. It’s better if you are taking notes about stuff that concern what you do.
It will surprise you how putting down notes can be a great way of keeping yourself company. You’d love the opportunity if you are a writer.
References: forbes.com, travel.usnews.com, ccntraveler.com