While most people think traveling is non-stop fun, the truth is you’ll likely have a lot of free time. Whether going on a long-haul flight or traveling by bus, it’s best to plan ahead to ensure you have everything you need to keep you entertained during layovers at the airport or long nights in a hotel. After all, traveling is the perfect time to disconnect and explore interests and hobbies you may not have time for in your day-to-day life. You may want to read a book you’ve been hoping to start or listen to a podcast that’s piqued your interest.
With that in mind, we’ve compiled this list of ways you can entertain yourself while traveling.
Play Video Games
Mobile gaming has changed entertainment, providing us with an easy way to pass the time wherever we are. Take advantage of this convenience during your next trip and download a few of your favorite titles.
Gaming has evolved greatly in recent years, with some saying that games have become an interactive form of art. This is hard to deny given the spectacular views players are treated to as they look out over Hyrule in Zelda’s Breath of the Wild, or as they explore the underwater city of Rapture featured in Bioshock.
Both games are available on the Nintendo Switch, which is compact enough to slip into your carry-on luggage.
Read a Book
With modern life so hectic, most of us don’t have the energy to read a book at the end of the day. Traveling is a time to relax and unwind, making it a great opportunity to pick up a book you’ve left unfinished or begin a new one. Books are an especially good companion for those embarking on a van life adventure or traveling long distances by train, plane, or bus.
If you don’t have any books on your list, reading about your travel destination is always a good idea. On the other hand, if you’re looking for book recommendations, Goodreads is an excellent website.
Learn a Language
If you’re traveling to a country where the residents speak something other than your native language, you may want to pick up a few phrases before your plane lands. Although you won’t become fluent during your flight, you could learn some words that’ll impress the locals and help you if you get in a jam.
One of the best language learning apps is Duolingo, which is free. There are 39 languages available on the app, so chances are your destination’s mother tongue is among that number. The more lessons you complete, the more become available offline, so you can even study your target language in airplane mode.
Start a Travel Journal
Documenting your travels will allow you to look back one day and see how far you’ve come. Writing will help cement your memories and give you an outlet to express your feelings during your journey.
With so many activities and emotions packed into each day while vacationing, it’s easy to forget the details. While photos can help capture these moments, there’s nothing like going back and rereading what you wrote several years later. If you want to share your trip with the world, you could even start a blog to document where you’ve gone.
Listen to Music
Exploring new music is an excellent way to escape your routine while traveling. From Spotify to Pandora and iTunes, many options exist for listening to music while on the move. We recommend subscribing to a service that lets you download songs. That way you can have your favorite playlists available whether you have WiFi access or not.
Watch a Movie
While most long-haul international flights offer a selection of movies, many domestic flights do not. If you know you’ll be traveling by plane, bus, or train for several hours, it’s a good idea to prepare by downloading a few movies and TV shows from your favorite streaming site.