Carol Radull, a journalist passionate about football, is an influencer with over half a million followers across social media platforms. As a frequent flyer, she tells us how she copes with the constant.
Are you a relaxed or an anxious traveller?
Strangely, I am anxious before I travel but the minute I leave my house I relax. Anxiety comes in when I feel I might forget something important like my passport.
But because I am always early to the airport when travelling, it allows me to settle in and become calm before the journey actually begins.
How do you prepare for a flight?
I pack early. I write lists of what I need and I make sure that I am ready early, before leaving for the airport.
Are you particular about flying either business or economy?
I cannot afford business class so I’m satisfied with travelling economy. The only times I have flown business class was on company sponsored-trips.
Long haul flights in economy can be unsettling. I once got a middle seat from Addis Ababa to Washington DC via Dublin. That was probably my most uncomfortable flight ever. I longed for business class.
What do you consider an attractive feature of an airport?
A Zen space. I once had an eight-hour stopover at Singapore’s Changi Airport. Their Zen garden was simply amazing.
I got to sleep on proper lounge chairs with quiet music and green vegetation as part of the ambience. With the restlessness that comes with long stopovers, a Zen garden is ingenious.
What feature of airports puts you off?
I hate small airports that lack good restaurants or duty-free shops.
What do you consider a must pack item on your trips?
Lip balm. I get dehydrated during flights and my lips get dry.
How do you dress for a flight?
Track bottoms or jeggings that don’t need a belt. They are more comfortable than jeans, and don’t have buckles that beep at every security check stop.
On a long flight, do you indulge in the in-flight entertainment or would you rather read a book, work, sleep or talk with another passenger?
Sleep or in-flight entertainment any day. I calculate that if I watch one movie then I kill at least 90 minutes. A comedy series is 24 minutes or so.
How do you kill time on a long layover?
Sleep, if there’s a Zen space. Actually I sleep even where there is no Zen space. OR Tambo airport in Johannesburg has a great water massage area.
Do you prefer taking a taxi or to be dropped off and picked up by a friend or family member?
I don’t mind being dropped by a taxi because departure is usually quick; but I love being picked up by family or friends.
Once in a foreign city, whether for business or leisure, what is your must do list?
Shop for souvenirs, experience the night life and sample the traditional food of that city.
Do you plan ahead for your stay in a foreign city or go with the flow once you arrive?
I plan to a T! Though half the time things don’t go as planned, especially when it’s a holiday trip. I am ok with going with the flow, but I must have had a plan.
On my first visit to Dubai, for example, everything had been planned by the travel agent.
I missed half the city tours and went shopping instead and had a blast!