It surely is fun and exciting when you are about to travel and have fun going abroad or to a domestic destination which you have never been to yet. Riding the airplane isn’t something you can always do. The glee and thrill the night before could be the reason why you lack sleep the morning of your flight.
Especially if it’s your first time to travel far and by plane, there
surely is going to be lots of butterflies in your stomach too! Things can be totally alright if everything goes smoothly. There are instances, however, when unexpected events occur. And with airplane travels, flight delays are among those!
There are many different reasons why flights suddenly get delayed. Two of the most common ones are weather concerns and air traffic control. The list does not end there because there surely are other important and/or urgent reasons! But the question is “How are you supposed to spend your time while waiting?” There are many things you can do, and below is a list of 11 of them.
#1: INQUIRE FOR PRIVILEGES
Nobody wants delayed flights. Especially if you’re totally ready to go and if you are very enthusiastic about traveling, it would be a big heartbreak to hear that your flight is detained. This is much more hurtful if you are actually looking forward to a certain place or activity to catch at a specific time in that country you’re flying to.
With those, the airport cannot just leave you waiting like that. You should know what actions they are taking to make it up to the passengers whose flights were delayed. Inquire, and don’t hesitate to do it kindly. Yes, you have to be polite, even if you’re annoyed by the unwanted issues. In that way, you will be assisted properly, and you will understand all the instructions by the airport staff.
You must know if the airport has special privileges for passengers like you. They can be in any form they have to compensate for the delay. They could be food, hotel stay or discounts. Don’t be demanding, but don’t miss them!
#2: CHANCE FOR THE FORGOTTEN
If there’s anything important which you have forgotten at home, a delayed flight is a blessing in disguise for you to take it with you! Cellular phones, cameras, backup wallets, papers and other important items which you might have left at home can be brought to you if the place is not very far. Even if you’ve already mentally and emotionally accepted that you forgot and left them, with a delayed flight, you can still take advantage!
If there are a few hours left before the new schedule of the flight, you can ask someone trusted from your house to bring your forgotten things to the airport. You just have to coordinate well since airport security is strict. Also, you need to inform the designated airport staff that you are going to pick them up.
Just make sure that this time, you’re not forgetting anything anymore!
#3: INFORM YOUR BOOKED AGENCIES
Since your flight is delayed, your arrival to your destination will be held up. If you have made advanced bookings of hotel accommodation, transportation, tour guides and other necessary travel services, you must inform them about your flight’s delay. In that way, they will not wait for no one on your scheduled arrival date and time. They can also adjust their own list of scheduled clients to accommodate.
Immediately contact the agencies you have gotten. Tell them the reason, and give them details about the rescheduling.
If your flight is delayed for at least half a day, you better choose to rest first in a hotel accommodation. Especially if it’s postponed for a day, you should check into a hotel first, and take some rest. Instead of getting stressed about the matter, you can breathe in and out, and have some relaxation first.
Flight schedule delays happen, and do not be discouraged. The airlines might be giving out hotel accommodation perks or free stay to compensate passengers. Take that as a great opportunity to save money while having a nice unwinding while waiting.
Accommodation bonuses and vouchers, however, are given usually depending on the reason of delay. Weather conditions is not the valid reason but airplane and airline troubles. Especially if the delay takes overnight, they really have to hand you free accommodation stay as you wait.
If you have not taken your breakfast, lunch or dinner yet because you are in a hurry to leave for the airport, you can just have it during the gap time while waiting. Although it’s sad that you really skipped your meal for you to arrive on time, and the flight got delayed, you can take it as a good chance for you to eat calmly and peacefully.
You can check out the fast food restaurants and other food stores in the airport. Buy what you want and only what you can finish. Avoid eating food that will make your tummy hurt and ruin your digestion. You never want to travel with an uncomfortable stomach.
Don’t starve yourself. Eat in healthy proportions, enough to fill you for the long flight. It would be really helpful for your budget if you will eat your packed food or the regular-priced food in the airport than buying your meal inside the plane. It’s not a secret at all that airplane meals are much more expensive. That’s why if you want to save money, eat nice and light before the flight!
#6: PLAY GAMES
When you just play games within the three-hour delay, time will just quickly pass because playing games definitely kill time! It’s unnecessary and unhelpful in days you have to be productive, but in waiting for your delayed flight’s new schedule, it’s a big aid!
#7: WATCH MOVIES AND SERIES
A delayed flight is a chance for you to catch up on your unfinished business in the series you have started watching. A movie marathon would also be perfect if you have a long, long, long time to wait for boarding. Maybe three movies will do!
If you are a book lover or just a fan of a certain writer or artist, go read the book where you have stopped! It’s going to be your chance to continue that story! You might even be able to finish a whole chapter or even a whole book if you will need to wait for very lengthy hours before you can fly! You can read newspapers and magazines in the airport as well.
#9: SOCIAL MEDIA
Well, there is no need to mention, but spending time on your social media accounts would be the most effective way to kill time! Just like the sixth point, even in days you need to be wise of your time, social media usage kills it unnecessarily! Now, on the day of a delayed flight is the most appropriate day to use it!
It’s time to get the latest news online. Check out what videos and memes are currently viral! Stay up-to-date with the current showbiz scoops! Social media is the fastest way to obtain news and even rumors roaming around the world. No doubt.
For your personal updates, you can post your “flight delayed” and “feeling sad” statuses plus photos of you or the airport hallways.
Use your social media as you want while you are still on land because when the airplane flies up there, you can no longer do so.
#10: WALK AROUND
The airport has a lot of gems you would know only if you search. Walk around and explore. There could be nice and cheap stores where you can buy things you’ve forgotten to bring such as toothbrush and wet wipes. Convenience stores would be helpful in this case!
Also, if you will see, there are airports with fitness gyms. If your flight is delayed for long hours or even a day, don’t hesitate to sweat of the wait and probably the disappointment! You might need to rent some workout clothes and equipment, but there could be some unmentioned perks for airline flight delays. Better check them out as well!
There could be some mini shows and presentations like musical instrument playing and art-making stuff. Who knows, right? A walk around the airport will let you discover a lot of “airport only” things!
#11: A RESPONSIBLE NAP
If you have not gotten enough proper sleep because you were too excited or because you went straight to the airport after work, a delayed flight is an unfortunate event with a positive outcome for you!
You can take that time to sleep and ease off, BUT (a big but!) never oversleep! You should have someone with you who can wake you up hours before the rescheduled flight.
Make it a responsible power nap! Your flight is delayed but not cancelled. Those are two different things, so you should not let your tired body fail you by sleeping more than you should! Instead of only a delayed flight, you might become the left passenger you never want to be!
Getting your flight delayed is undesirable, but if that’s the case, you cannot do anything about it. Unless you are not in a hurry to fly to your destination, you should rebook for another flight. If you can however wait, just take the friendly tips above as your guide for things you can do to forget the dismay, to kill time and to be a little productive instead.
Wait and relax. The airplane for you will soon arrive! Happy flight. Happy journey!
Nicole Ann Pore finds glee in writing about travel — world destinations, accommodation, tourist sites, vacation spots and everything else related to it! For her, the beauty of this world is amazing and worth-sharing, and traveling is one of the purest ways to acknowledge it. She is a daytime writer for Holiday Inn Parramatta Hotel, a five-star hotel in Parramatta, New South Wales which provides a rewarding stay and a close reach of Australia’s noteworthy features. | Nicole graduated Cum Laude from De La Salle University Manila, Philippines with a Bachelor’s Degree in Communication Arts.