5 Tips to Survive an Airport Layover

IMG_1338 This fall I’m going to be traveling an estimated 17,000 air miles. That’s a lot of airports, and flying out of Jacksonville, that’s a lot of layovers. There are a few things I pack to keep myself organize and entertained sane during an airport layover.

Here’s my list:

1. Gate Guru App

I won’t talk about an app unless I use it, and thanks to a US Air captain I’m hooked.  I am a big fan of Gate Guru. The folks at Trip Advisor developed it and it shows you what there is to eat (most importantly), local weather, a map of the airport, tips from other passengers, amenities, flights that are scheduled out of that airport and gate information. Pretty much it’s everything you need when you get to your destination in one little handy program. It’s truly brilliant. Check out Gate Guru here.

2. Power Cord

You will be a hero when you roll into an airport (like Philly) with a power cord. They have just a few plugs in the main terminal areas. If someone is using one of the plugs, ask if you can plug your power strip in and invite them to use your power strip. Crisis averted.

3. Back-Up Battery

You can get something that will cost you around $75 like an Mophie or a rechargeable unit from your local drug store or off Amazon. I use a power pack from Duracell that charges off my USB drive. It is good for a little over one charge and I charge it overnight after every use.

4. Notebook

I’m not talking about the Nichols Sparks novel, I’m referring to an actual little notebook. They come in handy for the folks whose mind that never shuts off (like mine) or for a to-do list when you get to your destination. Plus, as of now, we can’t use electronics — on take off, taxi or landing — so it gives you something to do if you don’t want to make mindless conversation with the stranger sitting next to you.

5. Gift Card

I always do my research when I am heading to an airport with a layover and pick up a gift card for a places that I will want to eat or get a coffee from. It helps because it makes me not want to buy a bunch of fatty airport food and keeps my budget under control. I keep the gift card in my backpack and don’t have to reach for my wallet. I get very paranoid when I pull my wallet out in airports. Not because of crime but because I’m clumsy and have dropped debit cards before.

These are just a few things I use in my arsenal of airport survival tools. What do you use when to help with layovers?

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