Se­crets of fly­ing tribes to be on the look­out for

Weekend Post (South Africa) - - Travel -

About 600,000 peo­ple are in the air at any one time, as pas­sen­gers and crew of the 3,300 air­craft aloft some­where.

Like all in­ter­est­ing nations and cities, the world’s pop­u­la­tion of fliers is di­verse and con­stantly chang­ing.

Shaun Pozyn, head of mar­ket­ing at ku­l­ , takes a light-hearted look at some of the “tribes” and what we can learn from them.

The reg­u­lars: A lit­tle like Ge­orge Clooney’s world-weary char­ac­ter, Ryan Bing­ham, in the movie Up in the Air, these folk travel a lot and the nov­elty of be­ing served bub­bly while hurtling through the sky is long gone. They have tricks and hacks to get through check-in and se­cu­rity.

Like soldiers trained to field­strip and clean their weapons in the dark, they’ve honed the pro­ce­dures of re­mov­ing lap­tops and – in the case of in­ter­na­tional travel – liq­uids in plas­tic bags as they pass through se­cu­rity.

What we can learn: Stream­lin­ing. Some reg­u­lar trav­ellers may be a lit­tle pre­oc­cu­pied with whether turn­ing left or right in the se­cu­rity queue is quicker – a few main­tain that left is al­ways quicker – but they do easy, gen­uinely use­ful things too.

On­line check-in, bag-drops, re­served seat­ing and lounge ac­cess all make things a lit­tle eas­ier.

The A-lis­ter: These reg­u­lar trav­ellers are se­cretly con­vinced ev­ery­one in the ter­mi­nal and air­craft recog­nises them from the tabloid mags’ so­cial pages and their In­sta­gram feeds. They may sport sun­glasses at any time of day or night.

They keep their phones ready to take pouty self­ies with ador­ing fans as they head for an­other jun­ket to sam­ple a new cos­met­ics line, along with fel­low so­cial me­dia in­flu­encers.

What we can learn: Lounge ac­cess gives you ac­cess to bath- room fa­cil­i­ties where you can make sure your no-makeup makeup is on fleek – as the Alis­ters would say – be­fore board­ing, or sim­ply re­lax with a drink and a snack.

Lounges, like the Slow lounges at most do­mes­tic air­ports, are more likely to be able to ac­com­mo­date A-lis­ter re­quests for gluten-free-de­caf-no­foam-al­mond-latte-dou­bleshot-with-a-driz­zle-of-caramel than the out­lets in the ter­mi­nal. Some have show­ers.

The glo­be­trot­ter: This tribe ranges from the trav­el­ling vlog­gers tick-box­ing through a dozen coun­tries a year to aid work­ers trav­el­ling light while sav­ing lives.

They all have their own proven ways of stream­lin­ing their jour­neys.

Some pack a min­i­mum of cloth­ing and laun­der them along the way.

Oth­ers swear by rolling clothes up rather than fold­ing or have an ar­ray of high-tech giz­mos like so­lar charg­ers for their de­vices or to pu­rify wa­ter for drink­ing.

What we can learn: Keep an eye on spe­cial of­fers and up­dates on bag­gage al­lowances.

Glo­be­trot­ters know these may vary be­tween air­lines.

The leisurely: These are of­ten re­tired or empty-nesters trav­el­ling to see chil­dren and grand­chil­dren.

You’ll see them ex­ud­ing Zen­like calm in lounges or brows­ing air­port shops.

What we can learn: Give your­self plenty of time to get to the air­port and through se­cu­rity.

The un­usu­ally pro­por­tioned: You needn’t be as tall as Boban Mar­janovic – at 2.22m, the NBA’s tallest player this sea­son – to feel you’d like a lit­tle ex­tra legroom.

This tribe of­ten en­dures I’mglad-I’m-not-him stares from fel­low pas­sen­gers, who may also dread sit­ting next to more gen­er­ously pro­por­tioned fel- low pas­sen­gers.

What we can learn: Know the trade-offs. If you’re tall, you’ll covet an exit-row seat for its legroom, but the in-flight en­ter­tain­ment screens in those seats are usu­ally smaller.

The rebel: On air­craft they’re the ones who re­gard non-com­pli­ance with an­nounce­ments as a sym­bol of in­di­vid­u­al­ity.

What we can learn: Air­line safety in­struc­tions are in place for a rea­son.

Just fol­low them.

JET SET: Air­ports give rise to dif­fer­ent per­son­al­i­ties

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