A trial lawyer's plane travel strategies.


Actually the headline is a bit misleading because it is not possible to ever actually like the process of flying on a commercial airplane – in coach.  But there are ways to make it bearable.  If things don’t go horribly wrong that is.  There is always THAT.  The element of “what if” to make things spicy.

Check in online as soon as am able.  Check to see if a better seat is available. Typically will cut things a little close when heading to the airport.  (This article won’t discuss the times have cut them too close.)  Don’t like waiting.  Bad impatient person.

Prefer packing small suitcase.  Less chance of it being lost.  Used to worry about getting on the plane quickly to make sure suitcase will fit in overhead.  Have reconsidered that.  Would rather prolong getting on stuffy plane.  Have learned if overhead is full, they will stick it in hull of plane without charging baggage fee.   You don’t have to heft it up and down out of the bins.  So now, wait til last call.

Carryon is a big soft bag.  It should have rollers but doesn’t.  Is big enough for laptop and purse.   Purse has to fit in carryon otherwise you are up to three.  Carryon holds additional essential items as follows:  1) socks; 2) microbead neck pillow with washable soft not furry cover; 3) narrow but warm blanket; 4) noise cancelling earphones – not the pricey ones – knock off version from Costco have lasted for 3 years; 5) kindle; 6) ipod; 7) two buck bottle of water bought after security (heard too many icky stories of airlines refilling big water bottles with tap); 8) food – usually a salad properly balanced with a large cookie – today it is a sprinkled sugar one (airline food is a disaster – don’t do it ever); 9) disinfecting wipes (just in case you need to use the facilities – do whatever you can to avoid doing that on the plane).

The initial set up is the most important part.

First, sit by the window if possible.  Can pretend not crammed in stockyard inside of plane belly.  The nice (nonhuman) wall of the plane is on one side.  Good to rest head against.  Prevents bobble head sleep disorder.   Avoid exit rows.  Legs are short so don’t care.  Plus you can’t recline your seats there.  Also avoid front row as can’t store stuff under nonexistent seat in front of you.

Here is the proper sequence to get settled in.

Take off shoes and store in bag.  Put on socks. Put hair on top of head in unattractive but comfortable samurai warrior bun.  Put neck pillow on.  Put blanket on lap.  Put earphones in ipod and leave on lap.  Put kindle on lap.  Hide with blanket.  Don’t put anything in gross pocket in front seat where thousands of passengers before you have put very bad things that you don’t want to think about.   Shove carryon under seat.  Use as foot rest.  And voila.  Will be comfortable for about…five minutes.

Hopefully plane takes off on time (this article won’t discuss what happens when plane is delayed.  Okay if you must know can tell you there are internal tantrums involved).  Wait to hear magic words “we have reached cruising altitude you may now turn on your electronic devices.”

Don’t know how survived plane travel before the electronic age.