Dealing with the Dreaded Layover10/19/2009
The chance of experiencing a layover skyrockets with overseas travel. Make it a tolerable layover. The average layover time is dismal, a whopping 10 hours! We all have stories of long layovers at the airport, myself included.
Sure, there are plenty of things to preoccupy yourself with while backpacking through a European village, but 10 hours inside a sterile airport is another story.
Now is the time to learn some easy ways of keeping yourself entertained and sane during your next layover.
From the moment the voice on the loud speaker announces that your flight will not be leaving for another 10 hours, start your quest for a tolerable layover by taking a deep breath. Studies show that controlling the breathing is the first step to conquering an otherwise stressful situation.
Next, take inventory of what you have in your carry- on. A savvy traveler always brings some form of entertainment with them, such as a good thriller novel, the latest tabloid, or crossword puzzles.
If you are unequipped with these weapons against mass boredom, make your way to one of the airport’s newsstands. Airport newsstands always offer more periodical choices than your neighborhood grocery store, so you are bound to find a publication to spark your interest.
While you are at the newsstand, be sure to stock up on snacks if you don’t have any sustenance in your carry- on. Ten hours is a long time to go without food, and not all airports or airline carriers are thoughtful enough to feed their inconvenienced patrons. When selecting your useful layover snacks, be sure to pick snacks high in fiber and protein, which will allow you to stay fuller longer.
Now that you are armed with an arsenal of literary entertainment and snacks, you need to find a section of the airport where you will be comfortable but still within earshot of any announcements, in case fate lands you on an earlier flight.
Many people make the mistake of abandoning the section of the airport where flight information is announced, often times losing out on earlier flights and becoming more inconvenienced.
If you are the active type, ask an airport employee if there are any workout facilities. It usually costs about $15 for a day pass to an airport work out facility. Most of the facilities have lockers and showers, so you can be sure that your belongings are secure and you won’t be black- listed as the smelly guy no one wants to sit next to.
The bottom line is layovers on trips or vacations are not welcomed with open arms. Since you have no choice but to endure a layover, you might as well make it a tolerable layover by remaining calm, entertained, and satiated.
On a side note, I added the website, Sleeping in Airports to my Resource page. A great site to find the best nooks and cranys in the airport you will be sleeping in.