This year, I’ve traveled more than I have in probably the last five years combined. And it’s only June. I know for a fact, that one of the reasons that I stay relatively stress-free, outside of the anxiety that I have with being on planes (imagine that,) is that I always follow these 5 stress-free travel tips.
Carry-On as Much as Possible
Only pack what you can carry on. While I often travel on airlines that allow free checked luggage for their frequent fliers, I’m not about that waiting at the baggage claim life. I was also in the Navy, and we know how to roll and tuck and put things in shoes, and hats as if our lives depended on it. There are several good tutorials out there to show how to pack three weeks worth of clothes in a carry-on. Fortunately, I don’t have to do that again for a while, but just know that when I went to Malawi, I only brought my backpack and that was a two and a half week trip. I rolled like a champ! A while back, Kia sent me a carry on that is PERFECT for rolling through the airport, but the wheels only go one way, so we’re not really friends any longer. I’ve also upped my travel gear with the TLS Mother Lode backpack and the TLS Motherlode Junior from eBags.
Get Global Entry and TSA Pre-Check
Get TSA Pre-Check. It’s worth the $85 cost. Full stop. Your status also lasts for 5 full years, so you’re only paying $17 a year. TSA Pre-Check allows you to breeze through TSA without having to remove your shoes, your jacket, your laptop, or your airline approved liquids for extra screening. Just note, this is not a guarantee with every airline, so be prepared JUST in case you do have to go through the regular TSA line. For example, the TSA Pre-Check was closed for my most recent flight, and I had to go through the regular TSA line. I could still keep my shoes on, but had to remove my laptop.
Store Your Accessories Smartly
Have a great bag to wear, and keep your phone chargers on your person. I have one on my keychain, and several others (flat superchargers) that I keep in a pencil case as well. I only fear losing a full charge whenever I travel. Never when I’m at home. It’s weird like that. I also carry either my Baggallini hobo bag, or this Swiss Gear shoulder backpack. My sunglasses and fedora normally make an appearance during travel as well. Helps shade my forehead and my eyes for sure.
Wear comfortable clothing. I can not stress that enough. You want to be comfortable while you’re sitting waiting for your flight, ON your flight, and getting off your flight. There’s nothing worse than sitting for 2 or more hours and having your pants band dig into the soft part of your belly. Or so I’ve heard. I have a cute pair of compression socks that I wear while flying so that my feet and knees don’t hurt from becoming swollen because of air pressure. It helps also alleviate the discomfort in my knees and feet from sitting for so long.
Set alarms 3 minutes before it’s time for you to check in. I know that this doesn’t apply for every airline, but for the ones that do, do it. You’ll appreciate it. If you don’t like alarms, then go ahead and pay for early check in. It allows you to get a better seat, and to also ensure that you have a spot for your carry-on luggage to go.