Monday, August 29, 2005

Killing Time in Airport

Okay, here's my contribution for September issue of Asian Airlines and Aerospace. Very useful.


Killing Time In Airport

You are in a transit. You have another three hours before your next flight. What do you do? Who do you call? Ghostbusters?

Fret not, I have all the right stuff you can do to kill time. If these steps do not help, well, I suggest the most common and inevitable measure – sleep on the benches.

So, first things first, how do you deal with the stress? Head to the nearest bar and have a glass of beer? Are you crazy? Do you how much a glass of beer costs in airport lounges?

Well, I checked howto.com and it says that you should go to the gym. Well, I know its not much fun, but at least you can get tired enough to sleep on the bench.

What if the airport has no gym? Well, don’t look at me; I didn’t suggest the gym thing. The same site says that you can ‘power-walk’ around the entire airport. “Store luggage in terminal lockers, lace up those walking shoes and get the blood pumping,” the site says. How appropriate! And watch out for that “Wet Floor” sign.

Next, the helpful site says that bored passengers can “Surf the Web and answer e-mail at an Internet kiosk to make the time fly. Keep in mind that, in some airports, you'll be charged for the time you spend online.”

Always remember to spend wisely. We don’t want to see you scrounging for money because you hocked your return ticket. The Internet can be addictive, especially the chat rooms

Next, one can purchase souvenirs and presents for friends and family at the airport's gift shops and retail stores. The most popular souvenirs have always been chocolates. The reason is simple; if you get hungry you can eat them yourself. Don’t worry about the empty box, when you present them to your loved ones don’t forget to quote Forrest Gump.

“Get a shoeshine,” says the site, though it did not state what to do if you are wearing sandals. Shine your legs? The site says that many larger airports feature hallway shine specialists to buff and polish your shoes. If the airport doesn’t have such facilities you can do it yourself. What did you say? No wax of your own? Now, you know what else to bring along during your trips, don’t you?

Next comes the best part. The site asks you to enjoy a drink in the airport bar if there is one. “In US airports,” it says, “the day's big sporting event will probably be blaring on the television.” That is in the US. In other countries, the shows themselves are the reason why we should stick to the bar and drown our sorrows with a bartender who probably does not speak our language.

The seventh step is to have a good book. This is my favourite time killing measure. Make sure it’s a good book. You can scrounge the bookstores in the airport, but I warn you, you don’t usually get what you want. Sure, the bestsellers will always be there. But for readers like me, who prefer books written by authors who p[probably died fifty years ago, it can be tough. So, bring your own book. If not, bring books belonging to other people. Make sure you get their permission first though.

The site also gave an ultimate, “Keep your eye on a clock at all times, and check the departure screens regularly to ensure that you do not miss your flight.” This is provided you are not at the bar or reading a book. One can’t be doing too many things at the same time.

I hope these tips are useful. In fact, I am killing my time right now writing this piece.

Wait a minute…gosh darn! I think my flight just took off!

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