Let’s face it – airports and travelling by air can be a nightmare. There’s the stress of getting there on time, worrying about whether you’ve forgotten anything, the frustrations of dealing with all the confusing documentations, and the endless queues and security processes.
The truth is however, there is plenty you can do to make your experience at the airport much less stressful and, dare I say it, actually enjoyable. With that in mind, below are some of the best airport travel hacks.
If you decide to drive to the airport then this can actually end up being the most stressful part of your experience. Getting there might not be an issue but anyone who’s tried parking at an airport will tell you it’s no fun. By using valet parking, you can ensure a stress-free arrival, which is especially helpful if you’re travelling with kids.
2. Check-in online
This is easily one of the best airport travel hacks. Who wants to turn up to an airport 2 hours before their flight is due? If you check-in online then you cut down a lot of the waiting around time at the airport. Granted, to use this hack you need to be travelling fairly light so you can take your luggage on the plane with you but it’s well worth packing a few less items so you can do this.
3. Use a checklist
It can be tempting to give yourself too much credit and assume that you’d never forget something important, but even the best of us have our incredibly dumb moments where we get in the taxi to the airport only to get halfway there and discover our passport isn’t where we thought it was.
For this reason it’s always recommended to use a checklist. It doesn’t have to be anything fancy – just a simple note with all your most important items on it will suffice, although if you prefer there are many great to-do list apps out there.
4. Be prepared for security checks
How often do you see people getting to security points at an airport only to start scrambling through their bags to find their toiletries and small electronics? To avoid this, you should always have anything that needs to go through security packed separately so you can remove it easily when needed. Having all your toiletries in a clear, plastic bag is incredibly easy to do but will save you a good deal of time and fuss at an airport.
5. Buy seats next to the emergency exits
Few people would argue that the amount of leg room on a standard flight is adequate. Being squashed into a seat for duration of a flight is hardly a fun experience. The way to avoid this is by getting the seats located next to the emergency exits that have more leg room. Whilst you won’t be able to store anything under your seat, the extra leg room can be a godsend, particularly on longer flights.
6. Use a luggage porter service
Baggage claim is easily one of the most stressful parts of a typical airport experience. Having to fight past other people to get to the front of the queue to claim your luggage after a long flight is something that none of us want to deal with. In an attempt to help people avoid this experience, there are now a growing number of airports that offer a baggage porter service who’ll deliver your luggage to a specific address.
7. Pay for a lounge pass
It might seem like an unnecessary expense but having access to an airport’s premium lounge can make your experience much more comfortable. Depending on the airport, you’ll usually have access to a great seat, charging ports for your electronics and in some cases even a private shower and bathroom facilities.
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