I appreciate that a 14 – 15 hour journey from Frankfurt to St. Louis is absurdly fast, given the distance we’re traveling. But it can be mind-numbingly boring to be stuck in a flying metal tube for hours at a time. You can only ponder the technological achievement for so long before the noise of the jets drives you insane. I’ve compiled a list of my chosen forms of entertainment for during the flight.
As far as I know these are free and available on all transatlantic flights, but you’re at the mercy of the selection from that airline. So far the flights I’ve been on have had plenty to choose from, and I usually end up watching a movie or two. That can knock out a few hours, but I usually find my attention span declining sharply into the second movie. I definitely have a preference for comedies, action movies, or even documentaries because I almost always cry during dramas, and crying on the plane can be awkward.
Bring Your Own Movies/TV Shows – Laptop or Tablet
You can also bring your own, so that you know that you’ll be interested in what you want to watch. Unfortunately you’re at the mercy of your battery. Most flights offer a USB charger in their long-haul economy seats, but I have never had one that worked. The Verlobter claims to have had one work for him just once, so we’re holding out hope for a repeat. We recently picked up a small power bank during the recent Amazon Prime sale, and that can extend the battery of some of your portable devices. I’ve got no assistance for the laptop, unless you luck out and have a seat with full AC power.
I’ve got an ancient iPod Touch that I break out only for flights because the battery power is still decent, but the Verlobter has an itty bitty Sansa Clip+ and I’m considering getting my own. I like to have something to listen to while I’m trying to rest in order to drown out the noise of the plane. I usually attempt to get some sleep, and if I’m lucky I can get in an hour or two, but that won’t happen if I don’t have something other than the plane to listen too.
I don’t want to get into the big debate, because I like both! I usually bring a paper book or two that I want to read as well as my Kindle. Paper books will never run out of battery, but they take up space, so I like the compromise of taking both. I think reading is a great way to pass the time, especially if your brain just can’t handle any more movies.
You can bring knitting needles on the plane! It’s completely allowed! Personally, I choose plastic needles for flying so that I don’t have to get into a debate with the security officers. No one has made any comments so far about them. I’m not someone who can focus only on knitting, but it’s good when I get into that second in-flight movie and am feeling restless or when listening to podcasts when I’ve given up on sleep. Knitting also has the benefit of making you feel like you’re being productive with your time.
Bring your own headphones. They give you free ones on the flight, but they usually suck. This is coming from someone who uses $10 headphones from Target.
How do you entertain yourself on flights? Am I missing anything, or is my list just complete overkill?