1) Do NOT under any circumstances, show up less than 30 minutes before boarding time begins at the designated gate.
2) Try to avoid making stops to your spouse’s work to pick up the jacket and headphones he forgot to bring home. This delay will cost you more than a new jacket and headphones in airport food prices alone, not to mention the time you can never have back. Plan ahead, make a list or do without.
3) Bring some snacks in your carry on luggage. Preferably healthy ones.
4) Wear comfortable and sensible clothes and shoes.
5) Pack all chargers for cell phones, laptops, tablets etc. In your carry on luggage. Preferably in small zippered bags so they don’t get tangled and you can find them easily.
6) Also, make sure you have all medications with you and not in your checked luggage. Luggage gets lost or sometimes it gets to the final destination 12 hours before you do.
7) If you are traveling with children, especially those under five or six, bring an adult to be assigned to reach infant or toddler because babies require a lot of care, and once they have learned to walk, they tend to run off unexpectedly. Trust me this is a parent’s worst nightmare, so admit you need help and bring it with you.
8) Know where the restrooms are, and wash your hands each time you visit them because anything less is just gross! Hand sanitizer is great AFTER you wash your hands, not instead of!
9) Wear long pants because it may be chilly and you just don’t know what has been touching the seats in the waiting areas or plane. Better to ruin a pair of pants than developing a rash on your lower body.
10) Wear or bring a jacket, preferably with zipping pockets because it may be cold or you may want to wad it up for a pillow and you wouldn’t want anything falling out of your pockets as you rush around the airport.
11) Be patient, polite and thoughtful of your fellow passengers. Nobody enjoys a sourpuss who complains about everything.
12) Get plenty of sleep and do whatever is needed to keep your children from getting fussy. No one wants to hear kids whining, crying or screaming. You, as a parent, don’t need the added stress either. Upset or badly behaved children just add tension to an already stressful situation.
When you go through security or leave any seat or area, check carefully to be sure you didn’t leave ANYTHING behind. I can’t tell you how many announcements we heard about keys, Apple watches, or other belongings that were left behind.
We even heard one where a person was asked to call the rental car company because they needed their car key back!That’s it. Thirteen tips to help you as you travel in honor of the Friday the 13th I spent in the local airport waiting over 13 hours for a fight out to start our vacation. It all turned out well enough and it gave me the info to write this post to help others.
Best seatmates: 8-year-old Jake and his mother, Tammy. It was truly a pleasure sharing a flight with both of them.
Best line given by a flight attendant: Bottoms up or give it up!