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Top 10 Fun Ways to Pass the Time Online When You’re Stuck Waiting

Tess Hansen By Tess Hansen March 22, 2022

Summary: Whether you’re waiting at the doctor’s office or getting an oil change, we’ve compiled 10 smart and easy ways to pass the time.

We all hate to wait, but luckily for you, there are tons of apps and resources out there that will make time fly. So whether you’re waiting to board a plane or you’re sitting in your dentist’s waiting room, here are some fun ways to pass the time!

1. Read

Whether you have a good ol’ physical book or an ebook, reading is a tried-and-true way to make time go by faster. If you have an eReader, download the Libby app — it automatically connects with your local library and allows you to download books instantly. Plus, you can read within the app or send the eBook to your Kindle or other eReader.

If you’d prefer to listen to the audio version of a book, Audible has one of the biggest audiobook libraries in the world. Sign up for a paid membership and enjoy it free for 30 days. Or, support indie bookstores by using Libro.fm. If you don’t want to pay, check out LibriVox, a free app whose audiobooks are recorded by their dedicated volunteers.

2. Listen to Podcasts or Music

Podcasts are one of the most popular ways to kill time. Some of the top trending podcasts of 2022 include The Daily from the New York Times, This American Life, Stuff You Should Know, Wait Wait… Don’t Tell Me!, and Radiolab.

Person holding a cell phone surrounded by app logos such as Libby, Audible, Spotify, and Duolingo

Or, you can probably find a podcast for your favorite show. For example, fans of The Office can check out The Office Ladies with Jenna Fischer and Angela Kinsey, AKA Pam Beesly and Angela Martin. The two give a behind-the-scenes look at some of your favorite scenes from the show. Prefer something a little spookier? Get your true crime fix with Serial, Crime Junkie, or My Favorite Murder.

If podcasts aren’t your thing, music is a surefire way to pass the time. Download Spotify, Apple Music, or any of the other music streaming platforms to access millions of songs in a snap.

3. Learn a New Skill

It’s never too late to learn something new. If you’ve ever wanted to learn more about coding, business, UX design, photography, music, or just about anything, take a free course from Udemy, edX, or Coursera. Or light up your brain with Lumosity — their fun cognitive games are designed to improve memory and problem-solving abilities.

4. Learn a Language

Waiting to board a flight? Now’s the ideal time to spruce up your language skills or learn a new language altogether! There are tons of apps out there specifically designed to help you master a new tongue, whether it’s Duolingo, Babbel, Pimsleur, Rosetta Stone, or Mondly. Plus, you’ll be able to find an app to fit your budget and schedule.

5. Play a Game on Your Phone

You know what they say: time flies when you’re having fun. And if you’re looking for the hottest game right now, look no further than Wordle. Players get six chances to figure out the five-letter word of the day. Guess the word correctly for multiple days in a row and you’ll start building up a streak!

Other classic games include Sudoku, Angry Birds, Candy Crush, Free Flow, Words with Friends, Wordscapes, and the New York Times’ Daily Crossword and Spelling Bee. For something a little different, Among Us has been a huge hit, as has GeoGuessr, the perfect game for geography buffs to see if they can identify a location from just one image.

Trending games are always changing, so keep an eye on the Apple App and Google Play stores. With so many to choose from, you’ll be sure to find the right one for you.

6. Watch TV

Today, it’s easier than ever to be entertained. Get all the top streaming services (Netflix, Hulu, HBO Max, and more) at your fingertips and binge-watch your favorite shows from wherever you are. Put on your headphones and get lost in your show… it’ll feel like no time has passed at all!

7. Use Social Media

Another easy way to make time slip past? Social media, of course! Keep up with your friends and family on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, or scroll through Pinterest to find recipes or home design inspiration. You can also scroll through your TikTok For You Page (FYP) for bite-sized videos by some of the best creators out there.

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8. Keep Up with the News

Stay in the know anytime, anywhere. Download all your favorite news apps right from the Apple App or the Google Play store and discover the latest news stories. You can even save a story in your phone or browser for later if a headline catches your eye but you don’t have time to dive in.

9. Practice Some Mindfulness

Sometimes it’s nice to just sit back and relax. If that’s more your speed, practice some mindfulness with a medley of mental health-focused apps like Headspace and Calm. Or if you’d like to do something with your hands, write in your journal, or doodle in an adult coloring book — it’s a proven technique for relaxing and taking your mind off of stress.

10. Plan Out the Rest of Your Day

Have a busy day ahead of you? Use this time to get your schedule in order either using your phone’s built-in notes or Todoist, an app that makes it easy to organize your personal and professional life.

Many of the apps mentioned here require a fast, reliable connection, so make sure yours can keep up. Discover EarthLink Mobile and find your plan on the nation’s largest 5G network. Staying entertained — and staying on top of your schedule — has never been so easy

Tess Hansen

Tess Hansen

Tess Hansen is a freelance copywriter based in Brooklyn. She graduated from the University of Washington with a BA in English Language and Literature. She writes about all things digital for EarthLink, including how to make your life easier (and safer) through tech.

See all posts from Tess Hansen.

Filed Under: Mobile

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