Air travel sux


So its school holidays. Are your social media feeds clogged with curated images of ‘friends’ frolicking in exotic locales? Are these ostentatious displays provoking feelings of envy or inadequacy?

The Mumabs is here to tell you not to feel bad if your people are swanning around the Mediterranean or hot tubbing with the glitterati in Aspen. You might be relegated to a humble caravan park somewhere on the coast but chances are you are having as much fun as your more sophisticated mates. You see – reaching these far flung destinations involves air travel and frankly air travel sux.


Just ask this guy…

Air travel should not suck. Its miraculous to think that a metal cylinder weighing some 300,000 kgs can hurtle through the air at speeds of over 900 km per hour guided by a sexy pilot in a tight shirt and aviator glasses.


Behold the miracle of modern aviation!

Less than a century ago international travel involved weeks, nigh months at sea. Now any place imaginable is a mere  24 hour arse sit away. And yet that 24 hour arse sit is hell on earth.

Air travel once promised so much but has delivered so little. Back in the 1950s and 60s we imagined a golden future where everyone could be part of the glamorous jet set. Flying was meant to to be an elegant affair


like this.


or a groove-fest like this.

It is a bitter disappointment that the experience turned out to be more like this.


What economy class feels like.

I blame neo liberal economics. Airlines are forced to drain every last ounce of fun from your flight experience to keep costs at rock bottom. Profits not people and all that.

Of course some people do manage to have a good time on a plane – those who pay for it.

Recently some airlines introduced luxurious private cabins


which come with a beardy man to entertain you on the Sydney to London.

Not to be outdone other airlines offer a comfy armchair filled with Orlando Bloom.


Oh my. That would take the pain out of the LA run.

Nowadays the 1% can even get double beds. They come complete with rose petals and other romantic accoutrements


for those who wish to join the Mile High Club in style.

However this wont stop first class passengers from trying to cop a cheap one in the toilets. People are messed up like that.


Just ask this guy..

All this luxury comes at a cost my friends. A first class Sydney to Dubai return on Qantas will set you back over $13K – Orlando Bloom not included.  That’s more than my car is worth!   As a consequence 99% of us are forced into the pit of despair that is economy . ( At approx $1,200 Sydney to Dubai return its about what my car is worth)

My husband and I have reached a stage where we can afford to indulge in some travel adventures. But we dont. Because air travel sux and long haul flights and kids don’t mix.


Get those mofo kids off my mofo plane!

We recently holidayed in NZ because short hall flight. Whilst the stay was brilliant the air travel part sucked big ones.


Not his.

The journey over was kind of tolerable. We patiently endured the usual long queues and overpriced, stale airport food.

Getting through security was not without incident. I was called back over a nail file in my carry on luggage. I guess the security people could see I posed a threat. In my leopard print jumper and skinny jeans I looked desperate enough to hack the door of the cockpit open so as to cop and eyeful of hunky pilot. Disturbingly said nail file was promptly returned. Its a very bad sign.


A cougar’s weapon of choice.


Once aboard we were crammed into tiny bum crunching seats and provided with no in flight entertainment. Its times like these one thanks the Gods for i-Pads even if you have to share one between two kids.

Nor were we provided with food and forced to purchase stale sandwiches at inflated cost or face starvation. We weren’t surprised to find that like Laura Palmer the sandwiches came wrapped in plastic.*

I marvel that airlines pay big dollars for big name chefs like Neil Perry and Heston Blumenthal yet all they can come up with for plebs in economy class is mummified sandwiches.


Airline food – expectation


versus reality.

Fortunately we reached Queenstown with only a few trips to the toilet and no need for complimentary airsick bag. The trip back to Sydney was more traumatic.

What should have been a simple three hour flight but it turned into a seven hour ordeal. We waited for a geological eon only to be told that our flight had to be diverted to Christchurch to ‘refuel’. Aren’t there computer systems in place to monitor this sort of thing?

Dadabs had a bitch to one of the ground hosties who was very attractive but not dressed like this.


Oh my! Come fly with me!


The young, slender but conservatively attired lady told us that we weren’t refuelling but rather ‘a mechanical fault’ had to be checked out. Mysteriously Queenstown airport did not have the expertise to deal with mechanical faults. WTF?

Nevertheless I was not not overly concerned until I saw the pilots. I am alarmed to report that dressed in their spiffy uniforms teamed with peaked caps and Rayban aviator glasses they were still NAWT HAWT!!!! Isn’t there a strict code to prevent this sort of thing from happening. I wouldn’t be needing that nail file after all.


Air New Zealand did not met  basic standards in pilot hawtness

Finally after waiting a second geological eon where mountains eroded to dust and continents shifted on tectonic plates, we boarded the fucking plane. But not before my redundant nail file was called out again by security.

This time there was in-flight entertainment. Huzzah! There were screens the size of pocket handkerchiefs on the back of the seats. Yay! The choice of entertainment whilst not being quite at Netflix level was still acceptable. Booyah! Unfortunately the screens were used to deliver a very, very lame safety video ( which featured Rhys Darby but still managed to be lame.)


