Opinion: Traveling’s the worst

Zachary Downes is a junior journalism major. Contact him at [email protected].

Zachary Downes

This week, my column is a bit different only because I’ll be traveling internationally within the week. However, I thought I would write about something that most people should know. Not many people travel, let alone travel by plane.

Traveling by plane can be really smooth and easy or really annoying and hard. Personally, I’ve experienced both ends of traveling.

The first part of making traveling easier for oneself is being able to navigate an airport and security. Going through airport security can be the biggest pain anyone has ever experienced. You have to take off your shoes, belts, hats, gloves and sometimes even socks and walk through the scanner which is totally understandable because 9/11 and with all of the threats to national security that have happened in the past.

What really irritates me is be the people who carry 60 pounds of metal to the airport. Do you really think that you’re getting through security lickity—split wearing a Gucci belt, necklace, rings, and belly rings? No, you won’t. I stood in airport security at the Atlanta airport for an hour because some lady thought she was going to go all out with her bling. It took me two hours to get through security. Also, if you’re going to wear all that bling, remember you’re on a cramped airplane and it cannot possibly be comfortable.

My favorite thing is the people in the terminal. It’s a busy, congested place where people are frantically running to find their flight. It gets really interesting when a person gets up to the gate desk and looks in their bag frantically. Most people look for their tickets and misplace them, common when travelling and being forgetful. However, the desk attendant doesn’t think you’re looking for your ticket. They get uncomfortable and have airport security watch you. Then you’re under their radar and they stalk you for your entire stay at the airport.

After the plane lands and you are ready to get there, it takes a minute for the pilots to swap out, use the restroom and relax after just flying a plane across the country. People like to try and storm the gate to get to their seat. They get all eager to be the first people on the plane. Well, this is really funny to me because it is the battle of the century. But, then the people also forget that they can’t just get on the plane. It’s a process, and the people in economy board last.

Finally, the best part of flying is when you get put in the same row as people who do not get the picture. The last time I flew anywhere was from Charlotte, NC to Detroit and I got stuck with this lady who would not stop talking my ear off.

It was only a two hour flight, which isn’t that bad. However, she would continue to talk to me even when I was trying to sleep. If you are flying by yourself and you feel the need to talk to people, pull out your computer and instant message someone on Facebook. Do not tell your life story to people you do not know and that you are in close quarters with, especially when they are trying to sleep. You will not win points with anyone. And the people you’re sitting with will be annoyed.