Tags

, , ,


Image

A few years ago, I went through a period where I was doing something new everyday. I would think about something that I have always wanted to do and then went on and did it. One of them was to go to an airport, look at the board with the upcoming flights, make a decision there and then and jump on a plane to somewhere with nothing pre-planned. Right. While I strongly recommend this as an experience – to do alone – as you suspect I had some money and some time and you should too, if you decide to do it. Now, this is a much more soul-searching exercise than it appears at first: I was in London when I did that, which is helpful in some ways and problematic in others. Since no pre-planning enters the equation, which airport do you go to? Mmmm, you need to know a few things about the London airports. Some mainly fly budget airlines, some are much bigger and have a huge number of transatlantic flights or flights to the far East. Do you have the money and time to go far? I had 4 days so the transatlantic and far East options were left out. I went to Gatwick to take my chances. Gatwick south or north? I went for South and do not remember the reason, possibly because I remembered from past experience that it had a larger selection of places to go than I remembered ‘north’ to have. I may have been completely wrong but hey-ho, this is one of the things you learn about yourself. Will you go to an airport/terminal where you know the flights? Do you already know roughly where you want to go? Do you prefer it this way? For me the answers were no, no and no. So, here I was at Gatwick South, looking at the board. Yeap. Great. About 100 destinations flashing in front of me. Ok. Process of elimination. How many are too close to take-off? They are out. How many are flying too far away? Out. How many are to places that you don’t want to go? This will drastically narrow it down, it did for me. Fine, except you don’t know how many of these flights still have seats available. At a big airport/terminal like Gatwick South it may came to about 10, at least it did in my case. Then, you find out how much these seats cost, which, as it is very very close to take-off, may make it completely stupid to go for. Just to give you an example, there was a flight to Copenhagen which only had business class left for the measly price of £3700 return, which I thought was …a bit more than I wanted to spend on the ticket alone. Some destinations were also out of the question as they required extra documents that I didn’t have (visa, etc). And then, of the very very few remaining options, you may need to make this decision: Do you go somewhere where you’ve been, or somewhere you haven’t? Do you go somewhere where you know someone, or somewhere where you know nobody? Again, I went for the geographically ‘unknown’ options. For me that brought it down to Tallin and Krakow. Both were freezing (it was February), both very beautiful cities that I had not been at the time. Then I remembered: I knew a girl in Krakow.

Advertisements