How many times do you show up at your destination when traveling needing to recover from the journey? Wouldn’t it be nice if you arrived ready to delight in your vacation, perform your best on business travel, or be present for your family and friends at your destination?
Growing up living in Maryland and having my father living in Toronto, Canada, I have been a regular traveler since age 3. I also love to travel and somehow find myself always going somewhere whether for business, pleasure, or a training program. I have been to all 50 states in the U.S. and visited 23 countries. I would have continued around the world but Mexico, Italy, and India stole my heart. In college, I even got to design an airport as one of my engineering projects.
As you can imagine, I have been collecting a lot of travel tips that help me arrive at my destination refreshed and ready. Before holiday travel begins, I thought I would share four key ideas to consider for enjoying traveling by air a lot more.
One: Simplify Your Environment
One of the biggest reasons people get depleted from airplane travel is the noise, movement, and number of people in confined airports. The more you can find quiet and personal space, the better.
1. While waiting for your plane, sit in a wing or at a gate that does not have any flights leaving soon. There will be less people, no announcements, and your choice of seating.
2. Retreat to a frequent flyer club room. You won’t hear the announcements from every gate at the club rooms. They are a nicer space with less people. They often have free snacks, fruit, coffee, and juice. They have free wifi. Sometimes they have certain areas designated for socializing, business, quiet, or relaxing. There should be no problem finding outlets to charge your devices. There are probably more features that I never asked about or noticed.
United gives away two club passes a year just for joining their frequent flyer plan for free and getting a credit card with them.
(By the way frequent flyer plans are the best! I’m going to India and Europe for free because of miles I have accumulated! Remember daily expenses, hotel stays, car rentals, and online shopping all count towards your mileage total.)
If you frequently fly to certain areas, you probably already know which airline you most commonly use. Also, check where certain airlines have their hubs and plan your layovers in those airports so you can take advantage of their club rooms.
3. Many airports now have a yoga, meditation, or prayer room. They are nicely soundproofed, barely used, and a great respite. Bringing in your spiritual practices where you tune inwards is another way to escape the outside commotion.
4. Take advantage of getting a massage, nails done, or the sleeping rooms for rent. One time I had a few hours in a foreign airport. I found their airport hotel, got a sweet soundproofed room, had an amazingly deep nap, and got to take a refreshing shower all for a small fee.
5. Another one of my favorites is taking a walk through the airport to get exercise and listening to relaxing music or an inspiring talk on my headset to drown out other noises. Plan ahead to wear good walking shoes and carry minimal carry-on luggage.