Whether you are flying for the first time or someone racking up frequent flyer miles, air travel is never easy. To make sure your trip goes as smoothly as possible, there are few things you can do to improve your overall travel experience. Here are three of many examples to help you:
- Dress For The Occasion
One of the largest issues, if not the biggest issue, is that security checks can make things unpleasant very fast. Nowadays you need to take off your shoes, belt, coat, scarf, gloves, hats, jewelry, etc… Make sure you plan ahead here and only wear what is necessary.
Are taking a long trip? Make sure you’re wearing clothes that you feel comfortable sleeping in on the plane. This alone can make your entire trip feel great because, well, you slept through it! Try to keep your sleeping limited to being on the plane though…
…so you don’t sleep through your boarding time!
Do what you can to save time at security checkpoints. Try not to pack more than what you need for your trip. The more luggage you have, the longer and more unpleasant your experience becomes. This includes both check-in and carry-on items. If you have lots of check-in luggage you are likely going to run into the problem of having your luggage hand searched which simply and quickly turns into a hassle for you, if you have too much.
The same thing goes if you have too much carry-on luggage. The more you have, the higher the risk of having to be pulled aside and have someone go through your personal belongings. At the same time, make sure all the items of your carry-on luggage are actually allowed on the plane. Do you have a pocket knife you always carry? Maybe a lighter?
Stick all of those types of things in your check-in luggage, or they will be confiscated at the security checkpoint before you are even in the terminal. Anything that can be used as a weapon will be taken from you, without question.
Always make sure your luggage is clearly labelled as yours. The last thing you want is someone grabbing luggage that’s yours by mistake. This will also help you spot your luggage quickly as it comes around on the belt.
- Time Management
If you’re running late from the very start of getting to the airport, it’s going to multiply the stress of everything mentioned above. Plan to arrive about two hours before boarding to give yourself enough time to get through all the checkpoints and any hiccups that might arise.
It is better to have too much time than too little. You don’t want to find yourself running from one side of the airport to the other.
Managing your time is especially important for those who are disabled. Have you called the airline to make sure all the right accommodations have been made? Make sure you confirm wheelchair service at check-in. Airlines need to know specifically if you need to be pushed to the gate, AND if you need a wheel chair onto the plane itself. You may have wheelchair with someone to push you across the airport, but there is a different wheelchair service for those can’t walk any sort of distance onto the plane itself. Any one in a wheelchair will be the first one on (even before first class!), but the last off the plane as well.
The bottom line in making your air travel easier is planning ahead and using time management. Stick to the basics when it comes to what you need to wear and packing as light as you can. Double check all your departure times and make sure leave yourself enough time on the front and back end of you flight. These three simple tips can help make your trip feel a little less taxing.