Traveling at this time of the year can be a bit challenging. The weather conditions, the security situation, and the airlines cutting costs and therefore trying to overfill flights can really make delays inevitable.
Two years ago, right after a snow storm, I got stuck in Chicago on the runway for 6 hours. We left our gate on time but then all the runways were closed. Immediately, another plane docked at our gate and and there were no other gates for us to return to. The pilot shuttled from the de-icing station to the waiting position and then back to the deicing station just trying to be ready in case they opened the runways again.
Because of this, the plane was always slowly moving which didn't allow the flight attendants to serve any drinks or food. I do have to admit, that although this took 6 hours followed by a long transatlantic flight, it was quite funny to observe the reactions of some passengers.
I'm sure that the lack of hydration and a low glucose balance let their anger and frustration raise by the minute but it was a great example of how feeling out of control and being unprepared combine to make a lethal emotional experience.
Luckily I was prepared, so I was able to not only cope but to actually still find some relaxation and do some work on the flight. But this experience did remind me of the need to religiously prepare for traveling. In fact, it led me to systematically create my own travel prep ritual.
So I thought I would share my list of "must haves" for any big flight. Besides my phone, laptop and work stuff I pack the following:
.01 a bottle of water to stay hydrated - I carry a minimum of one liter
.02 a bag with nuts, some bars and a tupperware with some veggie sticks or fruit - a perfect snack to make sure my glucose balance is right
.03 several packs of EmergenC - to boost my immune system
.04 a small bottle of disinfectant fluid for my hands - to fight all the bacteria
.05 a small first aid kit for minor blisters, cuts, and scrapes - accidents do happen
.06 my ipod with noise canceling headsets - loaded with both my favorite music and our Tignum soundfiles for jetlag and powernaps
.07 my earbuds - to reduce the noise around me and help me to concentrate on my work or let me sleep better
.08 my ebook reader- loaded with some business books and some fun books - half of my trip i always allocate for fun and recovery
Our dream is to someday develop and design our own suitcase/backpack to make this type of preparation easy. But until then, I'd love to know how do you prepare for your trips? Please share your tricks.
By Jogi Rippel
CEO // Founder