Travel is amazing … why isn’t anyone happy?


We all know the experience of meeting someone along our flight path who is constantly complaining about air travel. They drone on about how miserable their trip has been by recounting every single obstacle, delay or cancellation that has stood in their way.

In their mind, it is a mathematical certainty that the next leg of their journey is destined to be even worse than before. They’ve made their decision – life at 30,000 feet is miserable.

Comedian Louis CK shared his views on this phenomenon of human emotion as part of a recent appearance on the Conan O’Brien Show.

His humor and pinpoint perspective on the amazing world we live in today is a drastic contrast to the disgruntled traveler. It would do us all some good to enter our air travel experiences with this energized and adjusted perspective.

How would our personal experience and the world as a whole be impacted if we all truly were able to approach air travel with this foundational sense of awe?

How would our days be different if they began with a sense of gratitude instead of a spirit of entitlement?

Maybe the only thing that is ‘miserable’ about air travel is our approach. Let’s change it.

Jason Barger is author of Step Back from the Baggage Claim: Change the World, Start at the Airport.

  • Allison

    So true! I’ll remember that next week when I fly to Japan–not that its a long 13 hour flight but rather it only takes 13 hours to get all the way to Japan. It really is quite impressive how technology and innovation can open up the entire world to us.

  • Lyngengr

    Don’t begin your travels with a “foundational sense of awe” or “sense of gratitude”. Start with the attitude that every person in the travel industry hates you, or at least doesn’t like you. Then when something nice happens, you’ll be surprised. But you won’t be disappointed if you get the “standard” service that you’re actually paying for.