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Stuck at the Airport? Our Top 6 Alternative Airport Boredom Busters

Every been stuck at the airport hours before your flight leaves with nothing to do? Try out our top 6 airport boredom busters to kill the time.

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Airplane taking off

4 hours to go until your flight leaves you are rushing around the house grabbing those last minute items to squeeze in to your overflowing suitcase. Out the door to the waiting taxi with a jacket hanging off one arm and all your gear in the other. A moment of panic as you re-check your pockets for your passport only to find it had mysteriously slipped into another bag.

Airplane taking off

All that stress washes away as you hand over your luggage and receive your shiny boarding pass. You give yourself a mental high five and a pat on the back. You don’t even mind that the beefy security guard has just given you a rub-down that you would usually pay for in Thailand.

Then the reality hits you like a wet fish in the face. What was it all for?

Arrived 3 hours early for my flight and I still have 2 hours 45 minutes to go. Frick!

If you have ever travelled on a plane then you definitely know how much time is wasted at airports. More so if you are in transit. Our most recent long haul journey from Auckland to Edinburgh was a touch over 37 hours with stops in Melbourne, Brunei (10 hours!), Paris and London. Spent more time at airports than in the air.

Not to mention that once you have seen one airport you have seen them all. Sure some airports are on a different scale. Singapore versus Paris comes to mind. But generally most are similar.

Waiting lounges with butt numbing plastic seats, queues that Apple groupies waiting for the next iPod would hate and everything is ridiculously overpriced. How can a McDonald’s burger be more expensive at an airport?

To beat the boredom and turn your airport frown upside down here are a few tips to keep you amused:

Blogging

If you need to kill time why not catch up on all those posts you have been meaning to write? I have at least 20 different posts that needed to be finished off and we hardly ever get 2 hours to do nothing. In fact this post started at the airport while I actually thought up fun ways to pass my time.

Guerilla Marketing by Four Jandals at the airport

Guerilla Marketing

I can’t take the credit for this because I borrowed the idea off Keith at Velvet Escape. If you have a website or travel blog then head over to the bright lights of the gadget store. Use the laptops which generally have free WiFi to connect with us on Twitter and Facebook before changing the preferences to set your website as the homepage.

Perfume and nice smellies

Before taking-off make sure that you are not one of those nose-curdling travellers that makes your fellow passengers breathe through their mouth. You know all those expensive perfumes you see with exotic names being paraded around by ridiculously good looking models? Well now it’s time to smell like them. Just don’t use the roll-on…

Free alcohol testers

Unless you are flying at an ungodly hour, most of the duty free stores will have free alcohol taste testing. Usually it will only be a small shot but remember that over-packed suitcase you are wheeling around? Just change your outfit and go nuts.

Magazine reading

Love your goss? Then turn into one of those really annoying people that shopkeepers loathe by sticking your nose into a good old magazine. Or pick up some travel photography tips from one of the technical mags.

People watching

Our last airport boredom buster and my personal favourite is just watching those around you. Who are they? Where are they going? Who are they travelling with? I love making up stories about them. Is that guy and girl (who is young enough to be his daughter) related or are they running away on a “business” trip together?

Failing all that just watch the raw emotions at the arrival or departure gates because they really are heart warming. Tears of joy as passengers arrive into the arms of missed loved ones or sorrow as they wave goodbye through the glass panels.

See you at the airport (just don’t delete our blog off the homepage)!

What are your favourite boredom busters?

Cole is one half of New Zealand's leading adventure travel blogging couple who have been wearing out their jandals around the world since 2009. He loves any adventure activities and anything to do with the water whether it is Surfing, Diving, Swimming, Snorkeling or just lounging nearby on the beach. You can follow Cole on Google+. Or consider following us via RSS Feed, Twitter, Facebook and subscribe to our Newsletter.

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25 Comments

25 Comments

  1. Jesse

    December 9, 2011 at 9:23 AM

    My own Boredom Busters:
    Taking random photos of everything that caught my eye.
    Definitely Music or Music Videos On my Phone
    Imagining about things or coming up stories in my head.

    • Cole and Adela (fourjandals)

      December 10, 2011 at 11:58 AM

      Love the idea of coming up with stories in your head haha. Thanks for the other tips, we just brought a new camera so I have been taking loads of photos. Some of the best ones are random but work well. Cheers

  2. bronwen burmester

    December 9, 2011 at 5:36 PM

    People watching is my fave thing to do at airports – and I admit to plastering my face with anti wrinkle cream and smelling like a walking pharmacy!

