The Weary Traveler

Weary Traveler, by *tinadelarosa

Weary Traveler, by *tinadelarosa

The alarm went off at 6am. What time was it back home? 4am? 9am? He could never remember what states were on what time, nor could he always remember where he woke up.

For the life of the seasoned business traveler, this happens a lot. Morning after morning in hotel rooms, day after day at conference centers, minutes upon hours waiting in line.

Waiting In Line(s)
Oh…the lines. They long, arduous minutes spent waiting to check in. The minutes tick by slowly as each person is methodically led to a check-in station, only to not have their ticket ready. Or not be on the list at all. Or not be in the right place.

But not our guy. Our guy had his ticket on his smartphone. He had registered appropriately, given all of his information and even checked his email when he woke up. He had his ticket, he was prepared.

So why did he have to wait in line? Surely he could be enjoying a quick breakfast or even sitting alone with a cup of coffee. Or maybe he could be making a new friend or be introduced to a potential client.

What Do You Do While Waiting?
He tried to make small talk in line, but everyone else was as frustrated as he was. They wanted out of their metaphorical cage. They wanted to be free of the stanchions marking their path. Some of them were also prepared. They had their tickets marked with QR codes. So why were they being punished with another long wait?

Then he heard a commotion a few people ahead of him. People were getting out of line. He saw a man in an EventDay hat scanning smartphones with his own, and then directing people to pick up their badges at the end of the counter.

These people had escaped the line. They were special, right?

The EventDay-hat-wearing man then appeared in front of our weary traveler.

“Good morning, sir! Might you have your ticket with QR code either printed out or on your smartphone?”

He did, and held out his phone with the QR code displayed. The man with the EventDay hat lined his own smartphone above the traveler’s and the traveler heard a beep.

“That’s it! Thanks for checking in. You can pick up your badge and event bag at the end of the counter. If you walk over there now, they will call your name when it’s ready.”

The traveler picked up his bag and walked to the counter. His name was called and he accepted his badge with lanyard. 30 seconds after being scanned by the man with the EventDay hat, our traveler was checked in.

Extra Time?
The conference didn’t start for another 45 minutes. What ever would he do with that spare time? Maybe he’d meet a friend, maybe he’d shake a client’s hand, or maybe he’d have another cup of coffee.

Maybe he’d sleep in next time.

What would you do with an extra 45 minutes?

(Featured image courtesy of Ben Beiske)