Working On A Plane: The Airplane As Your Office

Business travel very often involves long hours in flight to the city where your work will be done. For most business people, this is lost productivity time that can be torture if you cannot get work done in flight.

How often have you said to yourself or to a coworker, “That’s all right, I will just work on that on the airplane.” That is a noble intent but circumstances inside an airplane cabin, especially in coach, can make the fulfillment of that commitment hard to accomplish.

Businessman working on a plane.

Expectations For Working On A Plane

Like anything else, if you are going to redeem the time while you are in the air, you should come prepared with an agenda of work you can get done in that setting and with your expectations well in check before you even check in.

Let’s face it, the cabin of a domestic airplane is not designed for business productivity. You may have a myriad of distractions from crying babies to a talkative neighbor. The airline employees have quite an agenda of items to interrupt your time with and then there is the turbulence and the narrow seats that dictate that whatever you are going to get done is going have to be done in a place of very little space availability.

To expect that you will have the seat next to you to spread out your work or that this will be the flight of perfect peace and quiet is to set yourself up for frustration and disappointment. So to be prepared to achieve some level of productivity on an airplane, be aware of these limitations and design your work so you can use that time within those constraints, not in spite of them.

Block Out Distractions

A basic necessity to use to realize some level of concentration in flight is a good set of earplugs or a noise canceling headphone. You can use that device to pipe music to your mind that can be conducive to concentration and thought.

Now earphones sufficient to block out the kind of distractions you will encounter on an airplane will have to be pretty sophisticated. So don’t cut corners on this purchase. It will pay you back over and over as you use them to block out surface noise in the airplane cabin.

This one from Bose is an Amazon bestseller and even has Alexa built in!

Determine Your Goals

The best way to walk off of that airplane with a sense of accomplishment is to set your goals before you board and make them goals you can attain.

You cannot expect to be able to open up your laptop and work peacefully in coach. It is very possible you will be able to do that but you may find turbulence, an active population around you or other factors may make such work very difficult to do.

So to be sure, prepare a project to work on using your laptop but don’t be disappointed if it turns out to be too difficult to attempt. And above all avoid having a deadline you have to hit using the time during your flight to make up for lost time on your deadlines. That will only make the flight frustrating and result in an angry and worn out business traveler.

The Best Activities

The best form of work you can assign to yourself is analysis or reading. If you have a document or some documents to review, the confines of an airplane seat accommodate that work just fine. Business reading is easily the best form of work to do in flight.

Using those headphones to block out the world, you can lay back with a book, a business magazine or a report and take your time to study it or read lengthy blocks of that material during a long flight.

In a two to three hour flight, you can read entire chapters of a business book and come off the flight with a tremendous amount of food for thought to take into your businesses meetings at your destination.


It is possible to redeem the time in the air by accomplishing some solid work on the plane. But the key to getting success at that goal is to be realistic about what can be done in an airplane seat and tailoring your expectations and goals accordingly.

If you do that, you will be happy with how you used the time and the flight will go by much more quickly as well.

Can you do work on a plane?

Work on an airplane starts before you board. If you’re not sure which device to use, here are some tips to get started: If you’re planning on using an airplane Wi-Fi network, make sure that you charge up before you board. Although it’s not allowed to use laptops on planes, they are permitted mid-flight. In addition, many airlines offer Wi-Fi for free.

What are the ladies on the plane called?

Flight attendants are members of the aircrews of commercial and business jets. They work in various roles aboard different aircraft. Having the laptop in a carry-on bag is ideal for minimizing theft and keeping it secure. It also helps protect it from damage.

What is the highest rank for a pilot?

The Captain is the head of the plane and is usually in charge of the crew and passengers unless they are flying with a training captain. The area where an aircraft is parked, loaded, or refueled is known as the apron.

What are the guys called that direct planes?

Marshalls are responsible for directing an aircraft in the right direction. They do this by applying body signals and marshalling signals. Flight attendants make an average of about $56,000 a year.

Do air hostess have to be pretty?

Airlines generally require their flight attendants to have a well-groomed look that meets the standard of their industry. For women, they will also require a style that is appropriate for a professional environment. You need to appear for the national defense academy entrance exam, which is known as the NDA. As a pilot after 12th, you should have passed the science stream with 60% marks.

Can a female become a pilot?

Only 5% of pilots are women. The same percentage of women are in training as cadet pilots. A carry-on bag must fit under the seat or in an overhead bin. You may bring one or more personal items, such as a purse, briefcase, laptop, and so on, under the seat.

Can you pack a computer in checked luggage?

Most consumer electronic devices are allowed to be carried-on and checked baggage, such as mobile phones, smart watches, etc. You can also bring the graphic card in carry-on baggage. However, it is better if you have a proper packing material for the card.

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