Travel can be wonderful with all the new sights, new sounds and new adventures. It can also be chaotic and stressful. As such, we’re always looking for ways to make it a little easier on us – from awesome technology in our carry ons to a checklist of the 5 Things To Do 24hrs Before Your Flight.
Check In Online
In addition to securing your seat, there are a few others reasons to make sure to check in to your flight online. For starters, sometimes the airlines reassign seats to accommodate changes in equipment, which means you may not have the same seat you chose back when you booked your tickets. This has happened to me several times, and most recently I was separated from my 4 year old son and had to ask a kind hearted soul to switch seats with me on the plane. Even if the flight is full and you are unable to make any changes online – it’s better to know about this hiccup before hand so you can plan on getting to the gate a little earlier than planned to ask for help. Remember seat change requests are done on a first come basis, so try to get there at least 30 minutes before the flight begins boarding (1+ hour before take-off) to give the gate agent plenty of time to try and make the needed adjustment.
Charge It Up
It might be the nerd in me, but I always make sure all my devices and backup batteries are plugged in and charging the night before a trip. Also make sure any items you may want to download are done at home while you have wi-fi because even though your flight or airport may advertise that wi-fi will be available, I can’t tell you how many times I have been sorely disappointed with technical difficulties or canceled/rebooked flights without the same amenities.
Pack and Weigh Your Checked Luggage
Packing can be stressful, especially in a rush. It’s incredible how expensive it can be to pay for overweight luggage and when you are packing in a hurry, you often over pack. Major airlines can charge upwards of $100 and smaller airlines charge even more so save yourself some headache and use a list. Since most of us are creatures of habit, if you take the time to make a packing list once, you can use it over and over.
TIP: If you travel frequently, keep a “go” bag. For me, my most important item to pack (aside from all my technology) is my bathroom bag. While I can usually buy anything I forget, I have sensitive skin and thus am very particular about my face wash, lotions and makeup. Instead of having to repack my bath bag for every trip (and risk forgetting to grab something after taking a shower) – I simply always have it ready to just grab and go. It has “duplicates” of everything I use every day – my face wash, razor, hair ties, hair brush, toothbrush, toothpaste, shampoo, conditioner, sunscreen, lotion, nail file, nail clippers, safety pins, bandaids, and Advil. All I have to do is toss in my makeup bag and I feel comfortable knowing my “essentials” are always complete.
Yes, my life is thoroughly embedded in digital. However, I have learned that you should ALWAYS print out important documents to carry with you. NEVER rely on everything being stored on your phone or computer because batteries die and technology often gets lost or stolen. And depending on where you are going, sometimes your destination is still stuck in the low tech ages and will require that printed sheet of paper! (This was true for our recent wedding trip to the Dominican Republic). In many instances confirmations are everything! Not only are they proof of your reservation but they also offer pertinent information such as Hotel Name, Address and Phone Number in case you run into problems. Same thing goes for airlines and events. I keep all of my confirmations in a folder, sorted by the date I will need them.
Reserve Your Parking Spot
I quit hassling with airport parking services over a year ago when I found The Parking Spot and became a Spot Club Member. It’s many conveniences like free shuttle, covered parking, free luggage assistance, free bottled water and one free day for every 7 paid, completely won me over. I was already a big fan, but now they’re making things even more convenient with free reservations.
Free online reservations for Spot Club members is now offered at The Parking Spot’s Atlanta Hartsfield and LAX airport locations with continued roll out to all Parking Spot locations by the end of summer!
Make sure you have written instructions for your children, schools, daycare, pet sitters and anyone else left holding down the fort while you’re away. Don’t put this off until flight day because you will spend the entire time worrying about what’s going on at home if you forget. A duplicate of the important documents you are carrying with you (mentioned above) is a great thing to leave behind!
This post is brought to you by our friends at The Parking Spot. All opinions remain my own.