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Solo Traveller guide to airports

by The Passionate Traveller

A lot of people love the whole airport experience, whereas others see it as a necessary part of getting to a fantastic destination.  I’ve been fortunate enough to travel a lot over the past few years and so here are my top 5 tips for making the airport experience as simple as possible!

Don’t dress to excess

One of the main places where I observe people getting stressed is going through Security.  Jackets will always be requested to be removed, so if you are layering make sure you can easily take off your top layer.  It is rare that shoes are requested to be removed – but if you are wearing boots, heels, wedges or similar large shoes then you may need to take them off.  So with that in mind, err on the side of comfort and wear footwear that’s easy to take off and put back on.  Accessories may look lovely, but why not save them for once you are on your holiday – chunky belt buckles, lots of jewellery or large watches can often set off the security detector.

Handy Luggage

We’ve all been there, you check online for the maximum weight of hand luggage and then you fill a cabin case to within 3 ounces of the limit.  But it doesn’t need to be this way… Just think carefully about what you are going to need at the airport and on-board, and pop everything else in your main case.  Refreshments are readily available so I find for an average flight I only need a few items – a good book, an electronic device (like my iPad or Kindle), headphones, passport, wallet/purse and maybe a few toiletries.  You’ll find this fits into a small and manageable bag, is a breeze to carry around the airport and will fit under the seat in front of you for easy access all flight long!

Get Settled

Once you have checked in and passed through Security you have done the hard work – so now it’s Me Time!  Avoid the temptation to look around the plethora of shops, they aren’t as good value as you think anyway and I’m sure your pals can live without the giant Toblerone.  Check the departure board to see if there is any indication of your flight gate – if there is head over that way, if not then find a nice spot and relax.  A coffee shop often does the trick for me – nothing gets me in the holiday mood like a nice cup of coffee and a cake.  Alternatively find an area with fewer people and sit yourself down and get stuck into that book you have been looking forward to.  Just remember to keep an eye out for news of your boarding time as not all airports make announcements these days.

Make Friends

If you are travelling on a solo traveller holiday with Riviera Travel then keep your eye out for the distinctive luggage labels (and make sure yours is visible too!) so you can spot your fellow travelling companions.  The best places to spot people are at check-in and at the departure gate – so if you fancy getting to know people early on you might want to wait around in either of those places.

Lounge Around

Airport lounges are becoming increasingly popular… and for good reason.  They offer a lovely, tranquil start to your holiday and also offer you that little bit of luxury that you deserve!  They usually cost around £20 or so and at first I thought that was a little steep.  But after my first visit I was converted!  A variety of different seats, tables, sofas, massage chairs await, not to mention complimentary drinks and food as well.  Different airports have different options so have a look at what’s available.  Riviera Travel’s solo customers are entitled to a discount on lounges when booked through Holiday Extras – a leaflet will be sent with your booking confirmation.

The most important advice I can give anyone is just to relax.  Airports can seem intimidating, but there is no need to worry.  Every airport I have ever been to follows an almost identical formula and so if you take the above tips on board you will have nothing to worry about other than whether to have a cappuccino or hot chocolate and how much of your book to read before you fly!


The Passionate Traveller

I live to travel and have visited over 50 countries.  I love to see the world’s most iconic sights in person, as well as seeking out some quirky finds.  I love to share my tips, whether it be about packing, airports or sightseeing!

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5 Responses
  • Jenny
    March 7, 2017

    Advice on what to take in your cabin baggage never allows for cameras and lenses. You don’t have to be a professional to want to use something other than a pocket size compact camera.

  • Kay Taylor
    March 6, 2017

    The airport experience is further enhanced if you book assisted travel from check-in to departure gate if you feel you walk at a slower than others it takes away the worry of not reaching the gate in time

  • Kay Taylor
    March 6, 2017

    The airport experience is further enhanced if yoi book assisted travel from check-in to departure gate if you feel you walk at a sloer pace than others it takes away the worry of not reaching the gate in time

  • C.Taylor
    March 6, 2017

    If you take medication please make sure to put it in your hand luggage.

  • Richard John
    September 6, 2016

    The airport experience is really the beginning of the holiday- trip experience, full with great eating opportunities, shopping and modern upto date facilities, and a great way to meet your fellow Go Solo travelling companions.

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