Even before the plane goes up, stress levels of unprepared passengers can reach over 30,000 feet high. Air travel can quickly turn a comfortable—exciting, even—period that should pass by smoothly, into an unhappy journey that could potentially affect the destination.
Fortune favors the prepared, so here’s a shortlist of ways to ensure traveling by air is hassle-free.
Pack smart and strategically
When travel experts talk about packing smart, it means bringing only the essential items or those one really needs. Use travel organizers to separate clothing and miscellaneous items to avoid unnecessary rummaging through the luggage just to get that item that sits under everything else.
When packing toiletries and other important personal products, buy those in travel sizes allowed by authorities. Find out beforehand what are not allowed to put in the checked-in and/or cabin luggage. Finally, ensure the bags do not exceed weight limits to avoid paying for excess baggage fee.
Get to the airport early
It’s extremely unwise to leave getting to the airport on time to chance, especially since traffic in many major urban centers, particularly Metro Manila, can turn a 15-minute trip into at least an hour-long ride.
The rule of thumb when flying is to get to the airport at least three hours (international) or two hours (local) before the scheduled flight so one has enough time for check-in and security screening. Worried of getting bored waiting? Use this time to catch up on reading, eat a meal, or go shopping—or at least check out what’s available in the stores.
Keep your phone charged
Things may not go as planned, and when this happens, it helps to have a trusty phone ready to make phone calls, send messages, or go online to make necessary changes or search the web. Before leaving for the airport, get your phone’s battery to, ideally, 100 percent. On long flights, keep a charger or powerbank handy.
When going abroad, it may be better to buy a new SIM card in the destination for easier, better, and cheaper communication. Better still, find out if there are Wi-Fi devices available for rent—rates may be more affordable and charges may be based on the actual number of days a tourist will be staying in a particular country.
Bring something to keep kids busy
Traveling with children can be difficult, especially when they start wailing or throwing tantrums out of boredom. To spare parents and guardians (did we mention the other passengers, too?) the stress, bring something that will keep children entertained throughout the flight.
Download their favorite movies or television shows, pack their favorite toys, and bring some snacks. If it is a long flight, bring comfortable pillows and blankets. Traveling with a baby? It’s especially considerate to give disposable earplugs to nearby passengers.
Get travel insurance
Some of the worst things that can happen when traveling are accidents, medical emergencies, missed flights, and lost baggage and mix-ups. These events can be a real bummer. Ensure a stress-free vacation by getting a travel insurance such as Axa Smart Traveller.
Axa Smart Traveller comes with a wide range of benefits, including 24-hour travel assistance, protection of personal belongings, and refunds for travel inconveniences. Plans include Essential, Classic, and Elite. The Classic and Elite plans are compliant with the Schengen visa requirement, with the latter offering the highest coverage available. There’s also a plan for a single trip for up to 10 adults and 10 children traveling together to and from the same destination within the same travel period, as well as annual plan for an individual or group.
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