The in-flight experience

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Ever since the wanderlust had risen from within me, the airports have gradually become my second home. Though it perhaps isn’t the most environment-friendly way of travelling, biking the distance can’t always be the answer either. Thus, many hours have been wasted away through booking, checking in and flying. Those who have flown anywhere before most likely know that it can be a stressful, everlasting and embittering experience. The horror when the sounds of a crying baby encroaches and at its peak the woman holding the little Mandrake pauses her shuffle and looks at the seat directly behind you. Mere minutes later, a heavy man seemingly having finished a marathon launches himself in the window-seat next to you before relieving his sweat-soaked feet from his old, scruffy shoes. Happens to be too, that his bladder is the size of a pebble. The seat on your other side soon gets filled by a man feeling talkative during your drowsy moments.

If any of that sounds familiar, I truly feel for you. I have entered a plane where half the passengers had doused themselves in bottles of perfumes turning it into a flight of fragrance fury. Once, the insides had looked like a war-zone upon landing with everyone’s garbage scattered everywhere. Smells, noises and indecent behaviours are a large part of the in-flight experience. It isn’t just the humans that can make it a hellish journey though! There have been budget airlines that only gave out two minuscule cups of water over eight hours and the stewardesses had disregarded my pleas and cries as I sat without a nickle or dime. AirAsia is not the only airline that can play Scrooge, as Lufthansa charged a hefty nine euros for anyone wanting a larger selection than the three movies offered. Had it been anything shorter than the twelve hours it was, I might have accepted that act of cheapskatery. During flights, restlessness is my biggest buddy, thus any type of mind-numbing entertainment is an absolute must. I remember having read the magazines and brochures over a million times during announcement.

Luckily, it isn’t all bitter and sour. At times, your economy flight turns into a near first class one as realisation sinks in that you won’t be needing to share the set of chairs. Travelling like a king with all the space you could wish for without any unwanted smells or conversing. Then there are the airlines that surprise you with complimentary snacks surprisingly appetising or alcoholic beverages to literally numb. Qantas Air had done so on flights as short as sixty minutes. Though my words on them may not be completely unbiased, as their flight had come straight after a compensation for a cancelled flight that had come in the shape of a hotel room far more lavish than I am used to. With a credit on their name, more than once room-service had come knocking on my door for the delivery of overpriced meals. It’s definitely true that the airline you choose to fly with is more than important as it can be the ruler of the journey there being a feast or a debacle.

Stay tuned for the second part! In the meantime, do you have any pet peeves during flights?