The Art of Waiting in Airports – An OFW Guide

You got the OFW contract and now you’re at the NAIA waiting with bated breath for your flight out. And waiting. And waiting some more. You twiddle your thumbs, you rock your feet, and you fidget. And you’re still waiting. If you’re an OFW, waiting at airports during boarding and stopovers will be an experience you can’t get out of. Don’t worry, let me be your guide and I’ll teach you the art of waiting in airports.

Take advantage of the amenities

Waiting Airports OFW Guide
It’s not taxable if it’s Duty Free!

First of all, take advantage of the amenities, i.e. the free WiFi and most especially, the Duty Free shops. Think of it as a spa day. In detail, try out the cleansers, the toners, the serums, and the moisturizers of the high-end cosmetics. In that order, please (yes, guys, this is also for you- you’ll find cosmetics have a line just for you). Don’t forget the perfume testers! It sounds totally sly, but hey, you’re trying them out. You’ll be able to afford them, their friends, and this duty free shop, too! Look around and dream of the time you’ll be able to afford them all. Take a mind’s picture and look at it as an inspiration when the going gets tough.

Mind your hand-carry

Waiting Airport OFW Guide
Make sure you can identify your luggages at a glance

Do check out your airlines’ restriction on hand-carry sizes (and check-in, of course) before your flight. With this in mind, most airlines allow up to 7 kilos of hand-carry plus a bag or a laptop bag. Don’t be tempted to max out that allowance. Ignore your Lola Pedring and your neighbor Bheybhey. More is not better in this case. It’s important to realize that anything you carry, you will need to carry everywhere, even into the toilets. Don’t be that fool who entrusts their luggage with a “kind” stranger.

A good hand-carried luggage would ideally be a pull-along with rollers. Yeah, looks totally pretentious. But until you’ve walked a kilometer concourse carrying a duffle bag, you won’t appreciate what a godsend a pull-along is. Then you can add in that small backpack if you absolutely need to. If you’re the minimalist type and have resisted all your relatives’ efforts to bring your house with you, maybe you can get away with a backpack.

Checklist is a must

Waiting Airport OFW Guide
Hang your checklist where you can add to it as you go

Do a checklist on what you will bring with you days before packing. Choose what will go into your check in baggage, and what will go into your hand-carried one. Add things onto it as you remember it. Check it off as you go pack, that way, you’ll be sure not to miss anything. What needs to go into your hand-carry for example:

  • wet wipes, facial tissues
  • two changes of clothes and undies
  • two hand towels
  • sanitizer
  • make-up for women
  • a small bar of soap
  • toothpaste and toothbrush
  • a universal charger/adapter
  • and if you have it, an extra battery

Invest in a malong and it can be your sleeping sack, your changing room, and your blanket all in one. The change of clothes is if, God forbid, your checked in luggage got lost or delayed. Make sure that any liquids you have is less than 100 ml and will all fit into a 1 liter Ziploc bag that can be had at the airport.

Bring your entertainment

Make sure to bring whatever will keep you entertained for hours. Books, apps, game apps, movies, magazines, and if the airport is generous, internet is a time-sucker. Most airports now provide Wi-fi connectivity so I don’t anticipate any issues except for your battery running out and your charger not fitting into the wall socket. That’s where your external battery and universal adapter will come in handy. Genius hack, eh? Now you’re ready for that interminable wait.

Picture attribution CC BY 2.0

meme photo from pesos and sense

flickr.com/regnatarajan

flickr.com/veruus

 

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