I recently started traveling for work. I had taken trips on planes before, but now that I travel frequently I realize how irritating it is to have a newbie flyer on the plane that doesn’t know the rules. There is a whole different kind of flying reserved for 5 a.m. business trips than when you are off for a week and taking a much-deserved vacation. Here are some handy tips for making your trip (and mine) go smoothly.
Check your bag
I know it’s a hassle, and you are trying to save every penny on this trip, but it’s $25. If you can’t lift your bag into the overhead bin: check it! If you do bring a carryon, make sure it fits the dimensions put forth by the airline. If you are a world class packer congratulations, but most of us aren’t, so maybe just check your bag.
It’s a pain, but there are some things that can make it worlds easier to get through the TSA line.
- Don’t wear knee high boots. We both know you look good in them, but 99% of the time TSA makes you remove your shoes, so maybe this time you can pack those bad boys.
- Don’t bring an entire picnic meal through security. I have seen people do this. I know you have to get to the airport super early and airport food is expensive, but maybe just bring a couple snacks. Don’t pack a picnic complete with plates because TSA will pull you aside and it’s no good for anyone. (some people have allergies; you are excused)
- Don’t bring knives, guns, pepper spray or bottles bigger than 3 oz. Honestly, you know better. You can Google the list of contraband items for TSA so just don’t.
- Have your license and boarding pass ready to go. Don’t be surprised when they ask for your ID. You will be asked multiple times, over and over again. Have it ready to go in a easy to reach spot.
- Be prepared to hate TSA. No matter how easy you make it on them, they will piss you off. It might be part of their job description honestly. When I’m prepared to take off my shoes and remove my laptop they tell me not to, and when I don’t they yell at me. Just be ready for hate.
When you are stuck in a sardine can with over 100 people consideration for others is crucial. Don’t bring smelly food on a plane. Don’t bring fish or Chinese food cause, honestly, it’s rude. I realize you just had a 15-hour layover and it’s dinnertime to you, but a sandwich will hold you over. Also messy food. Just say no to the Cheetos just this once.
Headphones mean no
Some of us are travelling for work and not on a big adventure. So when we have our headphones on, it means “do not disturb.” Sometimes we are big into the book we’re reading or the movie we’re watching or trying to sleep before a big meeting. Also if I fall asleep please don’t wake me up. If the plane is going down I’ll probably wake up on my own.
Ultimately flying should be enjoyable, but it rarely is, so do your part to keep the peace and what little sanity is left after TSA and follow these tips.