Ever got to the airport far too early and thought 'What on Earth am I doing here already?'.... Yep. So have I.
I always wonder why I do it to myself - arriving at the airport so early because I have to take into account every possible eventuality that may somehow prevent me from reaching my sunny destination. The longest time I have spent loitering around an airport is 12 hours - a record that I am certainly not proud of but proved to be necessary due to the situation I was in at the time. Basically, in this case my travel mate and I arrived at Cairns airport speculatively in the hope of boarding a flight to Sydney which proved impossible. Hence a long, drawn-out wait until the next flight a whole half-a-day later.
During this nightmare of a wait my friend and I managed to amuse ourselves for a reasonable portion of it. Whether by eating our weight in fast food or by playing seemingly inane games that took on a distorted sense of higher meaning we survived (somehow) to board our flight in reasonably jovial spirits.
From that experience, I have extrapolated the five best methods of keeping one entertained whilst waiting for a flight...
1)Strike up a conversation with someone
Whoever it is, everyone has a story. Sure, in our case we tried (and failed) to chat to the prettiest things we could find but broaden your horizons by speaking to people of different nationalities and gain some insight into their World.
2)Play a game of how many
Categories include; How many moustachioed men will walk through gate number four? and how many times will this Mother clip this young boy around the ear?
3)Check out the duty free section
There is a wealth of entertainment to be had in this treasure trove. Cologne testing can take up a good couple of hours but beware of glares from the up-tight staff. Likewise, cheap sweet treats can be had for nominal amounts of cash and what better way to spend an hour than seeing how many Ferrero Rochers can be inserted into one's mouth without swallowing.
4)Explore the hidden avenues that your airport offers
You'd be surprised to find what hidden delights await you in your airport. The holy grail is a gaming arcade. Sure, their hard to come by, but once found, a couple of solid hours will fly by. Other joyous finds include Krispy Krème doughnut stalls and free internet connections.