With an ocean of highway between you and your final destination, a long bus trip can quickly get monotonous and boring. But when you make the most of your travel time, it makes getting there half the fun. With charter buses, a professional driver does all the work, which gives you the luxury of being able to sit back and relax during the drive. From the travel experts at Metropolitan Shuttle, here are a few activities to keep you occupied for the long haul.
Network with Like-minded Professionals
If you’re traveling on a charter bus with a large group, everybody is headed to the same event, which means that there’s a good chance you’ll share similar interests. Using your travel time to engage in conversation is more than chitchat – it’s a smart and productive way to network with friends and colleagues.
One of the easiest ways to start a conversation with acquaintances is by asking a question because it shows that you have interest in the person. Or, you might need help or advice about the upcoming event – people are usually happy to offer their advice and assistance. Another approach is commenting about the weather. It might be a cliché, but it can easily lead to other topics of interest.
Catch Up on Your Favorite Entertainment
Think of these couple of hours on the bus as free time you wouldn’t normally have during your busy schedule. This makes a long bus ride the perfect time to catch up on all your favorite entertainment, which can be easily accessed from your smartphone or laptop. With apps like PLEX, you can stream the latest releases as well as classic movies and TV shows. After binging on a few shows or indulging in a double feature, you’ll be at your destination before you know it.
Stream New Music for a Playlist
Making a playlist isn’t something you can just throw together. There’s a certain approach to each mix depending on the theme, recipient, and occasion. As your bus travels down the interstate, take some time to search for new music, plus albums you’ve been meaning to upload. Everybody loves a good playlist because as soon as you put on headphones, it takes you away to a special place of insight and introspection, a state of mind that allows you to focus on the music and what it means to you.
Get a Jumpstart on Work
With smartphone technology, you have the convenience of your office in the palm of your hand. Use your time on the bus to catch up on emails, sort through paperwork, put together invoices, or other administrative tasks on your ‘to do’ list. When you’re on your way from point a to point b, make every minute count by being productive. After a few hours, you’ll be amazed at how much you can accomplish when you set your mind to it.
Set Goals For the Week
A long and boring commute is the best time to make goals for the work week ahead. In fact, many successful people are in the habit of setting goals on a regular basis. With plenty of time to think, try focusing on what you hope to accomplish. Get out your calendar and make self-imposed deadlines for yourself so you’ll always be a step ahead at work. Take a moment to step back and look at the bigger picture – did you achieve all your goals or do you still have some work to do?
If your charter bus allows it, pack a variety of your favorite road trip snacks, including something savory, sweet, and most importantly, thirst quenching to wash it all down. If the bus doesn’t allow food and drinks onboard, another option is to pack a tailgating cooler for the whole gang to enjoy in the parking lot before the event. Whether you’re catching up on work-related tasks or watching your favorite entertainment, snacks make everything more enjoyable.
Catch Up on Pop Culture
As long as you catch the major headlines, it doesn’t matter if it’s TMZ or CNN. Listening or reading articles about news, sports, or the weather forecast gives you plenty of material for small talk, the social balm you need to create a rapport with clients or colleagues. When you sound informed, you’re more likely to make a good impression.
Make Time for Personal Growth
Educational audiobooks and other materials are widely available, including accessible lectures from The Great Courses, which are taught by college professors. You could also learn a new language or hone your mental reflexes with a brain-training app like Lumosity.
Have Fun with Trivia
If you’re traveling with a group, get the whole gang involved with a friendly but competitive game of trivia. Download a trivia app like Fun Blast Trivia, which is like Trivial Pursuit for your smartphone. You’ll find a variety of questions that cover history, pop culture, politics, and more.
While you might not think that a bus trip is the ideal place to meditate, the rhythm of riding on a comfortable and lengthy bus ride might be the perfect place to center yourself. If you need some guidance, there are a variety of guided meditations available on Youtube or apps like Headspace. Take a deep breath, count to ten, and slowly close your eyes. Picture a peaceful lake next to a field of flowers, with a gentle breeze rustling through a grove of aspen trees. Relax in your comfy reclining seat, and soon you’ll be deep into your meditation session, which will help you mentally prepare for the upcoming event.
On any long trip, it is important to improve your circulation through exercise. You might not realize it, but there are many exercises you can do while seated and without needing special equipment. Start with an upper body stretch by raising both arms over your head and then finish with a few calf raises. Do ten reps of each to feel energized and refreshed by the end of your trip.
Podcasts provide an amazing array of entertaining and educational information. iTunes or Google Play features any topic imaginable, which makes it easy to find podcasts that pique your interests. Another great feature of podcasts is that you can adjust the setting to faster speeds, which means you can gain even more knowledge in a shorter amount of time. Before your trip, visit iTunes or your favorite podcast app, and start learning about a new business venture or hobby, or simply be entertained. Another way to enjoy the journey is with a comedy podcast. Having a few laughs with your favorite comedians helps relieve stress and keeps you in a positive mindset for the journey.
Play a game. Whether it’s Punch Buggy, I Spy, Twenty Questions, or Truth or Dare, a good old-fashioned game is a great option for passing the time and bonding with the group. You could also play traditional board games such as Scrabble, Battleship, or Four in a Row, which come in popular travel versions. Sometimes real games are more fun than video games, and they are far more relaxing.
With a range of fun and productive activities at your fingertips, getting to your destination is anything but boring.