CNY 2020 – Day 2 – Airports

Living abroad, I spend a fair amount of time in airplanes, at airports and on long flights. Between long queues, lost luggage and rude co-passengers, I’ve really grown to hate flying.

We’ve managed to have our luggage misplaced a total of 4 times in the last 5 years…. It’s a horrible feeling

More than once we’ve nearly missed flights due to other passengers and poorly managed airports. So many people wait until the last minute to check in and then cut in front of everyone else so they don’t miss their flights. Those people suck. Please don’t be those people.

Crowds are bad enough. Crowds this size + people repeatedly cutting in front of you are much, much worse

Security is also a brutal point in the whole flying process. I am always very polite to the staff in that area, mostly because I know they control my fate… But I like to think I’m pretty well liked by security personnel as well because I simply follow the rules.

  • I don’t bring liquids and insist on drinking them before I’ll go through the rest of security
  • I pack all my electronics into an easily accessible part of my bag so I can get at them quickly.
  • I pack my miniature liquids and gels all together, so they can be easily retrieved
  • I don’t fly with belts, change in my pockets, excessive jewelry or difficult shoes (many airports require you to take them off)
  • I pay attention and hand over my passport when needed. I move through the queue aware of my surroundings…
  • I don’t bring half eaten sandwiches and burgers in my carry on
  • I don’t bring half drunk alcohol in my carry on

These are all things I’ve seen people do by the way… It shocks me how hard people make this for themselves. So many people don’t even pay attention to the line up. Dave and I always arrive with our bags half unpacked and ready to go.

Get yourself one of these bags. They’re a life saver

I get especially annoyed with other passengers when it comes time to board the plane. Getting stuck in an aisle while people struggle to get oversized bags into the overhead bins has got to be one of my biggest pet peeves. It’s like they’ve never flown before! Please don’t be this person!!!

Also annoying: people who come into the plain with bags and bags of duty free and shopping bags.
This guy hit me in the head with his bag about 4 times while be waited for people in front of him to get out of his way so he could store his back pack. No one is comfortable at this point in the process so please do what you can to make it easier!! Get your book and headphones out of your bag before you board. Move quickly and don’t stand in the aisle!

Once seated and ready to go, the next concern is always what sort of neighbour I’ll have. Yesterday, I sat next to a lady who seemed to be unaware that she had someone sitting on either side of her.

She took up her space and half of mine with her newspaper and kept bumping me with her wet bag of fruit. People are strange…

Dave also sat next to a weirdo. The man kept picking at his face and putting his dead skin on the ground. I’ve also seen people clip their nails in airplanes, pick their noses and in a couple of cases…spit on the floor….

I didn’t take this picture but I’ve seen airplanes this dirty. Especially on longer flights. I don’t understand how people would want to be surrounded by so much garbage!!

Dave and I are lucky enough to do a lot of traveling, and we’ve gotten better at it over time. I’m sure I ticked some people off on my first flights. So, if you’re reading this, and you do any of these things, please consider how your behavior effects everyone else’s experience.

Final tips:

  1. Be at the airport, standing in line to check in, 2 hours before your flight.
  2. If it’s a national holiday and lots of people are traveling, try and be there even earlier if possible.
  3. Pack smart! Don’t bring stuff that you know you can’t bring. They are going to take away your water bottle, so just save everyone the time and get rid of it before the lineup
  4. Put all your gels and liquids in a plastic baggie, together!
  5. Don’t wear knee high boots, excessive jewelry or difficult belts and don’t show up with pockets full of change and garbage. It slows everything down!
  6. Take out the stuff you want for the flight BEFORE you board the plane. Don’t wait until hundreds of people are waiting to get to their seat to retrieve your book from the depths of your carry-on abyss.
  7. Don’t go overboard buying duty free and other items at the airport. We all have to share that limited overhead space.
  8. Keep your stuff in your space. There isn’t a lot of room in the plane and I don’t want your newspaper hitting me in the face.
  9. Don’t leave a mess!
  10. Be nice to the cabin crew. They have to put up with this every day. They very well may be the most patient people on the planet.
Be nice! Airports suck for everyone!

We’re in Kuala Lumpur now! Many more posts to come!!