My job requires me to travel occasionally. Before this job, I hated the airport. It was stressful, I didn’t have control and it was just overall miserable. I’m sure a lot of you can relate. However, over the past year, I have definitely streamlined the process and have gotten to the point where airports aren’t that bad at all. Here are some of my tips to making your travel days less stressful and more enjoyable (or at least tolerable).
- Get TSA pre-check: If you do any type of travel beyond a once a year vacation, invest in TSA pre-check. You don’t have to take your shoes off, or take out any electronics. Plus, the lines are usually a lot shorter!
- Download your airline’s app: Every airline that I’ve flown has an app that allows you to check in and download your boarding pass. Usually you can do it 24 hours ahead of time. So if you’re not checking any bags, you don’t have to stand in line, and you don’t have to worry about managing a boarding pass from the check in to the gate.
- Have a pocket or somewhere specific in your bag for your ID, wallet, etc: I have a specific pocket in my purse that my ID, my phone and my wallet go in. That way when you get to TSA or to the gate, it’s super easy to grab what you need and get on your way. Also, use Apple pay or Android pay and easily pay for coffee or food or whatever after getting through security. That way you don’t have to try to find your wallet.
- Use curbside check-in when available: If curbside check in is open, definitely utilize it! The lines are usually much shorter, and you don’t have to carry your large bags throughout the terminal.
- Have all your devices fully charged: Electrical outlets are usually in short supply at most airports. If your phone, laptop, etc. are fully charged, you are free to sit wherever you want, and you don’t have to mess with any cords.
- Get anything out of the bag that goes in the overhead compartment before you sit down: This is especially important if you don’t have an aisle seat. There’s no reason to interrupt your seat mates. Airplanes have pockets in the seat in front of you that you can put a book or tablet in, so that you don’t have to get into your bag during your flight.
- Manage any layovers ahead of time: If you aren’t lucky enough to have a direct flight, make sure you know ahead of time what is going to be happening. Know the gate you’ll be disembarking and what gate your next flight is at, as well as how much time you have to get there.
What are some of your best travel hacks for staying organized at the airport when traveling? Will you use these tips? What can you add to make your travel less stressful?