  3. Nomadic Samuel

    December 10, 2011 at 2:12 AM

    LOL, I thought I was the only one who bummed free samples all the time 😛

  4. Raymond @ Man On The Lam

    December 10, 2011 at 2:31 AM

    I am SO using that guerilla marketing technique!! 🙂

  5. Amanda Kendle

    December 17, 2011 at 1:40 PM

    I love the guerilla marketing technique too! Kind of like an author who puts their books in the best spot on the shelf. I must remember it 🙂
    I also haunt the samples/freebies and generally moisturise both hands and face from samples (great when you’re about to get on a dry plane).

    • Cole and Adela (fourjandals)

      December 18, 2011 at 1:05 PM

      The moisturizing is a good idea. Adela is always using the perfumes to smell nice. Good luck with the guerrilla marketing next time you travel!

  6. Tawny- Captain and Clark

    December 19, 2011 at 4:28 AM

    Hahaha the guerrilla marketing is awesome. We’ve done that before in an electronics store in Korea. We are also guilty of “freshening up” with perfume samples. It’s always nice to smell fancy when you’ve been traveling for hours!

    • Cole and Adela (fourjandals)

      December 19, 2011 at 10:33 AM

      Thanks Tawny! Would love to know if anyone ever saw our site on the airport computers and became a fan.

  7. Anji

    January 2, 2012 at 12:51 PM

    I find the guerrilla marketing tactic quite hillarious! It actually would be an interesting way connecting to travelers! People observing is definitely something I quite enjoy to do… but recently I’ve tried talking to as many people as possible! People are a bit startled at first, but its fun!

    • Cole and Adela (fourjandals)

      January 2, 2012 at 4:11 PM

      Thanks for the input Anji. Haha I think we would be a be put off as well if someone random talked to us but would quickly warm to them 🙂

  8. Ed Rex

    January 11, 2012 at 3:21 PM

    Haha! Love the guerilla marketing technique. Perhaps there should eb a page where people can say where they’ve spot another person’s blog?

    Other boredom busters:

    1) Massage chairs!
    2) Play the ‘who do I want to sit next to’ game at the gate
    3) Look at the departures board and imagine which flight you would spontanteously love to get on to.
    4) People watching – if you are with a friend, talk in stupid voices to convey what the people might be thinking.
    5) Bring a laptop and read FOUR JANDALS! ( 😛 )

    • Cole

      January 11, 2012 at 4:09 PM

      World domination from bloggers at airports. I like it! Have always wanted to just show up at an airport and take the next flight. Not sure that it would be very cost effective though.

  9. Caro from Passport and a Toothbrush

    April 12, 2012 at 1:07 AM

    Guerilla marketing + free alcohol sampling = GENIUS! You two ever considered ruling the world? Great post!!

    • Cole Burmester

      April 12, 2012 at 9:32 AM

      Haha we are working on taking it over one jandal at a time!

  10. Simon

    August 13, 2012 at 10:57 PM

    Guerrilla marketing is a genius idea! Wish I had thought of that during my 8-hour stop over in Singapore’s Changi Airport; then again no-one could ever get bored at that airport…

    • Cole Burmester

      August 14, 2012 at 2:26 PM

      Singapore airport is brilliant! So much going on.

  11. Drew

    September 16, 2012 at 10:28 PM

    This will come in handy, as I’m going from Malabo (Equatorial Guinea) to Auckland via Addis Ababa and Bangkok in November. It’s going to be a crusher of a trip, and I’m trying to figure out how to make it more interesting. Perhaps you could suggest some “challenges” to do…how many people I can talk to, how much free stuff I can get, etc. Maybe I could pretend to be doing interviews.

    • Cole Burmester

      September 17, 2012 at 9:39 AM

      Might see you in Auckland. I am headed back for a few weeks in November as well. Not sure of what “challenges” I could set. But let us know if you come up with any other boredom busters!

  12. George

    November 16, 2012 at 10:32 AM

    Who knew that watching films was so old fashioned. Love the tips 🙂

  13. True Nomads

    April 19, 2013 at 10:59 PM

    Guerrilla marketing! Why didn’t I think of that?? I use to do that at my university, but now I have a new mission! Before now, I would sleep until the last second… But no more!

    • Cole Burmester

      April 19, 2013 at 11:30 PM

      I struggle to sleep at airports so this is a great time waster 😀

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Adventure Travel

Hammock vs Tent Camping

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Camping with a hammock is slowly but surely becoming more popular in recent years with new and improved hammock designs being preferred by some campers, compared to the traditional tent.

