Reasons I Enjoy Flying

# The roominess of it all.
# The food.
# The idle time while standing upright.
# Duty-free shopping (clue me in here, does anyone actually take advantage of this?)
# Pre-completed Sudoku puzzles.
# “The elbow room”:http://www.simplebits.com/notebook/2005/04/18/elbow.html
# Month-old episodes of 60 Minutes.
# The comforting feeling of being in complete control.
# Free airport wi-fi.
# Adjustable air nozzles.
# Watching someone attempt to close the overhead bin at least 15 times before giving up and letting the attendant deal with it.
# Ear-popping fun.
# Cab rides.
# Quality reflection time.
# Fumes.

56 Comments

  1. Joshua Lane says:

    I enjoy the oh-so exciting luggage retrieval. Standing around for 15 minutes, then making a mad dash to grab your suitcase, almost knocking over an elderly woman… good times.

  2. Lise says:

    Don’t forget the joy of trying to get out of seat to go for a bathroom break when the person in front of you decided to lower their seat back!
    And the joy of sitting straight, two feet on the floor because you can’t cross your knees (good for the posture) and I’m 5’2″!
    I’m sure I’ll remember more :)

  3. Nick Toye says:

    The delays, next time i’m going to book a three day holiday in Manchester Airport and be done with it. The catering is great, the beer is cheap! and the accomodation is superb, just love those flight lounge seats.

  4. Martijn van der Ven says:

    After listening to your Ukulele song I added you to my RSS viewer.
    Great site you have here, love your coding!
    I’ll remember this one if I’d like to have fun on flying.
    Friendly Greetings,
    Martijn

  5. Erin says:

    All I can say is: JetBlue. (Flying JetBlue nixes items 2, 7 and 9 alone.)
    Best. Airline. Ever.

  6. Ryan Miglavs says:

    Portland’s PDX airport is much nicer than most, and does actually have free wifi. But then, that’s what our city is like. I travel a fair amount, but I’m still shocked that the rest of the world charges huge fees for the internet.
    I also love that a flight from Germany to Spain includes free beer (or whatever other drink you may like), but on a flight from Miami to Portland it costs $5. I think US airline companies rule.
    JetBlue has a lot of conveniences, but they have been the first to pony up whatever private information the US government asks for. Not cool to me.
    zefrank, a hilarious blogger of the video variety, doesn’t care for airlines either. Especially when they really don’t play nice. It makes me feel better to watch someone else’s misery and forget my own.

  7. Dave Simon says:

    [butthead]
    Huh huh huh Dan said “duty.”
    [beavis]
    Yeah! Doo-tee. Doo-tee. Free!
    I honestly hate flying. Maybe because I’m a big guy, I’m never comfortable. Maybe because, despite the knowledge that it IS safe, I get nervous every time we hit turbulence and break out in a cold sweat. Like Leftear said in the Italian Job, “I had a bad experience.”

  8. Jorgeq says:

    I strongly agree with you on the “reflection part”. Generally a time to reflect on aspects in our lives that we might take for granted.

  9. MMM says:

    Man, I usually love air travel, even with all it’s inconveniences, but now that they’re all listed in this entry, they seem a lot, and it is sort of turning me off it.
    I think I’ll remember reading this everytime I’ll have to fly somewhere.

  10. Add “The dry air” to the list!

  11. Amine says:

    If there is something that I like about flying, it must be the elbow space, nothing can beat it for me.
    #elbow-space{
    width: 0.9em;
    padding: 0px;
    margin: 0px;
    display: none;
    }

  12. Jason says:

    16. Incessant drone.

  13. Jason M. says:

    How about those great self-checkin kiosks. For me, something that saves even the smallest amount of time goes a long way in coping with the other items on your list.

  14. Shane says:

    I kind of like the suction toilets though.
    Am I weird?

  15. Bruce says:

    Don’t forget the ever-popular free lower back massage, courtesy of the kid behind you with legs just long enough and untrained enough to kick out of their own accord.

  16. Mark Figart says:

    The “free” airport wi-fi… ahhh, you’ve hit a sore spot. I had to create my own post on this one not too long ago, on a journey from Boerne, my home town, to the deep southern destination of Churchill Downs. Having been out of the airport scene now, thankfully, for the past 5 years or so, I was shocked to have to pay for something in a location where it seems criminal to charge for it. Geez, this just ain’t right.

  17. Steve Ganz says:

    #4 The guy sitting next to me on a flight from Seoul to San Francisco bought some jewelry for his wife from the duty free cart in a panic after he relaized he hadn’t gotten anything for her on his trip.
    The stuff looked great in the magazine, but boy was he dissapointed when he took it out of the box.
    Sorry, no refunds.

  18. rickfle says:

    I’m writing from ABQ…the guy sitting next to me is frantically surfing every airline site trying to resurrect his demolished routing (demolished, apparently by his own mouse carelessness). He can’t find a new flight; everyone is overbooked on this holiday weekend. Add to things not to like about flying: complicated airline websites that don’t let you go back to plan ‘A’ if you screw up.

