This post was sponsored by Amazon as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central.
No matter where I travelled, whether it was away for a weekend trip or a vacation to Europe, I would always bring a minimum of three books and my laptop with me so I could have plenty of entertainment on long travel days.
Traveling can make me a bit anxious, and although I have a handful of coping techniques (let me know if you’d like a blog post on this!), I’m always terrified I will be left without something to read or something to do. Keeping busy is just one way I cope with my nerves.
After a few trips like this, I realized this wasn’t a practical way to travel. I would come home with precious room in my suitcase taken up by books I didn’t get to read. And I was always worried about my laptop being stolen or that something catastrophic would happen to it.
Instead, I had to find other ways to entertain myself while traveling.
I love journalling when I travel. It’s such a sweet way to keep track of your memories (like the time I got to Iceland and didn’t have anywhere to stay).
I also use it to jot down thoughts and things I notice about the place I’m visiting (like how every breakfast I had in New Zealand had half a tomato with it).
It’s fun to look back over my journals when my trips are over and remember things I had since forgotten.
If I’m not sure what to write down, here are a few journaling prompts I turn to:
- Did I try anything new today?
- Was there anything that made me uncomfortable?
- What was the funniest thing that happened today?
- Did I learn anything new about my travel style?
- What did I learn about the place I’ve traveled to?
It’s cool to write down thoughts about your day, but sometimes you just have nothing to say or you’re starting to feel repetitive. When that happens, use these prompts!
I also like to collect postcards and stick them in my journal and write them while I’m on the plane. It’s handy too because you have your journal full of tidbits to write home about!
2. Read or watch TV and movies.
I like variety and choices when it comes to my entertainment. What if I don’t actually want to read any of the books I brought with me?! What if I’m tired of seeing the same shows over and over again on the plane? That’s exactly why the Amazon Fire tablet was the perfect solution to my traveling woes–having everything I love and tons of options on one device is a total game-changer.
The Fire tablet has 7 hours of battery life, which is pretty great. It also is easily charged via USB cable which many planes have the ability to charge these days (and you can use a car charger to do the same thing if you’re on a road trip).
If you’re an Amazon Prime Member (get a free 30 day trial here), the Amazon Fire has a feature called “On Deck” which downloads a few movies and the first episodes of Amazon Original Series when you’re not using the Fire. This is insanely cool because if you forget to download something before you lose WiFi–you have nothing to worry about! There are already things to watch on your device. (If you’re not a Prime Member, you get the first episodes of Amazon Original Series).
It also has expandable storage (up to 128 GB via microSD card) and you get free cloud storage for your photos taken with the Fire tablet. If movies or TV aren’t your thing or you’re traveling with kids, you’ll also have access to a selection of premium games and other apps that are free.
My favorite feature is Blue Shade (pictured above in a dark hotel room)–it removes the blue light from your backlight device so it’s easier on your eyes. I usually read before bedtime so I love using this at nighttime on planes and if my traveling companions are already asleep in hotels.
3. People watch.
People watching–even when I’m not traveling–is one of my favorite things to do. People watching isn’t about staring in a creepy, uncomfortable way; it’s about noticing the little things, the tiny habits that make us human.
Some of my favorite places to people watch are airports. You never know where people are going or why they’re traveling. You don’t know what they’re going through, what’s waiting for them on the other side of their flight.
When we’re traveling, we’re in a state of flux. Travel, by plane, train or car, is hardly predictable. Anything can happen, for any reason. We’re all just trying to get from one place to another. You get to see people on their way to vacation, which may be the happiest time they’ve had in years. Conversely, they could be on their way to a funeral, experiencing unexpected heartbreak.
People watching can not only entertain you, but give you something deeper to ponder. And that’s what makes travel so great, isn’t it?
I’ve been lucky enough to go on long haul flights, week long road trips, and to even experience travel delays. Knowing that I can keep myself entertained on the road not only helps me with anxiety but also makes it easier to travel.
What’s your favorite way to stay entertained on long travel days?