Wednesday, August 4, 2010

3 (Other) Things to Do on a Plane at Least Once

Article by Leslie W.

I’m gonna go ahead and get the obvious out of the way here. I know of a club and you find it some 5,000 feet or so in the air. And if we were making a list of things to do on a plane, I’d say joining this “club” is probably a universal choice. Moving past the obvious top-spot-getter, I can think of 3 other things that are on my list of things that everyone should aspire to do on a plane, at least once in their lives.

Fly 1st Class
Ah the good life. Who hasn’t looked longingly beyond the cotton curtain that separates the well-to-do from the rest of us poor schmucks? We fall into a restless sleep under a felt blanket with dreams of the lobster and leg room being bestowed upon the passengers in Business Class. For most of us, Coach is the norm. There’s no shame in it, flying is expensive, and the majority us are lucky to have raised enough funds to board the plane at all. But at least once, everyone should treat themselves to a little in-flight luxury. Personal attention, free booze and the chance to stretch out; it would be a nice change wouldn’t it? There’s something about riding in a limo that makes everyone feel like a rock star. Flying first class can definitely have the same effect. Sitting with the power players, can make you feel like one too. Everyone occasionally deserves a glass of fine wine, a gourmet meal, an expensive pair of shoes and a big cushy airplane seat. And when you arrive at your destination you’ll feel relaxed and maybe even empowered. Which is a hell of a lot better than you would have felt squeezed into a seat between a toddler and a creepy dude sleeping on your shoulder.

Make a friend
Normally I’m the first one to pass out, or at least pretend to, in order to avoid chit-chatting with the stranger I am now uncomfortably close to. But every once in a while, it’s fun to pretend I’m not completely anti-social and strike up a conversation with the person sitting next to me. I can see this being far more intriguing when the person in question happens to be attractive, but let’s not limit ourselves to chemically driven motives. Sometimes, it’s cool to talk to someone just to get their story. I know people who feel somehow compelled to extract a full bio from any poor traveler seated near them. But I don’t think that’s the norm. In fact I think most of us would feel more at ease Tweeting the stranger next to us rather than breaking the ice with a “Traveling for business or vacation?”. But before you jam in your ear buds and hide your face behind a Sky Mall. (Do you really need the silver plated tooth brush carrier?) Glance over at your seat partner and give a thought to extending a hello. Who knows, once you start talking you may look up to discover that your plane has landed and you’ve got a new friend.

Spend 12 hours
This is weird right? I know. But I don’t mean just sit there for 12 hours delayed in a terrible rainstorm. That would suck. No I mean fly for 12 hours. I know it still sounds crazy and I don’t think it’s the length of the flight itself that is the exciting part. It’s what flying for that long means. It means you’ve flown far, far form home. You’ve gone someplace that is not easy to get to for you. I think everybody ought to travel to a distant land at some point. If the idea scares you, that’s even more reason to go. Half a day on a plane is no joke either, it’s tough. And I think getting through that kind of extended travel makes you a little tougher too. Although ya know, if you’re gonna be flying 12 hours maybe that’s a good time to think about going first class.

Leslie is a writer for, a company that specializes in renting private jets. Unfortunately, she still spends most of her time eating peanuts in coach.

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  1. For the record, I have done the three things listed in this post, but I haven't done the one that was alluded to in the intro.

    Special thanks go out to Leslie for writing this week's post.

  2. I fly 1st class whenever possible (usually on holiday). There's so much less stress involved (both physically and emotionally) that it's worth the price to me.

  3. Mantic59- 2 questions.
    1. I assume this is when you are holidaying in Las Vegas, is this correct?
    2. Have you ever met Billy Idol on the plane? See: The Wedding Singer for context.

  4. I often travel cross country by a plane. I sometime I got so bored when we are flying. I am so glad that I found this post. This is going to be a big help for my travel.

  5. I have done the 3 things :-)

    Once on a trip from Denmark to China our flight was cancelled and we got rebooked on another plane.

    We got on the new plane and was received with champagne in business class. My friend and I was the only two persons there and we slept lying down across the seats during the night.

    Great Trip :-)