Check the airline’s website for instructions on how to check in
Yes, we know: it’s boring, and if you are anything like us we suspect you don’t always feel the urgency (or desire) to visit your airline’s website to check in before the date of departure. Having to rummage through your inbox to find the confirmation email, trying to check in about 10 times (before realizing you can only do it after a certain date), finally managing to access the webpage, making sure the right small boxes remain unchecked to avoid additional options, calling your partner at work to enquire about the expiration date on their passport, and fighting with your printer that always picks the best time to malfunction …. is not exactly pleasant, we can assure you.
But it is an important step, as it will keep you from getting stuck in long queues at the airport. No, you can’t always foresee whether cab drivers are going to be on strike, whether your alarm clock is not going to ring that morning, or whether Robert is going to forget where he left the car keys. And that’s why -believe us- that additional time will come in very handy!
Don’t leave packing to the very last minute
Some airlines still follow strict guidelines when it comes to baggage size and the number of permitted pieces of cabin baggage. So if you want to prevent having to leave your favorite beauty products behind because they’re larger than 100 ml, ending up with your suitcase stuck in the size-check device, or having to pay a fortune for the kilos of excess baggage you are carrying, double check the size, weight, and item restrictions that apply.
Bring whatever you may need to avoid boredom with you
Having a distraction for the trip will make time go by faster and make the journey more pleasant. If you are carrying a tablet or a laptop you’ll be allowed to use them during the flight (except during takeoff and landing in the case of larger devices). You’ll have to think about downloading some movies or some episodes of your favorite TV series in advance (and don’t forget your headphones). If you’d rather read, be careful, as books tend to be one of the things we are most likely to leave behind on our night table. Additionally, if you are going to sleep during the flight, don’t forget to take a travel pillow or a travel headrest with you, as there’s nothing worse than waking up with a strained muscle due to poor posture while sleeping.
Remember to eat before the flight
It’s a well-known fact that the food served on board is not always excellent, and in their defense, it’s not always the airline’s fault.
According to a recent study published in the Journal of Experimental Psychology there are a number of factors that affect our sense of taste. Two researchers from Cornell University found that our ability to perceive sweetness decreases in noisy environments. Moreover, the pressurized cabin dries out the nasal cavity, which explains why we often find in-flight food to be bland and mediocre. So take no risks, bring your own snacks with you and eat them before boarding (unless you’d rather head straight over to any airport bar, but watch out because, as we all know, their prices are not always wallet-friendly).
Take measures to avoid suffering with pressure changes
The air in the cabin tends to be very dry, so you have to remember to stay hydrated. You can buy a water bottle after passing through the safety check, or carry an empty bottle and fill it up at any airport fountain (but you can’t drink the water from the sink in the plane’s toilet, it’s not potable). As an alternative, you can always ask the crew for water at any time. In addition, consider the possibility of bringing chewing gum or tablets to prevent your ears from getting blocked. And lastly, take a small tube of face or hand lotion (under 100 ml) with you to relieve dry skin.
And our last little tip: if at any point your trip starts to seem long and annoying, just think of your destination;) !