Throwback to the time your suitcase weighed in at 49.9 lbs and you realized that, yes, miracles do happen.
The security line scramble
As you’re waiting in line, one of the security agents starts to announce reminders of what’s allowed in your carry on. You start to run through a list in your mind: did your hand sanitizer make it into a ziplock bag? Can your phone stay in your backpack? Is there anything in your pockets, do you need to take your jacket off even though it’s more of a sweater? Hold on, is that an inch of water left in your water bottle? Better take care of that—okay, now you’re ready.
The passport face
This is the awkward two-seconds of eye contact you make with the TSA agent checking your passport as you try to make your face appear as much like your photo as possible (even though that photo was taken five years ago, and you were having a really, really bad hair day, plus you’re not smiling so it sort of looks like a mug shot).
Delayed flight drama
Scenario 1: your flight has been delayed due to snow, which means by the time you land in Airport X you’ll only have a 20-minute layover…and the gate of your connecting flight is on the opposite side of the airport, so you’ll definitely be getting a workout and you sprint from one plane to the next. Or you could get one of those nifty motorized suitcases.
Scenario 2: Your flight was delayed, so now for the next six hours you’ll just have to hang out at your gate and battle for a spot at the much-coveted charging station. If your flight was canceled, you find yourself in the tricky scenario of spending the night in the airport (trust me, not fun) or getting a hotel room.
Shaking your head at the overpriced snacks
$9 for a teeny bag of chips seems, um, excessive. So does a $12 sandwich, and $7 fruit cup. Why do airports do this to us? If you can, packing your own snacks—such as granola bars, trail mix, apples, and pretzels—is the way to go to save some cash.
The carry-on shove
You’re on a crowded flight and your carry on bag (aka your survival kit) refuses to lodge itself in the overhead bin. Oh great, you’re going to be that person who holds up the line. It takes a couple of tries and some serious willpower, but you finally manage to make it fit. Success!
The fed-up toddler
You make your way to your seat on what’s about to be a seven hour flight when you see a family with a screaming baby in the row behind you. No. Why? How is this happening? No one is thrilled when a crying, unhappy toddler is onboard, but honestly, traveling can be stressful for everyone—parents and babies included—and you can definitely relate. Good thing you brought headphones.
Thought about how great flying is
Flying on a plane is a privilege that you’ll never take for granted. While airports come with a unique set of experiences, it’s what has made so many of your traveling dreams possible. Settle into that window seat and enjoy the ride!