Taking a long flight to another part of the world is usually a sign of exciting times ahead (sabbaticals, anyone?), but the process of navigating through the airport and getting onto the plane can sometimes be stressful – and sitting in a contained space for hours on end can present its own set of challenges, too. Luckily, there are many things travelers can do to better prepare for their flying experience and ensure that the trip runs as smoothly as possible. We’ve compiled a list of flying tips for all of our readers.
1. Do Your Research When Buying a Ticket
Before you purchase your ticket, there are a few things you can do to make sure your trip goes as smoothly as possible. If you’re traveling to another country, confirm which foreign documents are required and make sure that everything on your end is up-to-date. For more information regarding entrance regulations, visit travel.state.gov/. Also be sure that you buy your ticket under the exact name as it appears on your ID to avoid any confusion or difficulties when navigating through the airport.
2. Pack Smart
Most passengers are able to travel to different cities without any issue, but there is obviously always a risk of checked luggage getting lost during the process. With that in mind, always keep essential items and valuables in your carry-on bag – this includes medication, wallet/ID, electronics, and other precious/non-replaceable items.
3. Prep For Boarding…Before You Get to the Airport
Anyone who has ever boarded a plane before can agree that getting through security can be a bit of a circus, so anything you can do to simplify the process will not only benefit you, but the people waiting in line behind you. To that end, minimize the amount of items in your pockets before you even leave for the airport, so you won’t be that one person spending 10 minutes emptying out loose change, receipts, and other various items. Things that you can’t stow away before leaving for the airport can be quickly transferred to your carry-on bag while you wait in line to pass through security.
4. Bring Your Essentials
If you’re going to be forced to sit in one spot for an extended amount of time, you should do your best to have everything you need for a comfortable and enjoyable flight within an arm’s reach. To that end, be sure to have a blanket or sweater with you in case the flight gets chilly. While airports are filled with many restaurants and kiosks that sell food and snacks, packing your own meal gives you the option to eat whatever you’d like – and not spend a fortune, too! Finally, keep your laptop/book/DVD player in an easily accessible place in your carry-on bag, and store that bag neatly underneath your seat; you want to ideally be able to take out and put away anything you’ll need to make the flight more enjoyable without having to move around much or block the aisle in the middle of a flight.