In this article we will discuss some of the key benefits and drawbacks of sleeping without a tent, and analyze key criteria so that you can choose your preferred shelter choice!

Weatherproof

Most tents work well in the rain; however, you’ll need to bring a tarp if you’re using a hammock. Traditional hammocks are not waterproof, and are generally open at the top, allowing water to find itself inside if you don’t have an adequate tarp. Moreover, a decent under quilt is also a good idea so that you can stay warm and cozy during cold and stormy nights.

Packing up your hammock after a long night of rain isn’t too bad, whereas packing up a soaking wet tent is always annoying. You almost always get wet in the process.

Setup

For first time campers, pop-up tents are the simplest to setup. All you need to do is find flat ground, and bam, your setup is complete! The beauty of pop-up tents is that you don’t need to worry about figuring out where to insert the poles and erect the tent. Although, traditional tents are usually more robust, and have a longer life span.

Essentially, a tent is simple, but a hammock can become a little more complicated for first timers. You’ll need to find 2 trees facing a good direction and tie each end of the hammock to them. If your hammock setup is too tight, you will generally wake up with sore ancles, but if it’s too loose, you run the risk of the hammock touching the floor, and insects crawling in with you.

If your campground doesn’t have many trees, or if the trees are dead (they could break and injure you), hammock stands come to the rescue! Basically, hammock stands allow you to pitch a hammock if there are no trees nearby. They are portable, adjustable, and are easy to setup. The only drawback is that the ground should be relatively flat, whereas if you were to hang a hammock between 2 trees, there won’t be any stands touching the ground, so a rocky floor wouldn’t be a problem.

Comfort

One of the main reasons for choosing a hammock is the comfort that it provides you! It has a basically has in-built seat which is arguably more comfortable than a standard blow up mattress. You need to pick your tree’s wisely though! You don’t want a pinecone falling on your face mid-sleep.

If you have constant back pain and find it hard to sleep inside tents, you should give hammocks a try as they cause you to sleep sideways, similar to a banana shape, which a lot people find much more comfortable.

Price

Hammocks are usually lighter and don’t include a wealth of poles and gear that tents do. Depending on the type of hammock that you purchase, they are usually quite similar to tents. You can however, find very cheap tents <$60, but they most likely won’t last long.

A good tent or hammock can cost between $200-500 without accessories. If you need a hammock stand, that will add to your cost, just like a mattress and other tent necessities will to its cost.

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Adventure Travel

Yacht Charter Destination Of The Month: The Middle East

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Mysterious and exotic, the Middle East is full of surprises, blending fascinating cultural heritage with stunning contemporary architecture. What’s more, with guaranteed sunshine and warmth, the winter months of November and April are the perfect time to visit. That’s why we’ve made the Middle East our yacht charter destination of the month.

What makes the Middle East such an exciting yacht charter destination?

Dubai: Glamour and shopping

An ideal starting point for your luxury yacht charter, Dubai is famous for its tax-free designer shopping, five-star resorts and world-class gastronomy. Thrill seekers can head into its vast desert for four-wheel-drive adventures across the dunes, while families will love the Dubai Aquarium and Underwater Zoo, Legoland, or the magnificent water park at Atlantis on The Palm.

Abu Dhabi: Art and architecture

Neighbouring Abu Dhabi offers a more relaxed yacht charter destination – here, lovers of art and architecture will appreciate the iconic Louvre Abu Dhabi, which boasts some 9,200 m2 of galleries within its striking contemporary design.

The Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque is one of the world’s largest, and its open-door policy encourages visitors from around the world. The elegant Qasr Al Hosn museum, former home of the ruling family, is Abu Dhabi’s oldest standing structure, and displays artefacts dating back to 6000BC.

Oman: An understated gem

The understated, hidden gem of the Middle East, yacht charter destination Oman has an abundance of natural beauty, from spectacular mountains and wind-blown deserts to a pristine coastline.

At its northernmost tip, visit the red-hued fjords of the Musandam Peninsula. Action-seekers can admire the rugged Al Hajar mountain range by microlight, while land-based activities include desert sand-boarding, jeep rides and quad biking.

Capital city Muscat is steeped in history, with centuries-old souks where you can pick up fine pashminas, spices and frankincense, or even dazzling jewellery in the Gold Souk.

The Kingdom of Bahrain: Home of diving

It is said that diving was invented in Bahrain, and pearl diving is considered the quintessential Bahraini experience. Expect to find up to 30 types of coral and over 200 species of fish, too, making this yacht charter destination ideal for underwater enthusiasts.

