Flying is an amazing and very exciting thing! I’ve been travelling between the United States and Europe for almost 20 years. I would like to share my experiences and some useful tips that you absuletely must do before you board a plane.
- Stay up to the minute. You shouldn’t depend on your airline to let you know when there’s a delay. Sign up for text and e-mail alerts with the airline.
- Score a prime seat. Besides the traditional check-in at the airport, your airline can allow you to check-in online from anywhere with internet access. They usually open at least 24 hours before your scheduled flight. By checking-in online, you can select your preferred seat in advance, quote your frequent flyer number for mileage accrual, inform the airline how many bags you are intending to check-in thus saving time at the airport.
- Be sure that your carry-on is really a carry-on. Some domestic carriers have started enforcing a stricter size limit for carry-ons. So if you want to avoid having to gate-check (and pay for) your bag, know your airline’s size restrictions before you leave home.
- Size up your toiletries. Carry-on liquids, gels, and aerosols have to be 3.4 fluid ounces or less and fit in a clear, quart-size bag. You can pack them at home to avoid the stress at the TSA.
- Take your food. Most airlines/flights allow you to bring your own food. I always take some healthy bars and nuts, plus some other snacks with me.
- Choose a vegetarian or other special meal at least 48 hours before your flight. You get fed before anyone else, plus you can avoid anything too greasy and stodgy.
- Dress smart. To move through airports with ease and emerge from a flight unrumpled, stick to wrinkle – free fabrics. For overnight flights, I always take a good cashmere wrap or sweater against the air-conditioned cabin as the blankets they provide are thin and the plane can get very cold.
- Try the airport lounges. After a long flight from the USA to Europe, I love going to a lounge and relax there for a couple of hours. The lounges offer free Wi-Fi, snacks, drinks, comfortable sofas, and some of them showers and suites as well.
Traveling by plane is so much fun. Don’t just try to get to your destination as quickly as possible. Travel more slowly, relax and enjoy your flight!
Marianna Jackson / Las Vegas, NV