#34 Planning Air Travel
Expat Aid Wokers love planning air travel.
As nomads, travelling all over the world is the essence of being an Expat Aid Worker. And as Expat Aid Workers like to travel to destinations (i.e. the field) that aren’t in the average travel brochure, they often have to take routes that double back on themselves, include several changes of airlines, fly on planes that are not entirely airworthy, and endure very long stop-overs.
The greater the combination of these variables, the happier the Expat Aid Worker becomes, as it adds to the sense of adventure and helps to establish credibility.
As a result, a true Expat Aid Worker should be able to double as a travel agent alongside his or her day job of saving the world, and will be able to tell you the quickest route and cheapest airlines that connect two cities that would normally have very little reason to be travelled between, such as Colombo and Dushanbe. Of course, the EAW will have already flown the route and will be sure to advise you on where to find your last cup of real coffee and wi-fi connection during transit before leaving civilisation.
If you’re really lucky, the EAW will throw in a flying-related anecdote that highlights his or her cultural sensitivity, such as the panic/hilarity of flying on an airline from a Muslim country that always insists on announcing that “inch’allah, we will be landing in Dhaka/Dakar/etc. in five minutes.”
Inevitably if you already took a flight, the EAW will point out that there is a quicker way to have done it that would have saved your NGO hundreds of dollars. That’s because they’re a better Expat Aid Worker than you, which of course has nothing to do with actual ability to carry out their day job.
But wait! It doesn’t end there: even if you’re not lucky enough to travel across the world to mainstream gender, or cross continents to promote community participation approaches, you can still play the Expat Aid Worker party game whereby you challenge each other to come up with the greatest variety of routes between two destinations that are very far apart. Bonus points awarded for knowledge of airport codes.
Now, get to practice and work on these five (warning, one of them cannot be done using an online booker):
Luanda [LAD] – Islamabad [ISB]
Yangon [RGN] – Gaborone [GBE]
Jakarta [JKT] – Tashkent [TAS]
Maputo [MPT] – Dili [DIL]
Hanoi [HAN] – Kinshasa [FIH]
Note: When discussing trips with Expat Aid Workers it is unseemly to ask them to estimate their carbon footprint.