Bahrain’s rich trading history is palpable in the Qalat al-Bahrain fort and museum, a registered UNESCO world heritage site. The Bahrain National Museum, found next to the Art and Cultural Centres, blends cultural heritage with contemporary ambience. Or, to indulge in some retail therapy, enjoy a traditional shopping experience at the Manama Souk, selling natural-oil perfumes and incense, fabrics and handicrafts.

The Red Sea: Reefs, diving and beaches

The Red Sea is another popular Middle Eastern yacht charter destination due to its year-round sunshine, warm water, coral reefs and incredible dive sites, including one of the world’s best wreck dives, the WWII British cargo ship SS Thistlegorm. In the south, the relatively undiscovered Marsa’ Alam promises incredible shore or beach diving around its natural fringing reef.

Mysterious, timeless and alluring, the Middle East is a yacht charter destination full of contrasts and surprises. Better still, it’s best visited in winter. What are you waiting for?

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Adventure Travel

Hiking Adventures in Bryce Canyon National Park

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If you are on the lookout for the perfect environment for an adventurous and challenging hike, look no further. Located in the Southern Utah region is the best park that is most suitable for your hiking adventure, the Bryce Canyon National Park. This is a great option to relaxed after you are through playing in $5 minimum deposit casinos.

This park hosts hike lovers from time to time and people even come from other countries in the world to experience the wonder of this park. The landscape and beautiful trails make this a choice venue. There is a rental service at this location if you love to stay behind.

You can enjoy the priceless glimpse of the sunrise and sunset from the different landscape. The part also permits visitors to create traditional camps at different locations for a more adventurous experience.

There are a couple of trails that you can choose from for your hiking adventure, and no matter your level of experience in hiking, you will find a track that matches your taste. Even if you are totally new to hiking, there is something for you at the Bryce Canyon National Park . Below is a list of some of the trails to try when you take a trip to this park.

The Rim Trail

This is the most accessible trail at Bryce Canyon National Park. It is suitable for those who just want to have a good time walking around and savoring the magnificent scenery of the park. From any part of the park, you can connect to this trail as it goes all the way around the park.

When lodging at the Bryce Canyon Lodge, it is a good idea to start your hike from the place known as the sunrise point. Just as the name implies, if you wake up early to start your walk, you’ll be able to watch the sunrise. If you have a camera with you, you’ll take some fantastic pictures.

Also, you’ll get a clear view of the Bryce amphitheater from this point. Just like in an adventure movie, you have to find a way to link up to boat Mesa, and on your way, you walk through some sites like the Mormon temple and Queen garden. This hiking trail is easy, and all you have to deal with is a total of approximately 200 feet elevation. You will surely have a nice time on this trail.

Navajo Loop Trail

On the order of difficulty, this trail comes next after the rim trail. The starting point of this trail begins from the sunset point around the southern area of the Bryce Canyon Lodge. Just like for the rim trail, the trail presents a nice view of the sunset, and with a good camera, you’ll be able to take exciting photo shoots.

Walking this route involves a visit to the Silent City, which is an aesthetic combination of limestone and urban expansion. During the hike, you will also walk through Wall Street, which happens to be a distinctive attraction at the Bryce Canyon park. You won’t ever want to miss the narrow walls. From this point, you may decide to go back to the sunset point or take other shorter hikes like the Peekaboo loop trail and Queen garden trail. Both routes are challenging and adventurous, but you will enjoy every bit of the challenge. After you have done this, you can then go ahead to have some fun in a $5 minimum deposit casino.

Mossy Cave Trail

This Trail presents an entirely different sight than the one that we have previously mentioned. From this trail, you will be able to catch the view of the towers in the park nearby without descending to the amphitheater. This hiking course begins at approximately 4 miles from the entrance to the Bryce Canyon park. However, if you visit this park and would like to enjoy something completely different from the other common tracks, then this is an exciting hiking trail for you to try.

Hiking is more than a walk, it is a fun and adventurous experience. All trails at the Bryce Canyon National Park are worth trying on your next visit. Whether you seek to have some fun or you just want to catch some beautiful scenery and feel close to nature, you will find the right place that suits you. Get ready to have an amazing hiking experience.

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Meet Cole and Adela

Cole and AdelaWe have been wearing out our jandals (Kiwi for flip-flops) on our travel adventures around the world since 2009. We think our blog is thought provoking and a little witty. But we have been proven wrong before. Find out more about us here...

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