It's always wise to give yourself plenty of time to check in your luggage and make your way through the security checks, but although being an early bird provides you with valuable peace of mind, it can also mean a long stretch of waiting around as you wait for your gate to be called.
Here are a few of our top tips for keeping yourself entertained at the airport:
1. Browse the book shop
Most airports have a book shop of some description as waiting for a flight is the ideal time to browse for a cracking holiday read or take a seat and lose yourself in a good book. Whether its fact, fiction, thriller or romance that piques your interest, this is your time to indulge. If novels aren't really your thing, stock up on newspapers or magazines to keep your mind engaged - time flies when you find yourself absorbed in interesting reading material.
2. Bring your gadgets
We are living in a digital age and the airport is no exception. Should you choose to bring your laptop, tablet or mp3 player, you can rest assured that there will most likely be free WiFi and docking stations so that you can recharge any flat batteries. Catch up with friends and family on social media, browse the internet or simply pop in some headphones and relax by streaming a movie or listening to music.
Related: How to read eBooks on an iPad
3. Grab a bite
They do say life's all about the journey and not just the destination, and with this in mind why not get your holiday started with a tasty treat, a leisurely glass of wine or a hot coffee? Major airports offer an excellent range of options to choose from - if you aren't a big fan of plane food, it makes sense to grab some refreshments before you board.
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4. Shop duty free
Duty free zones are like shimmering oases to travellers with a penchant for shopping. These retail outlets are exempt from certain local or national taxes as the goods will soon be taken out of the country. If you are looking to treat yourself to new perfume or aftershave, cosmetics, clothes or a nice bottle of local liquor, the airport is the place to indulge in a little retail therapy and pick up some great discounts.
5. Pamper yourself
A little rest and relaxation before a flight can go a long way to helping you lapse into holiday mode. The larger hubs often offer spas where you can enjoy a soothing foot or back massage and maybe even treat yourself to a treatment such as a facial. When you consider that a flight may entail a long period of time sitting in one position in your seat, the air-conditioning can have a drying effect on the skin and sometimes it can be impossible to get any decent sleep, a bit of pre-flight pampering seems like a perfectly reasonable way to kill some time in the airport.
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