Most of us have experienced an unexpected delay or worse, the cancellation of a flight. You can choose to spend the time being miserable and complaining, or you can make the most of the delay by being productive during this dreadful time.
Getting Business Done
For a fee, many airlines offer one-day passes to their business lounges. If you don’t already have access through one of your credit cards or airline loyalty programs, a one-day pass is a great option. Business lounges provide access to wireless hot spots, fax machines, computers, data ports, and even desks! Prioritize your work and accomplish the most important tasks first. If you think you’re caught up, surely you have administrative tasks that you’ve been putting on hold for much longer than you should have. Chances are you also have phone calls to catch up on and the lounges provide many private areas for discussing confidential business information. While you wait, take on the necessary evil task of responding to piled-up emails sitting in your inbox. These unexpected delays at the airport are often the perfect opportunity to catch up. One more benefit of the lounge is unlimited food and beverage options are included.
If you just want to take advantage of your delay to catch a good nap or watch a movie, there are many lounges that are not associated with airlines such as The Centurion Lounges, The Club, Minute Suites and Escape Lounge. These private suites range from free access with an American Express card to about $50 an hour. They come equipped with a daybed sofa, sound-masking system, DirectTV, and high-speed internet. Pillows and blankets are provided and some lounges offer showers for an additional fee.
Plan for a Delay
While we don’t ever plan for a lengthy layover, we should. Have you ever found yourself unable to plugin to an outlet because it’s being occupied? Consider packing a small power strip that gives you the ability to share with others. Taking along an extra laptop battery is also highly recommended in the event you are unable to locate an electrical outlet. Saving important documents to a USB flash drive can also be beneficial in many ways. This gives you the ability to access documents that may not have been saved to your laptop, and many printers have the capability to print documents directly from your flash drive.
Other Ways to Kill Time
Perhaps your delay is much lengthier than you anticipated, and you have successfully accomplished all of your work and tasks. There are many things to do other than sitting in a chair being miserable. Strike up a conversation with someone around you. You never know when you may find the opportunity to create a new business relationship, so exchange business cards and contact information when you establish those occasional new relationships. Worried about missing your evening workout session? Many airports have added fitness gyms, yoga rooms, and even swimming pools that can be accessed for a small fee. Another option is to listen to a podcast. There are many business-related podcasts that can generate new ideas for growth and goals to set. While the focus of business travel is primarily to accomplish business related tasks, some of your personal tasks may get placed on hold. Pay bills, plan your next vacation, or call a loved one or friend to catch up.
Enjoy the Experience
Walk around the airport and explore. You may find unique dining experiences and shops to keep your mind occupied. Depending on the length of your delay, you may find free city tours, giving you the opportunity to sightsee and explore new territories. Of course, if all else fails, catch up on missed TV shows, watch a movie, read a book, listen to music, or even ride the terminal train and explore the airport.
Take advantage of the delay and get caught up on your work tasks. Always be prepared for the unexpected. Being prepared will ensure you remain productive during those unexpected delays. Once you arrive at your destination, you may even have a little more free time to relax. You just might even have your next family vacation all planned. You don’t have to spend your delay being miserable. There are lots of things to do all around you, so get busy!
Need a Ride?
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