When you’re embarking on an amazing holiday to far-flung destinations such as Australasia, the last thing you might plan is how to entertain yourself on the flight. With Qantas’ direct flight from London Heathrow to Perth, now the fastest route to Australia, there are plenty of things you can do to occupy your time. As it’s such a significant part of your journey, enjoy our tips for the best things to ensure you enjoy every minute onboard…
Keep a Journal
1. Keep a journal of your trip, particularly the finer details. Words are so much better than pictures to remind you precisely what was going on during your trip. Write a serious review of your airline food, just as you would do with a five star restaurant. Remark on the facilities in your airport, describe the friendly Aussie crew on your flight and the tips they had for when you arrive. In years to come, these tiny moments will fill in the gaps of all the amazing things you experienced.
Listen to a podcast
2. Listen to a podcast and up-skill yourself. By the time you arrive at your destination, your knowledge base will have improved considerably. Or, if this isn’t the case, then podcasts can also soothe you to sleep. Most narrators are chosen for their calming voices. Listening to them at low level will likely block out even the quietest of aircraft hums, even from the super quiet Qantas Dreamliner, quickly transporting you to the land of nod on the tales they tell.
3. Give yourself a personal spa treatment before you doze off – both men and women. Freshen-up, remove make up, add a gentle moisturiser – in general, pamper yourself. Make the most of the Qantas amenity kits onboard with moisturisers and toothbrush kits. Change into comfortable clothing, soft slippers and soothing socks, plus that go-to hoodie that’s perfect for cosying into and blocking out unwanted light. Blow up your neck pillow, take out your eye masks from the handy amenity kit, nestle your feet into the foot rest nets, and enjoy hours of uninterrupted sleep. If you’re lucky enough to be in Business then you can even get comfy in the famous Qantas pyjamas!
Smarten up your smart phone
4. Delete unnecessary files on your smartphone to free up more storage space. This sounds simple, but it’s one of those jobs best saved for moments of downtime, such as a flight to Australia. It’s amazing how long the actual process of deleting files, images and videos takes, not to mention uninstalling apps you thought you needed, but never used. By the time you land, you and your smartphone will be equally refreshed – ready for holiday snaps of your amazing destination!
Add inspiration to your journal
5. In your journal, jot down your top 10 film quotes from Hollywood movies. See if there are any classic travel quotes, such as this one from Ferris Bueller’s Day Off: ‘Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.’ Or this one from Into the Wild: ‘The core of man’s spirit comes from new experiences.’ See how many of the quotes you can find from the extensive Qantas catalogue of movies and boxsets.
Discover more about the aircraft
6. Become a plane geek - discover as much as you can about the aeroplane you are flying on; top speed, altitude ceiling, that sort of thing. Enlist the aid of the cabin crew and you’ll discover lots of insider knowledge. Did you know, for example that if you wanted to buy your own Boeing 787 Dreamliner it would cost you £109,938,730, give or take a few pounds? Did you also know that the Dreamliner uses a filtration system that over the course of its non-stop flight to Perth, helps to reduce headaches and fatigue allowing you to arrive without jetlag? Every day is a school day!
Binge on a boxset
7. Watch an entire TV season in one flight. Relevant if a friend recommended you watch it, but you never got around to taking their advice. Understandable, as some mini-series take time to get into, but if there’s one thing you’ve got plenty of on a non-stop flight to Australia, it’s time. If you plan it correctly and watch an episode every other hour, by the time you land you’ll be up to speed and able to join in water cooler discussions at work when you return. Of course, you can also fill your time with Qantas’ own entertainment library containing over 1,000 hours of in-flight entertainment. Download the handy app here to find out more.
Chat to fellow passengers
8. See how many new friends you can make while taking a wander around the aircraft. Most people are receptive to a bit of light conversation on a long flight. Chances are you’ll have something in common with some of your passengers, perhaps you’re from the same town, or going to the same place, or they might have been there before and can give you some useful tips about where to go and what to see. The skies the limit here (excuse the pun). If you travel to meet new people, why not start with your fellow passengers and cabin crew?
Breakout the playing cards
9. Play International Sh*thead – the universal card game that every nation knows – and if they don’t know, show them. Hey, and I didn’t make up the name either; this is how it’s known worldwide. (A little research here also reveals that its call Shed or Palace, but I’ve never known anyone to call it that). I’ve played this game everywhere from London to Lombok and everyone knows variations on the rules: eight means miss a go and two means pick up two, black jack cancels the pack and so on. Just lower the eating tray, deal the pack and the last person to get rid of all their cards is the aforementioned #£@%head! One game lasts 40 minutes and it’s easy to grasp whether young or old.
Get colourful with a colouring book
10. Complete a double page of an intricate colouring book. Take your time here, some of these useful stress-busters have detailed illustrations that require some thought. With a small selection of colouring pencils you can create a masterpiece to be proud of. It will fit neatly into your travel journal too and add some much needed colour. Your fellow passengers will look on in appreciation, often making suggestions for where the next colour should go. This is a great way of reminding your digits they are useful for more than creating excel spreadsheets or tapping on your smartphone screen.
Catch up on work
11. Work! And not because you need to. (I can see raised eyebrows at this suggestion, but wait, I’m serious). This is one of the few environments you will ever get hours of focused work done without interruptions from texts, emails, meetings and phone calls. This is best achieved on a tablet which can be shoved away and forgotten about for the rest of your journey. (I’m writing this blog on an IPad Mini as I speak). These devices don’t take up much room and they have useful apps to make things easy. Plan that presentation. Write that proposal. Create that graphic. Released from the stress of deadlines you’ll create your best work.
Research your destination
12. Research the place that you’re going to in more detail – read that guide book to find gems of information you might have missed previously. There might be a restaurant or street food market you’d like to dine at, or essential information about museum opening times that you missed. Close attention to the details will ensure a tight itinerary stays in schedule, or you could discover more cultural facts that previously escaped your attention.
Relax and meditate
13. Do some work on yourself – a long haul flight to a holiday destination is a good place to meditate. This is especially helpful if you’re travelling on a special occasion with loved ones. It will help you to be in the present and remember that the rules of home don’t apply; as such you can be who you want to be when you’re on holiday, as opposed to the person you have to be. Release tension, unwind and relax. You’ll enjoy your journey so much better when you leave your cares and worries behind.
14. Make something. With your hands. In the olden days, this would entail two knitting needles and a ball of wool, or a model aeroplane and some fiddly glue. The message here is key – do something with your hands that results in a tangible item. Call it a memento of your flight. Being able to place the final stitch in a piece of embroidery, or creating a simple friendship bracelet with a few bits of string, or mastering swan origami figures is a simple but very effective way to pass the time.
I hope you enjoyed these suggestions. Happy landings!