Marawa The Amazing is amazing. She holds five world records including the world record for spinning 160 hoops at once. She trained as a gymnast, was part of a circus and has travelled all over the world performing in places like New York City, Spain, Somalia and North Korea. She was also a semi-finalist for Arab's Got Talent. It was a miracle that we caught up with Marawa who has spent over 200 hours in planes in the last 2 months. Her knowledge of airport survival is strong. Listen to her advice and travel tips:
The biggest airport trap. Most travellers are distracted and this makes for very inefficient queuing. Watch the air hostesses and follow their lead. Although they often travel in packs, a lone air hostess is a marvel to watch - they will get from a to b in zip-zip time avoiding all prams, tourists with selfie sticks, suitcases on staircases, and all the while looking pretty glam. They are the airport heroes. Navigation experts.
Be Prepared. Outside of the Kobi truck at LAX there is never a reason to eat at the airport. Everything is designed to survive years and years of shelf time and gut time. It’s not worth it. Eat before you go - get a banana if you have to. Also, your stomach will have a much better time adjusting to a new time zone if it isn’t full of your departures city's finest preservatives and starches.
PRAMS AND OLD PEOPLE
Don’t get me wrong I love old people and babies. Except in airports. They just take longer to do things and they take up more space. I make a point to stay out of their way. If there is a choice between a queue with 3 prams or a queue without – you know what to do. Always look ahead.
If it's busy, don’t queue at the first one, there are always more close-by. But don’t wait until you are busting, you don’t want to turn a corner and be confronted with an hour wait in customs without a bathroom. Same goes for the flight, there is always a rush before landing. Try and go around an hour before landing, that way you can take your toothbrush and no one will be knocking on the door rushing you.
More and more airports are catching onto this. I can't believe it has taken this long. I ALWAYS get a massage. When else can you actually relax and not feel like you are meant to be doing something else? I am sure that’s why you have to get to the airport two hours before flights – for massages. Treat yo self!
These are the ones to watch. They spend the most time flying and they know all the tricks, I always ask them about what moisturisers they like, which airports are their favourites. You can learn so many great travel tricks from this lot! I.e. inflight liquid collagen face masks – a dream for ultra hydration in the clouds leaving you looking like you stepped out of a day spa not a long haul flight.
Essential. I have a few travel playlists, calm ones and party ones – They can save your life if you are stuck in a queue for hours or trying to stay awake between flights in the middle of the night. They will help keep you calm and make everything feel a bit like a movie.
If you are going to do it do it well. There is no reason why you can't look classy for the duration of your flight. But make sure it's comfortable; stretch wear has found its calling. The longer the flight, the more likely I am to go for the full travel tracksuit. The pockets are trés handy and everything feels better in a two-piece.
Pre-book to and from the airport. It is one less thing to worry about. Have a game plan for what you are going to do at your destination too. Check up-to-date comments on travel guides. Public transportation may be a faster and cheaper option in busy cities, which means having the right currency ready helps. Don’t rely on plastic. It's always good to have a little cash just in case.
100ml 100ml 100ml. Pack these in a zip lock bag and have it accessible at the top of your bag. Make sure you have your laptop ready as well. Refer back to queues and headphones. This part can be what makes the most innocent person freak out. People are unprepared, get nervous and have to unpack their bags. It's annoying and a waste of everyone's time. If you have forgotten to take out your BEST pair of scissors or 125ml of amazing perfume. You can always exit security and send your items home, at your expense of course.
It ain’t that hard to travel with 10 x 100ml bottles (that’s the official amount you are allowed) . The best thing to do is get a muji travel kit and just transfer your existing products. If you are going somewhere for more than two weeks you can buy an extra moisturiser or hair conditioner when you get there. Albeit, a travel kit should get you through two weeks! I always fly with moisturiser, Evian face mist and rescue remedy. Hydrated. Refreshed. Calm.
Your hands will usually be full, so bring a travel pouch, a handy go-to spot for wallet, phone and passport. It makes life so much easier. It's on a string so you can put it around your neck. It's nearly impossible to lose it or have it stolen. I had a cute one made with my name on it. It's the best thing to happen to me since travel size hair conditioner.
This app has genuinely changed my life for the better. Never again will I be caught mid-flight with a surprise attack from my menstrual cycle (for the record Etihad and Cathay Pacific provide em in the planes' bathrooms). Never again will I be searching for tampons in a foreign country without WiFi or sense of direction. THIS THING IS A MIRACLE. Since I started using Glow I know EXACTLY what day my period is going to start. This definitely helps when you are packing constantly for trips ahead. It's nice to know in advance.