Travel Tips

11 Productive Things To Do Next Time You’re On A Plane

November 6, 2016

You’re thousands of feet up in the sky, sat belted in to a seat in a tin can, having to endure a few hours of sitting still, often without Internet nor entertainment. So what do you do to make the most of your time? Ahead, 11 of my favourite and most productive suggestions...


Write, write, write

I always find I’m most productive when I’m in transit (seriously, I should just work off of the Circle Line) so I always get my MacBook out and power through blog posts or pieces I have to finish.

Clear space on your phone

Gah, such a dull job but when is your phone not running low on storage space? Use your off-line time wisely and wipe those selfie outtakes…

Edit your photos

You’ve just been on holiday, took a million pics, and now they’re going to sit for weeks on your computer. Use your can’t-fall-down-a-rabbit-hole-on-the-Internet-time wisely and edit your pics. Cull all the outtakes so you’re left with  a banging good holiday album!

Make a to-do list

On my way home from a hol, my brain is always buzzing with all of the things I need to do. Make sure you pack a notebook in your hand luggage so you can make a thorough to-do list. Get home with a clear head and focus.

Write letters

When was the last time you found a spare 10 minutes to write a letter to your grandparents? Pack a pen and your favourite stationery and you’re golden. *Fave grandchild status obtained*


Yep, I am including sleeping on my productive things to do list. Because it totally is a productive use of time. I never get enough sleep in my usual day-to-day so love catching up on a few zzz’s/ passing the time on a long flight!

Watch or listen to something educational

What better use of time than to learn new things? Whenever I'm on a long haul flight with the great little backseat TVs, I always end up getting bored half way through the movies and getting engrossed in the documentaries instead — you know, the ones I'd never dream of watching anywhere else but up here in the sky. But it's those types of situs that leave you with the best weird facts and trivia. So next time you're boarding a flight, download a podcast or a documentary off of iPlayer so you can fill your brain with new knowledge.

Power through a puzzle book

Okay, this might sound like a mere time filler but actually, stats show puzzles are dead good for the brain — reduce dementia, improve concentration and all that. There’s also worth in embracing a little digital offline time. Arrow Words are my puzzle of choice but crosswords, Sudoku, all are good.

Make a goals list

Get pensive. Think about your goals for the next month, 3 months, year. It might sound a little hippy dippy, but when else do you get the chance to stop and really think about this sort of stuff?

Read the guidebook

What better way to get yourself even more excited for the holiday you’re heading off on than to get clued up with guidebook. I always take a guidebook away with me, so I can get an idea of the best sights to see, what things are where, and the history. It’s also worth reading the Practical Advice section if you’re headed somewhere culturally different.

Practice a little mindfulness

Finally, give your brain a little love with a spot of mindfulness — that being the idea to not zoom through your thoughts at a million miles an hour, but instead taking time to slow the pace, focus on one thing at a time (its colour, its form, its purpose), to ultimately de-stress and calm the nervous system. Hippy dippy maybe, but effective.

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