As someone who loves flying and still believes the romance and glamour of the aviation industry is alive and well I thought I would give some tips on how to travel in style…dutifully surmised into 10 key points.
1. Luggage is vital. Whether you are on a work or play trip having luggage that helps compartmentalise your shit and makes you look strong in the terminal is important. I just bought a Rimowa case and it makes me feel so powerful (and organised) I could usurp Kim Chi Moon from the United nations.
I also LOVE to micro organise my work and reading tools. These guys are simply the best and do a number of travel accessories
2. Dress accordingly. I still believe the experience of aviation is an experience…a thing of glamour to be enjoyed. However much you travel there is still nothing wrong with looking tight on the flight and utilising your temporary status as a cosmopolitan savant. Whatever you wear make sure your style game is on point, you never know who you might be sitting next to.
3. Security. Everybody knows what is expected of you at security. Do not be one of those bell-ends that holds the line up. Put all your pocket shit in your jacket and stick it in the container with your bag. Put your belt, laptop and any other electronics in the other container. Make sure you are primed to do this BEFORE you hit the check. Capiche?
4. Lounge access. I understand flying business or first for most people is ridiculous. It is for me at least. I always make sure however that I enjoy the accoutrements a terminal lounge provides; free booze and food, wifi and sanctuary from the three types of assholes that dominate terminal departure gates; Family seat hoggers, morning piss-heads and those fuckers that endlessly peruse Sunglasses Hut. If you fly cattle don’t fear – check out these guys to give you access.
5. Premium Economy. Following on from my previous point business and first is out of reach for most, but Premium Economy is pretty affordable these days and SO much better than cattle. If you’re doing anything other than sleep during the flight look into an upgrade…especially on long-haul. I got an upgrade on the Air Canada flight I am currently writing this on for £150. The stewardess even lay a napkin across my lap at lunch. Seriously. No brainer.
6. Headphones. This is obvious but absolutely worth noting; you need noise reducing shit-hot headphones to shut out the world on any flight. Music, podcasts, audiobooks, the in-flight entertainment system…all can be enjoyed with the proper tools. The Bose QuietComfort range are a pretty cost effective solution
7. Get pissed. If you are flying cattle then your only escape is to get drunk. Make friends with your steward/stewardess and make sure they ply you with as much booze as requested. Some of these guys can get annoyed but on most long haul flights you have paid a premium and are allowed as much as you god damn like! They can only close you down if they think you are a danger to yourself or other passengers so keep it friendly and keep it coming. One trick I like to do is to request booze for the two people sleeping next to me for when they wake…and then plough straight into it.
8. Always have a pen. It always amazes me how many times I am asked for a pen on flights. Sitting for hours with little to do can often spark something…an idea for your next novel…a clue in the hunt for Lord Lucan…an idea on how to enjoy your impending destination. Even if you are totally brain dead they are always good for filling out landing cards, so tool up. In the spirit of being a ponce go big with a Mont Blanc ball point like me
9. Overhead luggage. Ok another timing request. When you are exiting the aircraft have your overhead luggage shit ready. You have been stuck in a tube for how-ever-many hours with a bunch of strangers – everybody wants to get off as quickly as possible. Don’t mess around hauling your mums poncho from the locker just as its your turn to get the fuck off the plane. Get into the alleyways as soon as the belt sign is off and get your shit down.
10. Complain. I am not a big complainer…my girlfriend is. Its amazing some of the customer service improvements and deals you can get by showering a rain of shit on your aviation provider, especially when using a public platform like Twitter. She sees something she doesn’t like se can usually get it rectified within minutes. Speaking to friends who work for big brands it is universally recognised that they are shit scared of bad PR from the public, so use it.