Friday, August 26, 2005
I have some tips that I have accumulated for my clients. Some of them may not apply and some are humorous and should be taken lightly, so here goes:
Tips for travelers
General travel advice
• Make a note of where you parked your car at the airport. After a long trip, your memory will almost always fail you.
• Dump that hard-sided carry-on. A soft-sided bag has some give, so it can be crammed into tight spaces, but a too-big hard case will have to be checked.
• Forget the locks ~ the airlines randomly check the contents of luggage. If it is locked, they will break the lock (it has happened to me). Instead, I put a bright orange luggage strap around my luggage. This keeps it from opening unexpectedly and it also makes it easier to spot on the carousel.
• Stock up on zip-lock bags. You can use them for snacks, as doggy bags and as leak-tight carriers, and to protect important documents. I put all my lotions, cologne, etc. that may leak into zip-lock bags. This way, if they leak, they won't get on anything else.
• Join the airline’s frequent traveler club even if you don’t plan to fly on that airline ever again.
• Cross-pack with your travel companion. This way, if a piece of your luggage is lost you will still have clothes to wear.
• Never place any important document in the front seat pocket — especially not your passport!
• Always check that the airline personnel has your luggage tagged. My daughter saw her luggage going on the belt without the tag marking the plane # and destination. If she hadn't seen this who knows where her luggage would have ended up!
• Watch your bags. More bags are lost on the ground than in the air, so keep a close eye on your luggage, especially at the airport, in the hotel lobby, and at the curb. If you ever have a dispute with your taxi driver, make sure you get your bags out of the car before voicing your displeasure. And remember the number of the taxi in case you do forget something in it.
•Board last. The number-one hot spot is the jetway. There’s no air conditioning, and most of the time you’re stuck in a long line that barely moves. If you don’t need to board early to grab an overhead bin, stay in the cool gate area and wait until the gate agent announces the final boarding call.
• Visit the restroom before boarding the plane.
• Drink plenty of water, and bring your own bottled water if you prefer it. You might also want to bring your own food since airlines are getting away from offering food on their flights (except the long ones).
• Dab a little antibacterial ointment in your nose, use Airborne or saline sprayto help protect you from the myriad airborne contaminants circulating in the cabin.
• Take sanitary wipes or wet towels with you. You will always need to clean or disinfect something onboard.
• Match each alcoholic beverage with at least two glasses of water.
• Exercise and stretch. ( If you exercise and stretch, you will have more energy, and you won’t feel as beaten up after a long flight.)
• If you are allergic to cats, bring allergy medication. Passengers often bring cats onboard or carry dander on their clothes.
• Always, always check that there is a “barf bag” in the pocket in front of you. You might not get sick, but you never know about your seatmate.
• Pack a small toy or a bag of Goldfish or cookies in your carry-on — not for yourself or your kids to eat, but to quiet the screaming kid three rows back. Works every time and costs only pennies.
• Schedule your flight for the kids’ naptime, and keep the kids awake by any means possible until you get on the plane. The flight is so much more relaxing for everyone when the kids sleep through it.
• When kids are howling or staring at you from the seat in front of you, hand them a crayon and the sick bag with instructions to make a hand puppet.
• Wear comfortable slip-on shoes.
• Unless you are traveling with children, always ask for an exit-row seat. You’ll get more legroom. When choosing your seat, ask the customer service agent where she would sit.
•Wear noise-canceling headphones.
• Arrive early. You may end up going through extra security clearance. (We are almost always searched)
• Practice patience, and be prepared to test it abundantly.
• Remember that people are people: They have feelings just like you. They come from very different walks of life. Some don’t like to talk, while others need someone to listen.
• Bring or form a mental picture of your “happy place,” be it that perfect sunset on your trip to the Bahamas or your special loved one. It will serve as a reminder of the good things in life.
• Be the person you would most like to fly with.
• Bring a pen and paper. Write letters, keep a journal or jot down ideas or to-do lists.
• Listen to an audio book. It takes up more time than the in-flight movie, and is better exercise for your imagination.
• Bring a good novel or puzzle book - Sudoku!
And here is a site with great travel tips:
Please contact The Travel Bug Vacation Planners for your next vacation!
Posted by Mary McGrath at 9:08 AM