If I were to expand upon this definition based off my own life and experiences, I would describe it as the urge to travel and see as much of the world as possible. The desire to be on a plane at any moment in time. I constantly have the urge to travel, explore, and discover new places. I have a list a mile long on my phone of all the places I want to go, just like a lot of people do I imagine. But, one of the not-so-fun parts that go hand-in-hand with travel is airports, train stations, all the works. Those aren’t very fun.
I love flying on a plane, and even more so, flying solo. It makes me feel so independent. The one thing I do dread is the mess of the airport. It’s such a hassle and never the highlight of your trip. As I sit here waiting for my plane to board, I came up with 11 hacks to help any person feel like the most experienced pro-traveler around.
1. A backpack is your best friend. It fits everything you will need on the plane ride, seriously you can stuff so much in there, and it will still fit in the space under the seat in front of you for easy access. The best part is that it goes easily on your back so you are hands free when ever you have to walk around.
2. Don’t bring your purse on the plane. Put that in your luggage and take only what’s necessary out of it and put them in your backpack. This way, you won’t have to worry about your many credit cards, just one and maybe some cash. But make sure to not forget to grab your id. This way, you aren’t holding on to that and any other bag you may be carrying. This will make for a much easier flight.
3. If you’re going to get something to drink, get it early. This way, you have plenty of time to use the airport bathroom if you need to before you start boarding and can avoid that plane bathroom like the plague. I’ve never been in one and would like to keep it that way.
4. Put your hair up. That should be the least of your issues as you’re battling the security lines and rushing for a window seat. Ain’t nobody got time for that. Plus, trying to put your hair up while you’re sandwiched between two people is next to impossible.
5. Also, put your coat in your suitcase. You won’t need it on the plane and shouldn’t have to feel uncomfortable the entire flight as you fidget with it in your hands, or sweat to death from wearing it. Once you get to the airport (if it’s cold where you live) jam it in your luggage before it gets checked, then when you grab it at the baggage claim, just pull it right out. Less bulkiness = less stress.
6. Layers, layers, layers. No matter what time of year it is, you never really know how you are going to feel on the plane and trekking around the airport. Running around to find your boarding gate will spike up your body temp, but sitting waiting for two hours will cool you down. Your best option is layers on layers. A t-shirt with a sweater, or a tank with a zip up sweatshirt. This way, you can easily adjust depending on how you’re feeling.
7. Ensure comfort. Make sure to wear comfortable clothing. For me, that’s leggings and a flannel. It’s my go-to travel outfit year-round. I can move around easily and feel cozy all day long.
8. Wear shoes that are easy to get off. But don’t forget socks. I always cringe as I watch bare-footed people walk through the security line only imagining how dirty the floors must be. I always opt for either a sneaker or zip up boot. Something that is easy and quick to take on and off, but that won’t leave me without socks on the airport floor.
9. Get there early. This should be a given, but always budget more than enough time to drive to the airport, check in, go through security, and find your gate. I’d rather be early, relaxed, and situated than rushed and frazzled.
10. If you are unfamiliar with the airport or airline, find an attendant. You’ll be a lot more relaxed if you ask them how certain processes, boarding for example, works. It’s better to be informed than confused and anxious.
11. Leave yourself a note. Always pack your suitcase the night before so you have plenty of time to think of things you might have forgotten. This, of course, leaves certain items out of your suitcase that you can’t pack yet. Write yourself a note and place it somewhere you have to look in the morning. I always put mine right on my suitcase but other alternatives are on your house keys or phone.
So, there you have it; eleven hacks that will leave you feeling like the savviest traveler out there. I know I certainly feel savvy as I sit here writing microeconomic index cards on a plane. Hopefully, you’ll have better plane activities than me and not a major exam in a week. Now go book your ticket and embrace that wanderlust feeling.
Featured image via Unsplash