  19. Daryl says:

    Stepping away from the sarcasm, the best part is sitting in the airport bar… I love random conversations with random people flying to/from random places.

  20. Picard102 says:

    I quite like the airplane food myself. That is when they have food, and I bring cash. What ever happend to meals with the purchase of the ticket. Damn cost cutters.

  21. Anura says:

    For me, flying became a drag after September 11 when they stopped letting people visit the cockpit – I’ve seen some great sights from up front!
    Add to the list:
    - cancellations,
    - connecting flights at opposite ends of the terminal with no time in between,
    - running into politicians (is nowhere safe?).

  22. Gabrusch says:

    I seem to be the only one who enjoys the food. Actually, I have to admit I love.
    And I’m still feel like a five year old kid between leaving the gate, driving along the taxi way, wait in the cue for takeoff ,the two seconds before of complete stop on the runway before the engines howl up. I have to sit on the window and watch everything. Same during the landing procedure.

  23. Chris says:

    I once saw a woman remove someone’s luggage from the overhead bin, set it on the seat below and proceed to replace it with her own bags. We all sat their staring, mouths open, too shocked to say anything.
    Flying brings out the best in people.

  24. Dave says:

    6’3″ + 290 lbs. + airplane seat designed for “average” adult + grouchy flight attendants = pure misery.
    I. HATE. FLYING.
    (I have to cut the flight attendants some slack, though. If I had to deal with what they deal with on a daily basis, I’d be grouchy, too.)

  25. Bill says:

    I have actually taken advantage of duty-free shopping. But only for one thing. My wife really likes this one liquor called “Sheridans” but it isn’t availabe in the US unless you are shopping at a duty free store.

  26. 99. Crying babies… especially your own :/

  27. Ear popping fun? For me it’s more like extreme ear pain misery.

  28. Ted Drake says:

    Oh… how quickly people forget the pleasure of catching up on every friggin “Everyone loves Raymond” episode as some idiot three rows back cackles at every tired joke. Shut up you idiot, can’t you see I’m trying to adjust to European time? I need my beauty sleep!
    Fortunately, Raymond, may he rest in peace, has been replaced by an octogenerian Fonzie-based sitcom. I can’t wait to fly across the pond again to catch up on all of the episodes I’m sure to miss.

  29. Chris Prakoso says:

    All,
    Seems that not many people had been flying Long-Haul. You would never ‘really’ feel the experience of ‘flying’ before you do 26-Hour Door-To-Door Journey, with 4 Stop-Overs, in an Economy Class :D That’s what I call ‘flying’.
    My best Airport -> Changi – Singapore
    Free Wifi, special quiet place to sleep (with alarm clock). And you are asking about if one actually take advantage of Duty-Free shopping, I do ‘All The Time’, except of course if I fly inter EU which I don’t think you can’t do this anymore :( If you like gadgets/electronics, Changi is Heaven, all possible and the latest gadget you can think of, Tax Free !
    My Worst Airport -> Moskow – Rusia
    Stucked there for 6 ‘flippin’ hours, in the middle of the night (no shop opened), with no Toilet working, and I was really desperate for ‘Number 2′ :D It was a Nightmare !

  30. P. says:

    I think one of the major channels did a morning piece of what to do when you’re sitting with rude people while flying. Pretty interesting. I personally like the 2 playboy cybergirl centerfolds that were on their way to do a lingerie shoot but wound up getting arrested because of bad unruly behavior on a plane.
    P.

  31. marie b. says:

    Personally, I have a love / hate relationship with air travel.
    My substantially cushioned body just cannot get comfortable unless the adjacent seat is empty, in which case I can use one table for my laptop and one for whatever else I need. It rarely happens that way, as I’m usually paired with The Armrest and Personal Space Bandit.
    On the other hand, I love flying alone and I love the fact that Ireland -> U.S flights always show movies that have yet to even be released in Ireland yet. It’s like my own little bubble at 30,000ft.

  32. Jody says:

    The 6″ x 6″ movie screen, positioned either 6 rows away or directly over your head. And the headphones!
    I remember having to change my son’s diaper 3 times during a flight from Ottawa to Toronto (total flying time about 55 minutes). Oh wait…that should go under “Reasons I Enjoy Newborns”.

  33. Luke says:

    The hostesses, definitely the hostesses.

  34. Kim says:

    I like the lay flat beds, the power points in the seat, the Connexion wifi that lets you do work on those 12-14 hour sectors, the 5 course meals, the shiny cutlery, the free socks and shirts, the stewardesses who remember your name, the walk-up buffet when everyone is sleeping, the 99 channels of on-demand entertainment, the tables big enough to accomodate by 15″ Powerbook and my meal tray, and the muted sounds of babies screaming behind the curtain.
    Ahhh.. I love flying business. Even better is when they bump me into First. :-)

  35. Jay Taylor says:

    #33 – Luke, you got cupcakes on your flight?

