5 Reasons Airports Are One Of The Happiest Places On Earth
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Politics and Activism

5 Reasons Airports Are One Of The Happiest Places On Earth

There's something special about airports, and the people inside them.

5 Reasons Airports Are One Of The Happiest Places On Earth

n early January I dropped my twin sister Rebecca off at the Atlanta airport so she could fly to Boston for a couple days and have fun with her friends. She was incredibly nervous—on top of normal flight anxiety, this was her first time flying by herself.

I, however, was giddy. I’ve flown by myself both domestically and internationally and I was happy that Rebecca now had the chance to do the same. I was excited that she was starting 2018 by going somewhere new and getting out of her comfort zone.

Out of everyone in my family, I am the one who has flown the most recently. While my dad has traveled all over the world for work, he stopped doing that about 30 years ago. So I was the one to help Rebecca find where to check in, help her with the kiosk, and walk her to the right desk to ask questions. And in that moment, I realized something.

I love airports. Being in them, walking around in them, everything. I’ll admit security isn’t thrilling to go through. There’s a lot of waiting and looking for a plug to charge your phone. But there’s something special about being in an airport, and about people inside airports.

1. People are nicer.

This is going to sound surprising, I know, but the people I’ve interacted with in airports have almost always been pleasant. When I was running late for my connecting flight in Paris a businessman let me go in front of him in the security line. When my flight to London was delayed a couple sitting next to me offered to buy me a coffee.

When I’ve been stuck waiting in various airports I’ve gotten into great conversations with people. I met a couple going on vacation to Ireland. I met a man who had family in the city I taught English in. In line for security I got to talk to a woman who wrote professionally. People in airports are just generally better and usually interesting to chat with.

2. Reunions!

Especially in the international terminal, watching reunions happen is wonderful. I was sitting next to someone flying back to his home country to see his sister get married. I sat next to a man going to surprise his mother for her 90th birthday. There was once a family sitting in front of me taking their 2 year old to visit her mother’s native country and family.

People wait to pick up loved ones with flowers. There were two cute little boys waiting next to me once who rushed excitedly into their father's arms screaming, "Daddy!" Reunions happen because of airports, and they induce the best smiles.

3. New experiences

When in an airport, you know a lot of people are doing something for the first time. Some of them are flying for the first time; others are traveling somewhere new. Many people are facing their fears (aviophobia, claustrophobia, cleithrophobia, and more) to do something amazing. Learning how to cope with anxiety and that the reward can be greater than the cost is so important.

4. Travel, duh

Unless you’re there to drop off or pick up someone, in which you fall into the reunions category, you’re getting to travel! Travel is so fun. You’ll get to eat new food, go new places, and see new sights. Your social media is going to get lit and you’re going to have experiences to share with the rest of your life.

If you’re traveling for work then good for you! You get to be one of those cool people who walk through the airport looking all professional who everyone is secretly jealous of. You might even get to sit in first class, lucky person.

5. The flying itself

When you think about the innovation that flying is, it’s truly amazing that it’s so common. Like you’re literally hurtling through the air in a metal tube at thousands mph, thousands of miles above the ground. Isn’t that cool?

If you’re on a long enough flight there’s probably movies to watch, and I’ve watched some great movies on planes. It’s also a great time to read, journal, catch up on Netflix, or nap. You’re stuck in that seat for a while, you might as well use it for me-time.

Airports really are one of the happiest places on earth. I hope you get to fly somewhere cool this year and that the flight is the best you’ve had. Happy travels!

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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