Boo! Hiss! You’re a sell out Murray!

Mysteriously our seats were even narrower on the return trip. (Couldn’t have anything to do with all the wine and chocolate consumed in Queenstown). After watching several installments of the BBC’s War and Peace, a slice of televisual heaven that deserves to be viewed on a big mofo screen, hunger pangs set in.


Tsarist Russian crumpet deserves a big screen.***


These screens are not ideal for viewing Tsarist Russian crumpet.

The cabin crew rolled into action delivering hot meals to the passengers who had paid. Sadly precluding us. We were tormented by the smell of cooked chicken and beef. Our collective stomachs growled until we got the chance to purchase food. The choice was astounding – chicken sandwich, ham sandwich or emaciation. If it weren’t for stale ham sandwiches I may not be here to write this blog.

Of course my nine year old became nauseous. Which meant she spent the duration clutching the sick bag whilst our family, the people in the rows in front and behind us and the cabin crew willed her not to chuck. Admittedly everyone was nice about it.

When we finally got into Sydney under cover of darkness my husband was whining more than the kids. Actually the kids were quite happy to have spent six hours watching cartoons. My husband had spent the duration watching something featuring alien monkeys fighting with light sabers and yet he moaned..

I will think twice before I put my husband on a plane again.

Air travel – is that overseas trip really worth the pain?




  • Hows that for a 90s cultural reference?
  • Errrrmaaaagaaaaawd! The six hours of unrelenting visual ecstasy that is this BBC literary adaptation deserves its own blog post. Brilliant, Brilliant, Brilliant!!!!! Its got britches, knee high leather boots, side burns to die for, brocade uniforms – everything a cougar could possibly want.

PS: I have to apologize to my bestie who loved Ralph Fiennes (as I love Aiden Turner) until the Qantas incident.


12 thoughts on “Air travel sux

  1. Hahaha, tales of woe. For me, air travel is a nightmare as I’m phobic about it. You do NOT want to be sitting next to me on any type of plane journey (although looking at Orlando Bloom in that pic did make me think air travel could be bearable under certain circumstances). And yes, Ralph Fiennes (snicker), that was fun indeed. Hopefully your next experience up in the air will be incident free and embellished with scrumptious food (one can only hope).

  2. LOL. I don’t actually mind air travel. But six foot five husband hates it. We can’t afford anything but cattle class but he does occasionally get the exit row which means he’s less like an accordion and more like one of those little fold out fans. We managed to score premium economy on a Virgin flight once (an aircraft where premium actually meant something). It was great! Ruined the hubster though. Every flight we take will now require taking out another mortgage.

  3. My daughter is moving over to the UK next month, which means lots of long haul flights for us in the next few years, so much to look forward too, NOT!

  4. Bahaha. I block long distance travel from my mind! But granted I haven’t been overseas in a while so my travel was all pre-laptop, pre-ipad, pre-fucking-seat-back-fucking-screens, basically pre-fucking everything. So it’s no wonder I’ve blocked it all out.
    But those bastards who created the earth made other places pretty too. I bet you the deity/deities you believe in were in cahoots with the airlines and get an affiliate commission.

  5. When I worked for the Commonwealth Government and travelled overseas we got to travel Business Class and it’s amazing how quickly you get used to it. Most of my travel then was for work, but when I went somewhere (paid for myself) I felt depressed about sitting in Economy!

    Of course, I used to get very sick of air travel when I did it a lot. That changed a lot when I left that industry and I had no desire to travel anywhere. Ever!

  6. I can’t wait to go on a plain and not worry about children and read a book. I can’t remember what that feels like. I’m definitely not going on any flights till my youngest is older. I don’t want to be carting half the nursery with me.

  7. Ha I had forgotten about Mile High Ralph! Busy man.

    Your tiny screen Delta plane pic reminded me of literally the worst plane meal I ever had – Delta’s food is out-of-control vile. So grim.

  8. I hear you. I told my husband the other day that I am not ready to go any further than 2 hours on a plane until our youngest is at least 4!

  9. I’m the complete opposite. I love flying. Love, love, love it. I grew up flying in itty bitty 6-seater airplanes, firstly flown by my father, and then we lived in PNG and flew amongst humungous mountains to get anywhere. An airline jet is luxury in comparison to being squished with your knees around your ears, in between pesky little brothers who take joy in annoying the people closest to them.

    I’ve learnt to be fussy about my seating location (ahead of the wing, not behind), the kids don’t get a chance with the window seat, and that A380 plane from Melbourne to LA is a long haul dream among dreams. Because when you’re comparing a 6-seater Cessna to an A380, even economy is spacious!!

  10. I could not bear doing a long haul flight with my husband and children, it would do my head in. The piece of sanity that is left anyway.
    My sister in law had to break her ankle in Spain, for first class tickets home, courtesy of travel insurance. I’d rather stay home lol

  11. Hate aeroplane travel… I have no control… That is why I drink lots of champers #IBOTteam

  12. If I’m paying 13K Orlando bloom had better be included!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s