  36. Joel says:

    You guys just get too much fly time to whinge about it…
    How about the benefits? ;)

  37. Miles says:

    The best bit about flying is that it’s always sunny and the clear beautiful blue sky!

  38. I’m 6’5″ tall… if I don’t go first class or get an exit row, my favorite part of flying is sitting with my knees in the old ladies “fully reclined” seat while the 300lbs “Jabba the Hut” talks to me about his giant pretzel.
    This typically happens on all east to west coast flights (when I’m not in first class which is rare now days, but oh the good times).

  39. Mike Caputo says:

    Hilarious.
    I’d say #3 is my favorite…
    Also, this post almost makes me want to rethink my flight to London England coming up next month…….. nahh, maybe not.

  40. George says:

    I like looking at the clouds especially when they look like giant marshmallows

  41. Jason says:

    Noone can forget a flight with a crying baby on it, always a key feature.

  42. Jon Sterling says:

    Try power walking around a 747 from San Francisco to Japan – 11 hours flt. time back in 1977 for a 14 year old at the time was pure insanity -
    Brushed my teeth 11 times during the flight and watched Smokey and The Bandit on the inflight movie – The fun part was switching to different languages and listen to Jackie Gleason cursing in Spanish, German, etc.
    Thanks for the memories and a trip to my therapist this week! :)

  43. anonymous says:

    Once, the guy next to me broke his laptop. It went BEEP, BEEP, BEEP, BEEP… He didn’t want to mess it up so he left it on for 2 HOURS before the finally went out.
    Worst flight of my life.

  44. Bob Duncan says:

    The last time I flew there was no movie, no leg room and they meesed up my food order. Typical Canadian Airlines!

  45. Ethan says:

    I think its always interesting to hear which airports people prefer (or prefer least for that matter), so I suppose I’ll share.
    Favorite domestic airport (US): Denver has the simplest design I’ve seen yet for an airport that size. Very easy to get to where you are going, and typically fast if the trains aren’t over-crowded. Other than that if you have at least 3 hours in Minneapolis/St. Paul the Mall of America is a great time-eater – take a train from the airport right to the mall, never even step outside ;).
    Favorite International: Munich, Germany is amazing. I love to see the technology, design, and inspiration that goes into a new airport. Terminal 2 is kind of scary though – Lufthansa land, all 80 or so gates. (Good) Free coffee is always appreciated though!
    As for my least favorites…There aren’t really that I can really say I hate. Frankfurt isn’t nice, but their excuse is renovation. Paris is hell if you have a tight connection. Genova (Genoa), Italy looks like it was built in the stone-age – and it smells funny, but what are the chances most people will ever be there? As for US airports there really isn’t one that I hate, but both LAX (I usually try to fly through Ontario when leaving/returning home to California) and Dulles (Washington D.C.) leave me with a bad feeling…like I’m gonna get mugged. Call me crazy.
    Mm…sorry for the essay.

  46. martinb says:

    Don’t forget the “ultimate turbulance” that comes right after going into the bathroom…

  47. Anurag says:

    And you actually get to pay for that much fun too ;)
    And I can absolutely agree with Steve above… your own crying child… unbeatable…

  48. Dave says:

    Ha ha ha…how true is #11 ??!! Brilliant!

  49. Manuel says:

    times which comes new this list, not yet behind the sense, but after longer thinking it will already occur to me

  50. Ryan says:

    Duty free rocks if you’re a fan of alcohol. My parents always stop at the duty free when returning from scotland, picking up those single malts.

  51. Very Hilarious.
    I Love flying

  52. Chris says:

    Don’t forget the irritating jerks that do not check their luggage and bolster down the aisle with some huge honking suitcase. Then they take up the entire overhead bin (if it even fits in the bin) so my little appropriately sized carry-on won’t fit. Hey, you’re not saving any time by not checking that huge trunk! You’re just putting on a show for the other passengers.
    Oh yeah and the other jerks that immediately stand up and crowd the aisle the second the plane hits the ground and the “seat belt” light goes off. Exactly where do they think they’re going?
    Flying…it’s the people that make it suck.

  53. Music! says:

    I agree with Jason

  54. Seb says:

    Turning up 4 hours before my flight, being the first to check in, asking for a window seat, and finding out once I was onboard that this was the single fecking row on the airplane /without/ a window! I was not impressed to say the least.

  55. Glenn Wolsey says:

    I love the feeling of emptiness when I’m flying, knowing all my worries are on the ground far away.

  56. As for my least favorites…There aren’t really that I can really say I hate. Frankfurt isn’t nice, but their excuse is renovation. Paris is hell if you have a tight connection. Genova (Genoa), Italy looks like it was built in the stone-age – and it smells funny, but what are the chances most people will ever be there? As for US airports there really isn’t one that I hate, but both LAX (I usually try to fly through Ontario when leaving/returning home to California) and Dulles (Washington D.C.) leave me with a bad feeling…like I’m gonna get mugged. Call me crazy.
    take your experience…