By Hannah Waters
With Christmas approaching faster than Santa’s sleigh zipping across the night sky, many of us will likely be hitting the roads, rail, or airways to head home for the holidays or enjoy a festive break. But, while this is an exciting prospect, the time spent in travel from A to B can feel like a bit of a drag.
The good news is there are plenty of productive ways to spend your journey, so it doesn’t feel like wasted time. Here are six things you can do while travelling to make good use of your time in transit.
1. Read a book
Nothing beats getting lost in a good book, whether immersing yourself in a gripping novel or broadening your knowledge with something non-fiction. Reading is often a hobby that gets put on the back burner when there are other pressing tasks to tackle; however, with minimal distractions to steal your attention on a journey, it’s the ideal time to get turning those pages.
2. Play travel games
If you’re travelling with somebody else, travel games are a great way to enjoy passing the time together without using a screen or device. Not only will it make your journey go by quicker, but playing games can also help to stimulate your brain. Recent research revealed that Canada’s favourite tabletop game is Monopoly, so why not pack a travel-size version for your next trip?
3. Tune into a podcast
Podcasts are the ideal travel companion. Covering all sorts of subjects, including news, real crime, politics, science, fictional tales and comedy, you can simply shut your eyes and listen or watch the world go by as you take it in. With most of the best podcasts coming in bitesize episodes, you can listen to as few or as many as you’d like to fill your journey.
4. Learn a language
Learning a new language can be one of the most valuable skills you can attain. It can open doors to new career opportunities and allow you to communicate with more ease in other countries, all while giving your brain a new challenge. And it doesn’t have to be as hard as you may think. With language learning apps such as Duolingo, Busuu and Babbel, and language podcasts, you can develop your language skills during your travel down time.
5. Converse with a passenger
So many of us are guilty of avoiding interaction with strangers. We spend so much of our lives surrounded by other people, especially when we travel, yet we rarely strike up a conversation with them. There’s a lot to be gained from talking to new people, especially when your paths may not ordinarily cross. You never know; chatting with the passenger next to you on your next trip could make their day or even your own.
Life can be so busy that we don’t always have the time to stop and simply collect our thoughts. A journey – especially if you’ve got a nice view to look out at – could be the perfect time to enjoy some undisturbed “me time” and reflect on the things in your life. If it helps, you may find it useful to jot down some of your thoughts and feelings in a journal.