Okay, all of us know to get to an airport with lots of time to spare. I feel like that is less of a tip and more common sense. (Except for you– you who thinks you are special and can show up late and ask to go to the front of the security line and every other line. We all have lives and have to get them together. Deal.) However, I have spent a great deal of time in airports and have come to realise that there are a few things that can make your time spent in an airport a little bit better.
1) Do your research– Google is your friend. Research the airport(s) that you will be spending time in- find out if there is free wi-fi. Honestly, I find it worth it to pay for a month of Boingo or whatever service it is to have access. Plus, unless your trip is longer than a month, it will be useful on the way back. Also try to find out, is there somewhere you can plug in your electronics if needed? Check out the airport layout and see how far apart things are. If you have a fair amount of time in the airport, you are probably going to do some wandering. Find out what your food options are. Know what you are dealing with. A crappy airport can be made better by preparing yourself.
2) If you are going to stand on a moving sidewalk, stand so that people can walk past you. I will admit, aside from those who physically cannot walk, I do not believe that you should stand on a moving sidewalk. Walking is a basic human behaviour, and they didn’t invent moving sidewalks for people to be even lazier than we already are. (And yes, I yell at myself when I stand on an escalator.) Moving sidewalks help people get from one gate to another faster- PEOPLE NEED TO MAKE CONNECTIONS. If you are incredibly tired and/or need a break from walking, sit down and take a break. Do not use a moving sidewalk for this. We have all been running for a connection and been stuck behind this person. DON’T BE THIS PERSON.
3) Bring something not internet-based to amuse yourself- If there is no free wi-fi and you don’t want to pay for any, you should probably plan on having something to do. I personally have my kobo, a paperback, and a magazine for reading. The kobo allows me to carry as many books as I want to. The paperback is for take-off and landing, as some airlines/countries will not let you use any electronics below a certain altitude. The magazine is because I have a tradition of reading Hello every time I fly. I NEED MY ROYAL NEWS, OKAY???
4) Find the bathroom BEFORE you find your seat to wait. There’s nothing like finding a seat close-ish to your gate, taking off your coat, and getting settled, and then figuring out that you have to use the washroom and having to pack up and leave. So, do yourself a favour and use the washroom before you settle in.
5) Don’t be that jerk who takes up a seat with your bag/coat/food/beverage/bad attitude. If it is an overbooked flight, THERE ARE GOING TO BE PEOPLE THERE WHO WOULD LIKE TO SIT DOWN. This sounds obvious but there are butt-faced miscreants who think that they are above common decency. Your airport pretzel is not above me; I do not deserve to sit on the floor while it gets it’s own chair.
6) Pay attention to your boarding group– you are in boarding group five. You didn’t magically jump to group two, so sit down and don’t hold up the line while they tell you to wait. If you aren’t going to pay to check a bag, realise that if you picked the cheapest option on a flight, your carry on might not be be directly above you on a plane. This is life, and is part of picking cheaper flights. Jumping up a boarding group just makes you a jerk.
7) Be considerate of those around you. If you see someone digging through their bag looking for something while struggling to keep everything from falling, offer to hold something for them. If someone wants to sit beside their SO/friend/sibling/parent and asks you to switch, try to make that switch happen (unless there is a legitimate reason, not “I don’t feel like switching”). If someone beside you is freaking out about making a connection, catch the flight attendant so they can ask them. A little kindness goes a long way when you are travelling, and you never know when it is going to come back your way.