Category Archives: Reviews

Guestblog: Split Airport – things to do when your flight is delayed

You have heard the phrase a thousand times over, “time passes in a blur…” Very true. Except when you are waiting for a delayed flight in a busy airport departure lounge. It is even worse when the flight is canceled altogether. As someone who has been caught in such situations a dozen times in the past, I have made it my duty to discover fun things to do in various cities around the world if my flight is delayed or cancelled. Of all the destinations I have covered this far, none has provided as much choice and variety of activities to do as Split in Croatia.

I hereby share some of the best distractions for airline passengers facing prospects of delayed flights in the bustling city. As you can see, the suggestions are varied enough to offer options to travelers delayed for short to lengthy periods of time as the case may be.

Here are suggestions of what to do if you are in Split airport (SPU) and:

Your flight is delayed for 2 hours or less…

If you have about a couple of hours to spend waiting for your delayed flight, you do not have to spend that time twiddling fingers or browsing through a boring magazine in the lounge. Owing to its scenic location and very busy nature of business, Split Airport is known the world over as a perfect place to go airplane spotting.

The seaside promenade on the historic city of Trogir offers the best view of planes landing and taking off as it lies just below the glide path to the airport’s Runway 05. But if you do not have enough time to go all the way to Trogir (the old city is on an island just off the airport itself), opt for a strategic location just outside the airport as the runways are very close to the airport boundaries. You will be surprised at the number of tourists and locals enjoying the same fascination.

Your flight is delayed for 3 to 6 hours…

For a lengthier delay stretching for up to six hours, you have a wide selection of attractions in and around the city. I would highly recommend a visit to the Diocletian’s Palace in the historic sector of the city. A UNESCO World Heritage site, the palace was built at the height of the Roman Empire and is amazingly preserved to the present day. You will be enthralled by the hulking height of the palace’s four gates: the Golden Gate (Porta Aurea in Latin, or Zlatna vrata in Croatian), the Silver Gate (Porta Argenta in Latin, or Srebrna vrata in Croatian), Iron Gate (Porta Ferrea in Latin, or eljezna vrata in Croatian) and Bronze Gate (Porta Aenea in Latin, or Mjedena vrata in Croatian.

Your flight is delayed for 7 to 12 hours…

For travelers whose flights have been delayed for up to 12 hours, I would recommend going for something other than mere sightseeing. Of the various recommendations I could make, none make as much sense as going for a snorkeling adventure of the coastal waters of Split. The PADI diving center is a licensed snorkeling club and even if you have zero experience in the pastime, you will soon be having a wild time of it under the guidance of expert snorkelers who know how to make the experience a fun filled outing.

Your flight is cancelled or delayed by over 12 hours…

The news that your flight has been cancelled or delayed for longer than 12 hours may feel like a vicious kick in the tummy but you should not let it dampen your spirit. I was once caught up in similar circumstance at this very airport and I forgot the inconvenience of it all by opting to go for a sailing experience around the amazing Dalmatian coastline. After all, it is not for nothing that Croatia is known as a sailing paradise.

There are many boat charter agencies within a 10-20 minutes’ taxi drive from the airport. From there you will be able to charter a vessel of your choice and set off for an all day long sailing adventure. The one important thing you should keep in mind is getting familiar with the Croatian sailing guidelines with important numbers and danger signals which will keep you safe while on board.

The Dalmatian coastline has well over a thousand islands and islets each with its own story and landscape. We hope this tips will help you get the most out of a delayed or cancelled flight and you will use this opportunity to see more of the beauty Split has to offer.

About the author: Romeo Demes is a passionate writer and blogger from Croatia. He lived more than half of his life in the beautiful Dubrovnik. He travels a lot and has seen many amazing places, but you know how they say – no place feels like home.

[Image source:]

Shanghai Pudong International Terminal 2 – not quite Hong Kong

If you haven’t been to mainland China, arriving at any Chinese airport is quite exciting as it can feel a bit like the forbidden, foreign land. At least it did for us when we visited. But if you’ve traveled through a large number of airports like we did, you may find something you expected to be fairly exotic, is actually pretty “normal”. This airport terminal could certainly be almost anywhere in the world. One well known airport comes to mind quite strongly though.

