Unless you’re a dedicated ground traveler, you’ve spent a certain amount of your life inside of an airport. You need to arrive two hours before your plane leaves the ground and often delayed flights and expensive nightly taxi rides make sure that you end up spending much more time in the airport than any normal person can appreciate.
And between you and me, if you’ve seen one, you’ve seen them all. Every airport has the same automatic glass doors, the same check in desks, the same security control and the same shops selling overpriced food, drinks and souvenirs.
Even the duty free shops appear to be overpriced these days, need I say more?
So after and average of 2.5 minutes after going through security, the boredom arrives. What to do now?
You could read a book - if you’re suffering a heavy delay probably write a book - or play a game on your iPod, iPad, iPhone, iBook or whatever iStuff there is hidden in your hand luggage.
But not everyone is that fortunate or i-minded, luckily there are enough airport games to keep us all busy.
Whose plane is this?
Airports have huge windows through which you have an amazing view of the starting grids and everything around. A lot of planes are parked next to the terminal unloading or loading passengers.
Which airline companies do you recognize?
Most people can tell American Airlines, Qantas and Emirates from miles away, but how good is your knowledge of Uzbekistan Airways, Iceland Air and Air Zimbabwe?
From which distance do you recognize the airline?
Can you recognize it without looking at the tail?
This game can be played by yourself or with many other players, depending on how competitive you are.
A tip for the cheaters: take a quick peak at the screens at the gate.
Have you heard about the Al-Makbar-Nicolas religion?
It happened already twice to me that while waiting for the gate to open, a guy comes sitting next to me to have a chat about Jehova or Mormonism. They are boring and annoying, but I listen anyway because I don’t have anything else to do.
But this is something we can do too!
Invent a religion and a range of rules and try to convert people.
Something like this: “Hello, I notice you’re also waiting for your plane, would you like to talk about the Al-Makbar-Nicolas religion?”. Even though most people will say no, you must persist.
“My religion is not wide spread, but very famous in Luxembourg. We only eat cat meat, we have to whistle when we walk (don’t forget to whistle as you arrive), we can only have sex with persons by whom the sum of their fingers and toes does not equal twenty and we always walk on our hands except when we are in airports”.
Again, you can play this by yourself or in a group, the winner is the person who has the most converted.
You have double fun when you arrive at your destination and you see the converted walk out of the airport on their hands.
Spot the terrorist
Security checks are a lot like being pulled over on the highway. You know you’ve done nothing wrong but still you have the feeling that you’re going to end up in jail anyway.
That fear can be read of peoples faces, as soon as the metal detector starts bleeping their smile fades, their face turns a couple of shades whiter and their eyes are looking for possible escape routes.
This game is about hanging around behind the security check and trying to predict which persons will be picked out for a body search. Don’t stand to close because the officers may send you away.
Once you’re getting good at this, you can move to a next level where you try to convince the security officers that a certain person is a possible terrorist.
The player who can cause the most body searches wins, you lose if you get thrown out of the airport.
Did you hear about the crash?
In these days of constant air traffic, a lot of people are still afraid of flying. This game is about increasing that fear or invoking it if the person wasn’t scared yet.
A possible scenario goes like this: you sit next to an unsuspecting victim and you say: “Are you also on flight x to destination y?”. If they say no, you’ll have to learn how to read the signs.
“Well, I heard that airline z has suffered the most plane crashes in the world”
“And what is more amazing, there seems to be a pattern. Every three years on the -date of today- a plane heading to destination y crashes. Every passenger dies. What’s the date actually?”
Let your imagination do the talking, the worse, the better!
The more persons you can get to turn around and leave the airport by foot, the more points you receive.
Everybody loves a good old fashion food fight, but for some reason airline travelers appear to be afraid to invoke one. So everyone will be happy when you start.
The trick is to start small, peanuts or M&Ms for example. You buy a bag of peanuts and you throw one to a person ten meters further. When he or she looks around, you do the same as if something landed on your head too. You can also throw two nuts at a time at two different persons, but then it can happen that they blame each other and start the food fight without you.
After a couple of nuts you need to increase the size of your object, sticky candy is a good successor, then you go for cake, sandwiches, salads, cheese burgers until the grand finale of two double whoppers and a hot coffee.
The more hits, the more points.
Since airport food is very expensive, you can get a serious lead by bringing food from home, Chinese leftovers, pizza or anything with garlic are absolute winners.
Which games do you play at the airport?
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