1. When in doubt, arrive early.
The last thing you want is to be running to catch your plane. Don’t underestimate the time you’ll need for connecting flights! With many large airports, you’ll need to consider the time it takes to navigate to your gate. I have written about other great ideas HERE.
2. Know the carry-on restrictions.
Save time when going through security by keeping in mind these important requirements for carry-ons:
- Ensure all of your liquids or gels are in 3 ounce or smaller containers (more than 3oz permitted in checked baggage).
- Place those containers in a 1 quart-size, clear plastic, zip-top bag.
- Place 1 bag only per traveler in the security bin for screening.
Also, be sure to check the maximum carry-on luggage sizes–they vary based on the specific airline!
3. Track your flight.
While no one wants to experience cancellations or delays, with weather conditions and unpredictable mechanical issues, it’s always a good idea to stay-up-to-date. Winter in the United States invariably will affect flights throughout the system, including those in the tropics. Just because you are vacationing near the equator, is no guarantee that you won’t have cancellations or delays. Along with airline specific apps, I also recommend other apps and alerts to help you stay informed about your flight schedule.
4. Layers, layers, layers.
Since you don’t know how warm or cold it will be on the plane, be sure to wear layers so you can effortlessly adjust to changing temperatures. A scarf can double as a blanket or even a pillow. Also, be sure to wear comfortable shoes that are easy to remove at security.
5. Have a travel ally.
Savvy travelers know they can book their own arrangements, but also know the value in having an ally in making those arrangements with a travel professional. When flight schedules, lodging bookings, and other travel related issues arise, its very convenient to call your ally, and have them work some magic in your behalf. They can be fixing your cancelled flight, or getting your hotel room back on track, while you find lunch. Based on your airport and flight times, a travel professional can help you by making suggestions on necessary airport arrival times. Working with a travel professional before your flight, means they can be there for you during your travels if anything goes awry. That peace of mind can really help you have a stress-free flight experience.