One thing I find irrationally annoying in life is waiting for checked baggage at the airport. If I’m returning, I just want to get home. If I’m arriving, I just want to get going. Milling around a clanking, crowded baggage carousel is the least appealing thing I can imagine after a day of travel.
By now I’ve flown enough to know that, for me, a few things can make the whole process less obnoxious. I actually like airports, and I could stare out that little oval window to the earth below for hours on end, but the in-between parts of airline travel get old fast. So, some tricks I like:
Thus avoiding the aforementioned, pesky waiting for bags problem. I can pretty comfortably fit a week’s worth of packing into an average sized backpack, plus a larger purse or messenger bag. Clothes can always be mix-matched and even washed while I’m away. So worth it, both mentally and economically, if it means no checked bag.
CHECK IN ONLINE
No checked bag then means no reason to see the gate agent on the day of travel. I can check in online the night before (usually the airline will send an email notification prompting you to do just that), print my boarding passes, and head straight to security upon entering the airport. In other words, one less line to stand in.
BRING YOUR WATER BOTTLE
Maybe you can’t bring liquids through security, but you can certainly fill up an empty water bottle on the other side! Plenty of airports now have filling stations for just this purpose – a lot more environmentally-friendly and a lot less expensive than buying countless water bottles to get me through the travel day.
PACK SOME SNACKS
Thanks to travel delays, I have often found myself rushing from one flight to the next when I planned on having plenty of layover time to buy some food. I like bringing a big bag of almonds and a few granola bars, that way I have variety and something to snack on while I’m away, too.
WEAR A SCARF
Wearing a good scarf means a) looking cute, while b) carrying a portable pillow/blanket wherever you go. Just find one that’s wide enough to wrap around your shoulders and you can keep warm or ball it up and rest your head. Maybe wear two scarves and then you can do both at once . . .
What do your travel rituals look like?