Unexpected scenarios such as severe weather conditions and mechanical disruptions can sometimes keep us stuck at the airport for long, due to delayed or cancelled flights. However, getting stalled in transit doesn't have to be a total drag. In order to surpass boredom, here are some fun ways to help minimise stress and make the most of those extra hours at the airport.
1. Check with your airline regarding flight delay/stopover policy:
Some international airlines offer hotel facilities to passengers if flights are delayed up to a certain number of hours. It's wise to double check that with your carrier, so the option of unwinding in a nice hotel is always available.
2. Power up all batteries and devices:
Make sure all necessary devices (particularly your phone) are always charged. Put your phone in Airplane Mode and shut off your wifi to conserve battery. Check it once every hour to catch up on updates from the outside world.
3. Download movies or TV shows before leaving:
Thanks to Netflix, we now have the opportunity to download shows for offline entertainment. Movies may take up space on your tablet or phone, but it sure beats trying to rely on airport wifi shared by thousands of people in one go.
4. Read a book:
A good book will always keep you company. It is the underrated entertainment that should occupy some space in everyone's hand luggage.
5. Explore different areas of the airport:
Check out areas outside of your concourse - most international airports are downright awesome with loads of entertainment outlets. Walk or take the shuttle to another section with more amenities, dining options and duty-free shops. Go through the airport website and look for latest events, installations and special attractions.
Indoor waterfall at Changi Airport, Singapore
6. Treat yourself at the airport spa:
Airport spas usually offer an extensive range of treatments befitting for all budgets - not just expensive massages and bank-breaking sauna experiences. Treat yourself to a nice facial or a pedicure while you wait for your flight to board.
7. Unplug at the airport lounge:
If your airline doesn't provide hotel facilities and you're in dire need of sleep, airport lounges are pretty good at providing temporary relief. Some of the best lounges I've experienced are in Dubai - UAE, Doha - Qatar and Singapore - with chairs reclining to the point of becoming actual beds.
Airport lounge at Oslo Airport, Norway
8. Savour a meal:
It doesn't have to be a Michelin Star experience - even comfort food like Burger King or McDonald's are stress relievers in situations testing our patience. Plus, boredom is almost always interrelated with hunger.