6/30/09

Travel Tips from a Flight Attendant...

My tips from years of Flying:

Luggage:

-Multi-bag stackers are a must when traveling with children. The strap allows you to pull 4 suitcases with one hand.


-Travelon Comfort Grip Luggage Handles allows the palm to face the body while walking which relieves strains caused by the standard handle on a roller bag.


-Put your name on the inside and outside of your luggage.  If your name tag comes off and luggage is lost at least your airline can contact you.  Use a sticky label on the inside with your home address, destination address and phone number.

-Tie a bright scarf on your luggage so it's easily recognizable or buy bright colored suitcases.

-Weigh your bags to avoid surcharges... buy a luggage scale.

-Safe Skies Luggage Locks can be opened by TSA if you check your bags.

Packing:
-Put a dryer sheet in luggage to help your clothes smell fresh.

-If you travel a lot keep packing list for "weekend", "beach", and "overseas" vacations (including all of the electronics you'll need).  This will save you time making another list and you won't forget anything.    

-Bring disinfecting wipes in your carryon.  The tray tables aren't cleaned during the day and their also nice for hotel room remote controls, etc.

-Put an outfit in your travel companion's bag so you'll have a change of clothes if one bag gets lost or stolen.

-If your going on a beach vacation put one bathing suit in your carryon (incase bags go missing).

-Don't pack medication in checked bags put it in your carryon.

-Roll your clothes to save space.

-Pack a duffle bag for souvenirs on return flights.

-Organize chargers in your eyeglass case.

-Bring a light sweater or pashmina on your flight. Many airlines have removed pillows and blankets.

-I always pack a small cross body purse for layovers.  It's big enough for a water bottle but still light weight.

-Wash your clothes during your stay so you can take less clothes.

-Wear your bulkiest clothes and heaviest shoes on your flight.

-Protect your clothes from dirty shoes with travel shoe bags (or shower cap).

-Pack a travel laundry bag to separate your dirty and clean clothes.

-Use a pill container to organize jewelry.

-Leave your hair dryer at home (most hotels have them).

-Prevent messy spills by putting saran wrap under lids.

-Check for proper plug adapters before leaving the country.

-Pack earplugs.  I remember staying in London at the worlds loudest hotel.  Ear plugs would have been nice.

-When traveling with children, pack a small nightlight.

-Bring enough diapers for your flight then buy a package when you get to your destination… to save space.

-I pack baby clothes for each day in separate bags then put dirty clothes back in… makes washing easy when I'm back home.


-I hide activity books for return flights (for our daughter).

Security:
-Carry a photocopy of your passport or scan it on an e-mail that can be pulled up if needed.

-Keep emergency and credit card contact numbers on an e-mail.

-Put money and credit cards in seperate locations incase stolen.

Airport:
-Take a picture of your parking lot number (on cell phone).  Amazing how much  you can forget when rushed.

-Know the three letter airport code of your final destination.  That way you'll know if your bag will be meeting you. :) 

-Check to see if the Airport your flying through offer's a family lane at the security checkpoint... what a blessing when traveling with children!!!

-Don't empty your babies bottle before going through security.  They will test it after going through the security check point.

-Ask airline employees where the best food is... if you have time it's sometimes in a different terminal.   

-Let your kids wander the airport to get their wiggles out before your flight.  I once saw a family with a jump rope... Even took a picture of it, click here. ;)

-If your traveling with several children have them wear a matching bright shirt.  I learned this from my sister...  She has three young boys close in age and always has them in yellow shirts.

-Have children use the restroom in the gate area before boarding the plane.

-If your picking someone up from the airport that might need extra assistance go to the ticket counter and ask for a special document that allows you to go through security and meet them at the gate.


-Get picked up at the Departure concourse rather than Arrivals.  It's less chaotic.  


Food:
- Check to see if you'll get food on your flight. If not plan ahead.

- Carry energy bars, granola bars, fruit leather and trail mix (healthy snacks). I always bring instant oatmeal in my bag.

- Buy a large bottle of water past security when traveling on long flights or bring an empty water bottle and fill it past security.

Flight:
-Before your next flight read your children books about airplanes to help them understand what's going on.  My daughter loves the book "The Noisy Airplane Ride"... helps children understand the different noises they'll hear.  This will also get them excited for their plane ride.


-Try to keep your child awake in the car on the way to the airport… if your wanting a quiet flight. :)

-The smoothest ride on a plane is the front or near the wings.  The bumpiest ride is in the back.  That is where most flight attendants get injured during turbulence.

-Put all of your small important necessities you'll need during your flight in a large ziplock bag in your carryon.  That way you won't have to dig through your bag for everything and spend more time in the aisle.
  
-Have your baby drink his or her bottle just before takeoff to help prevent ear pain... Give children gum to chew.

-If your child is experiencing severe ear aches... Ask the flight attendant to soak napkins in hot water.  After wringing the water out it's placed on the bottom of a cup and placed over the child's ear.  This will help reduce pressure fast.

-I always hide toys from my daughter and bring them out during the flight.  I stop by the dollar store or get new coloring books before our trip.

Happy Travels-

8 comments:

Traytable said...

Best tip I ever learned: write your name, email, destination & cell # on a piece of paper. Photograph it with your digicam. Perhaps offer a reward for its safe return.

Copy this photo to the start of every memory card in case either camera or card is lost/stolen. Increases the chances of getting it back.

I also take a photo before closing my luggage so I know what it looked like & for insurance claims. (For holidays, not for duty)

Blogging Mama Andrea said...

Excellent suggestions! I'm a avid traveler but I loved your links for tags and you reminded me of some thing I'd forgotten. Since I'm hitting the road alone with two kids on a Friday for an 8 hr flight I guess I better do some shopping!

dutchbaby said...

Wow! That's what I call service! Thanks for doing this so quickly. Aren't you in Hawaii right now?

I chased each and every link; all are great suggestions. I was unfamiliar with the shoe socks and I'm going to buy a multi-bag stacker too.

Postcards and Coasters said...

Traytable, thanks great tips!

Blogging Mama, good luck! 8 hrs with 2 kidos by yourself. Oh my!!

Dutchbaby, I'm leaving soon! Yea!!

Prêt à Voyager said...

my biggest challenge in moving to paris is the luggage weight requirements. i think i probably should invest in a luggage scale.

as for bags, marshalls is always a great place for a good cheap one :)

great tips!
anne

Bush Babe said...

This is an awesome list - I am totally booking-marking it for my next overseas endeavour (whenever that may be!).

And Traytable's suggestion is a ripper too.

:-)
BB
PS Have you done a Down Under review anywhere here??

Postcards and Coasters said...

Hi Bush Babe... I don't think I've written about Australia. I do love it there! I don't think I've ever met a group of people who travel more than the Aussies! I sometimes feel like I should have been born there. :)

My Castle in Spain said...

these are great tips ! and i also take note of Tray table's tip.
until now, i've always been lucky with my luggage, except once when flying from New York to Brussels (one suitcase had been astray)

Have a great vacation !