As a pretty regular flyer I’ve experienced both the good and bad sides to air travel. Read on for some tips to make flying fun and stress free.
Be prepared! There is nothing wrong with being that person who double checks everything. Make sure you’ve packed everything you need. Print off your boarding passes or check in early online if you can. Do as much as you can before you get to the airport. It’ll save you time and stress.
Know where you’re going! If you’ve never flown before google the airport. Make sure you know how you’re getting there and what you need to do once you are there. Long term parking, short term parking, or just a drop off zone? There are multiple ways to get to the airport, figure out which is the best for you, preferably before the day of your flight. And know where you need to go once you’re inside, and head straight for it. Getting a coffee or a picture of the sunrise can wait, go drop your bags off and check in!
Be early! So just in case you didn't do that good of a job researching and you end up at the wrong terminal, you have time to make your way to the right one. And those drop off lines, especially during peak hours, they can be a nightmare, you'll need time for that too. There is also a cut off period for luggage, so check that before your flight as well. Unless you plan on living out of your hand bag for the duration of your trip.
Be ready for security! Act natural. Try not to be one of those people that totally hasn’t done anything wrong but is sweating because they see all the security staring at them. Oh, and do not pet the security dogs, no matter how cute they are. Have your carry on bag and items ready. Double check before you pack what you can and cannot take on to the airplane. There is nothing worse than getting to security and realising the tube of toothpaste you packed is too large and watching them throw it away. AND now you’re gonna have stinky breath for the remainder of your flight, ew.
Be respectful! Once you’ve taken your seat introduce yourself to the people next to you, especially if it’s a long flight! A little politeness and small talk never hurt anybody. Here’s a simple conversation starter, “Heading home or getting away?” Don't forget the flight attendants too. Using your manners when they provide you food and drink is easy and it is something that will make them feel a little better about being at work. If you want to be even more daring, use their name too, they should all have a badge on.
Pay attention to the crew! Yes, the safety demonstration gets repetitive, and everyone’s probably seen parts of it in movies or on previous flights, but remember what my first tip was? Be prepared! Listening to the crew will help you in the case of an emergency. And they’ll also tell you when you get snacks, and who doesn’t like snacks?
Stay hydrated! Airplanes are notorious for being cold and having no moisture in the air. You will get thirsty! To make travel easier on your body drink water, and lots of it.
Dress appropriately! Like I just mentioned, airplanes generally lean towards the cool side so wear layers. A light jacket for the summer months and a heavier one for the cooler months. And compression items are no joke. If you don't want to walk off your long flight looking swollen and stiff, I'd invest in some good compression pants and socks.
And lastly, relax! Bring a book, or watch a movie. Have a nap or listen to music. Flying is easy, all you’ve gotta do is sit there. Fasten your seat belt and enjoy the ride!