Continue reading Shanghai Pudong International Terminal 2 – not quite Hong Kong

Guestblog: Dubrovnik Airport

Delayed or canceled flights can be a real nuisance, causing frustration and boredom whenever they happen. Still, if this ever happens to you at Dubrovnik airport (DBV) there are a few ways to turn the situation to your advantage. As someone who lived in Dubrovnik and worked at its airport for quite a few years, I had seen a lot of frustrated tourists aimlessly waiting for the time to pass – which is a big mistake as there are several interesting and cool things you can do. Continue reading Guestblog: Dubrovnik Airport

Guestblog: Melbourne Airport – Fun things to do

Guestblog provided by Mark T.

I travel a lot for work, and consequently spend a lot of time at airports, particularly Melbourne airport (MEL). As I am not one for sitting patiently and waiting for my flight for hours while staring blankly at walls or people, I try to have as much fun at the airport as I can. As time flies (no pun intended) when you are having fun, here are my top tips for having a good time at Melbourne airport.

Airport Lounges
Before you depart anywhere, familiarize yourself with the airport so that you know exactly how much time you need to go somewhere and get back in time. There are a lot of fast food restaurants in the airport, but the airport club is hands down my first choice for a top notch pub style meal, a pint of beer and a game of pool. The club is situated close to the airport and is a prime location for plane spotting or gazing at the stunning views of the Outback.
The thing I like most about the club is its outdoor garden and barbecue area. Soaking up the sunshine while enjoying a hot meal and a cold beverage in this prime location is definitely a better alternative to sitting in a neon-lit waiting room. The club is always vibrant and full of fellow travelers, as well as locals and airport workers. The food is hearty, the beer cold and the staff friendly, as it should be.

Airport lounges are open to people with frequent flyer cards, and having to constantly fly, you may imagine I have them all. 🙂 From time to time I enjoy the Melbourne lounge, especially if I don’t have too much times on my hands.

Melbourne Airport Golf Club
As an avid golfer, I have come to relish long layovers at Melbourne airport. The airport golf club boasts a fully equipped 70 par, 18 hole, 6000m golf course. With immaculate water features and a whopping 37 bunkers and elevated greens, the golf course wants for nothing and will satisfy even the pickiest golfer. The highlight of the golf course is definitely the 16th hole. The green’s location places you less than 60 meters below the flight path of aircraft, and is a unique and powerful experience. The golf club also features a licensed club house, practice nets, fairway and putting green as well as a fully equipped pro shop and rental service. The golf club leaves both pros and rookies satisfied.

Aircraft Viewing Area
Just outside the airport you can find several airport viewing areas. They offer unsurpassed views of aircraft landing right above your head. Often there is even an ice cream van on sight. I like to go there on hot days, buy an ice cream, have a seat and watch the show. There is something magical and powerful about watching a speck on the horizon become two dots of light and rapidly transform into a huge aircraft that zooms over your head. These little known locations are truly a plane spotter’s heaven.

Woodlands Historic Park
Just outside the airport is the beautiful 150 year old Woodlands Historic Park. You can visit homesteads from the 1840s and see the world through the eyes of the original European settlers. The park offers many outdoor activities such as horse riding, bike rentals and hiking trails. My favorite part of the park, though, is a fenced area called the “Back Paddock”. It is a great place to see kangaroos, various colorful birds and other wildlife in a pristine grassland environment. The park is opened seven days a week, but closes at 4pm which is quite early, and a shame for when you have to be at the airport in the evening.

When I have some serious time to kill, I like to take the airport’s Skybus shuttle service to go into town. A return ticket costs less than A$30 and the buses are clean, fast and reliable. Once in town, your entertainment options are limitless. Bars, shops and stunning architecture all compete for your attention.

