Up in The Air
Be careful the muse you choose for you will become like them. Since Up In The Air was released nine years ago, Ryan Bingham is a character who inspires people to be frequent flyer who fly domestic or international. A frequent flyer, Ryan has no fixed abode, relishes his travels, and desires to become the seventh and youngest person to earn ten million frequent flyer miles with American Airlines. Big fantasy for everyone, right?
What about me? My name is Rama Kristian. I train and develop people across East Indonesia for living. Traveling is part of the job. Can you guess? How many flights are done in past two years? More than hundred. Flying is for everyone these day, but hundred flights for past two years, welcome to miles high club. Like Ryan, I fly with the national airline of Indonesia as a business traveler. After you take off, a video was shown to you about all its exclusive privileges being a member. I experience what you see in the video. From priority check-in, boarding, and baggage handling to priority lanes at ticket offices, transfer desks, security and immigration - it's all seamless like they tell people in the advertisement.
Once I arrive in Bali, (I live in Bali almost five years now), A car driver told me that i was so lucky, unlike him, because he only sits behind wheel and take passenger from point a to z. Let me tell you about the life of a frequent fyer. It is not like what you have in mind. A business travel isn’t as fun and glamorous as it seems.
Can you imagine three alarms wake you in the middle of the night? The alarms wake you because you have to board at 1.30 am. Meanwhile you're sleeping with your love one, i should wake up, take a shower, and go to airport. Should I complain? No, Suck it up. When you agree to be part miles high club, you have to accept all consequences. Not only less sleep, but also travel disorientation from changing places and time zones so often. You need to cure as soon as possible in order to keep up your daily routine.
People asks me where do you live, i answer Bali most of the time and the rest is on the plane getting somewhere. Nomadic life is a life you can not escape as a frequent flyer. Who can resist living in different hotels every month, staying at five stars or four stars hotel, enjoying swimming pool, and drinking wine at the lounge? Some of us have dream living like him, but personally nothing beats being at home.
No one is going to wake up you in the middle of the night. No one is going to remind you to go to the airport. It would be much easier if you hire a personal assistant, or get a wife or husband. They will assist you all the time. Being a frequent flyer, it requires you good self-management skills, you can not depend to other people. The most important is good time management, you don't want to show up late to airport or missed your flight. It would cost not small money to reschedule your flight. Stress management and daily living skills are needed too as a frequent flyer.
Most of business travelers do not pay for their flight, everybody knows the company pays but they should avoid mistakes because even a small mistake costs a reputation. You have to ensure everything under your control. Make no mistake. People who have a good work ethic are able to survive as a frequent flyer.
Are you still considering yourself to be a frequent flyer? If it is yes, welcome to the club!