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Here's how I prepared for my 15-hour long-haul flight to Hong Kong

Plane leaving Philadelphia International Airport.
Philadelphia International Airport.DANIEL SLIM/Getty Images

Hi from Hong Kong! Before I share how I survived my 15-hour flight, I have to let you in on my personal Q2 challenge: I'm determined to eat less ultra-processed foods. We asked a nutritionist about his favorite go-to grocery store snacks, and you'll be surprised at just how easy it is to eat better.

For more ways to improve your life, keep scrolling.

On the agenda today:

But first: Let's go halfway around the world.


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aerial stock photo of a plane
The woman was arrested after running onto the tarmac at Canberra Airport in Australia on Wednesday.Getty Images

Dispatch

Long-haul flights can be a lot

I was prepared, though — or so I thought. Before I boarded my flight to attend Art Basel in Hong Kong, which is returning in a bigger way post-pandemic, I read what BI's travel reporters have been documenting for the past few years.

I knew to wear layers because the plane can be cold at 34,000 feet in the air.

I knew to download podcasts in case my in-flight entertainment didn't work. (Thank goodness it did. I finally got to watch Greta Gerwig's "Barbie." And yes, America Ferrera's monologue moved me to tears, just like everyone else on the set).

I knew to wear comfy clothes and pick an aisle seat.

But let's face it, long-haul flights are still just that: very long. What got me through it was having patience and knowing I'd wake up in a city with amazing food, great art, and good weather.

It made those sluggish 15 hours — and a bit of jetlag — worth every second.


A graphic showing Mastercard and Visa credit cards on a green background with dollar signs.
Picture alliance/Getty Images; Jenny Chang-Rodriguez/BI

Credit-card points get upended

Swiping your credit card for points might get a lot more expensive.

A recent settlement between two of the biggest credit card networks — Visa and Mastercard — and US merchants focuses on the fees retailers pay for handling transactions. Under the agreement, the fees, known as interchange, would be lowered and capped for a few years.

Another part of the settlement allows merchants to charge consumers more for using specific credit cards. That could be a blow to cards that offer better cash-back benefits and rewards since they typically come with higher interchange.

The new era of credit-card points

Read more:

You may have to pay more at checkout when using your Visa or Mastercard


man on a motorcycle driving in forest city
Forest City in southern Johor is one of the most infamous developments in Malaysian history.Marielle Descalsota/Business Insider

Ghost town glow-up

Malaysia's Forest City had aspirations of being a "living paradise" with $100 billion spent developing the area with luxury high-rise condos and villas. But the dream never materialized, and the Chinese developer behind the project defaulted as the city turned into a ghost town.

Now the city has reimagined itself as a tourist destination, with a waterpark, an artificial beach, and a golf course.

Business Insider's Marielle Descalsota spent 48 hours in Forest City to see how much has changed.

Malaysia's $100 billion ghost town is trying to pivot


Rising Black country artists with Beyonce
Parkwood; Daniel Chaney; Alexa Campbell; Henry Ammann; Alyssa Powell/BI

The Beyoncé effect

In February, Beyoncé became the first Black woman ever to reach No. 1 on Billboard's Hot Country Songs chart with her single "Texas Hold 'Em."

Her hot new album "Cowboy Carter" was just released yesterday — and five Black country artists, two of whom are featured on the 27-track project, unpacked its impact.

"Buckle Bunny" singer Tanner Adell, who's featured on "BLACKBIIRD," told BI that she's "grateful" to Beyoncé for enticing more people to dig into the genre. Shaboozey, whose voice is on two songs, says he hopes this moment isn't a mere trend, but a turning point.

Here's what country's rising Black stars are saying.


An hourglass in front of a blue background
Javier Zayas Photography/Getty Images; Jenny Chang-Rodriguez/BI

What to do with our free time

The average American has more free time than they might realize, and they're having a tough time figuring out what to do with it.

According to one estimate, Americans actually have about four to six hours of leisure time every day. But screen time, especially watching television, sucks up a majority of the hours.

And there's also a societal aspect to us eschewing leisure time, as many Americans pride themselves on being busy.

Americans have more leisure time than they realize.


A television with an interference screen
saravuth-photohut/Getty, Tyler Le/BI

What we're watching this weekend

"A Gentleman in Moscow ": The first episode of Ewan McGregor's historical drama is available on Paramount+.

"Lisa Frankenstein": Zelda Williams, Robin Williams' daughter, makes her directorial debut in a fresh take on the "Frankenstein" story on Peacock.

"Is It Cake?": The show about hyper-realistic cakes is back for a third season on Netflix.

See the full list


More of this week's top reads:


The Insider Today team: Joi-Marie McKenzie, editor-in-chief, in New York. Jordan Parker Erb, editor, in New York. Dan DeFrancesco, deputy editor and anchor, in New York. Lisa Ryan, executive editor, in New York.

Read the original article on Business Insider