If you have a lot of time on your hands, I would definitely recommend going to the Melbourne museum. For around A$8 you will have access to the largest museum in the Southern hemisphere. Another option is to take the skybus to the nearby Crown Entertainment Complex. From bowling and cinemas to live shows, casinos and shopping malls, it truly will suit anyone’s entertainment needs. The only problem is that you might lose track of time and thus risk missing your flight.

In summary people usually hate waiting, especially at the airports, where the wait is usually long and characteristically tedious. However, if you plan and use your imagination to keep yourself occupied, you almost won’t notice when the boarding time comes.

About the author:
Mark is an Aussie that travels a lot. At times, he says, it’s awesome, at others not as great as it seems. When he’s home, he loves to spend time with his wife and two kids.

[Photo from Wikipedia – some rights reserved]

Report: Across the States with JetBlue

America is the land of opportunity and freedom, right? In many ways that’s definitely still true: You’re free to drive anywhere, you’re free to express your opinion (that guy in the subway did exactly that with the full force of his adult voice) or you can still make it big in business whatever background you have. And certainly for consumers, freedom also applies to the country’s economy. There’s hardly another place where you have so many choices – be it the type and brand of mineral water you can drink, the breakfast cereals you prefer or the airline you choose to cross this vast country with.

Continue reading Report: Across the States with JetBlue

Melbourne’s new click & collect airport shopping: our verdict

Know that feeling when you fly back home from a business trip or a well deserved break to come back home to an empty fridge? Yes, but there are tons of take-away options you say? Well, that’s true but then you’ve had someone else’s cooking while you were gone. Plus, eventually you’ll need to fill that fridge up again. So, what to do?

Continue reading Melbourne’s new click & collect airport shopping: our verdict

Brunei International Airport: about to grow up

Where the hack is Brunei, you might ask? You’re excused as he country is one of the smaller ones, hence exactly knowing where it is might not be everyone’s geography forte. So let us put our teacher’s voice on and tell you that Brunei is a tiny sultan state on the island of Borneo in South East Asia. Borneo itself is the third largest island on the planet and shares its land mass between three countries: Malaysia, Indonesia and Brunei.

Continue reading Brunei International Airport: about to grow up

Berlin Tegel revisted, probably for the last time

Berlin Tegel (IATA: TXL) is a funny airport. It’s there where according to Wikipedia, Aviation history dates back to the early 20th century, when the Prussian airship battalion was based there and the area became known as Luftschiffhafen Reinickendorf. After that a lot had happened in the area (for further details refer to your history books) until in the 1960s the current airport took shape. And what a shape it took! Tegel Airport is notable (or funny as I called it) for its hexagonal terminal building around an open square, which makes walking distances as short as 30 m (98 ft) from the aircraft to the terminal exit.

Continue reading Berlin Tegel revisted, probably for the last time

JFK Terminal 7: Quite a passable experience

With the pleasant memory of JetBlue’s dedicated Terminal 5 still in the back of my head (we wrote about it), Terminal 7 at JFK feels a bit claustrophobic upon entering. But it takes a lot more for me to give up. Surely there has to be more to the home of British Airways at JFK. Let’s have a more closer look:

Continue reading JFK Terminal 7: Quite a passable experience

Lounge Review: SWISS hospitality at Zurich Airport

Knowing that airlines put most of their efforts into the lounges at their home airport, I expected big things from the SWISS lounges at Zurich Airport (IATA: ZRH; LD hub page). SWISS – or Swiss International Air Lines – serves 72 destinations in 39 countries – most of them through its main hub in Zurich. The airline claims that because it is the airline of Switzerland (albeit owned by the Lufthansa Group), SWISS is the byword for traditional Swiss values. Surely you now want to know what those values are. Being Swiss myself, I want to come up with ‘attention to detail’, ‘high quality’ and ‘hospitality’. Others might add that the Swiss are known for staying on the fence and that they can be slightly boring. So, how do the SWISS lounges fit into this?

Continue reading Lounge Review: SWISS hospitality at Zurich Airport