Feb
18
2012

How to kill time in a boarding lounge – Maria Church is on her way!

And so the flight hopping begins. First to Toronto, then Minneapolis, onto Tokyo, then arrival in Singapore.

While I wait in boarding lounges I figure a bit of introductions are in order. Hi! My name is Maria. I am in my fourth year of journalism studies at Carleton University in Ottawa. I have a passion for the pen (though in modern terms I suppose that would be ‘a passion for the keyboard’. Loses the romance, no?) I consider myself a traveler though my adventures have been limited to North America and Europe.

I truly believe travel is an education. It may be motivated by an unhealthy addiction to adventure but the passion is sustained by a curiosity to know more about everything.

So why are Canadian students staying home?

My thoughts:
1) The elephant in the room; it is expensive. Now people will say this to no end, particularly students who have commitments like paying for school. But the truth is it is all about priorities. If you choose to spend your money on other things, you will simply not have any to spend on an extravagance like travel. There is nothing wrong with this. Where we choose to spend our money is a decision we all have to make regardless of age. Some are luckier than others and I’m sure there are some who really don’t have the option, but if you really really want it, almost anyone can make it happen.

2) Straight up, it’s scary. Putting bravado aside, facing the unknown is always scary. It is that gut wrenching feeling you get walking into something you have no control over. The same applies to boarding a plane if you have no idea what will happen when you land. It is scary and I feel it to some extent or another almost everytime I travel.

While it doesn’t take the fear away, these are some things I do before a big trip overseas that may help.
First, research. Always. Go to governemnt sites, google, wikipedia, anything. Reading up on the place can prepare you for a lot of the culture shock.
Secondly, pack smart. Fashion might seem frivolous but wearing the right clothes can not only put you at ease but it is also super important to respect the cultural dress code to avoid disrespect. For example, many places expect you to cover your shoulders in religious areas. Pay attention!
For you women travelers out there, I really like this site because it gives you advice country by country: journeywoman.com
Third, organize all documentation. I like to not only carry electronic and printed copies but also a notebook where I write out all important numbers such as for flights, travel insurance, passport, etc.

So these are just a few ideas. Perhaps you have heard them, perhaps not.
Either way, from the Toronto boarding lounge, I wish you happy future lounging youself!

 

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About the Author: Katie Idle

I'm a business woman and a travel junkie! I have always had a passion for travel and for experiencing new cultures. Brought up in England, I traveled Europe in my teens and early 20s. I have lived and worked on 3 continents; Europe, Africa and North America. I have traveled extensively worldwide both for work and for fun - and still can't believe how much of the world there is still to see!

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