Saturday, November 12, 2016 / by Shenae Andrus
If you are like me, you grew up getting from place to place by car. There were no ships or planes for our family of five. Traveling and vacations consisted of road trips alone. It did not matter if it was a short drive to Georgia or 24 hours by automobile to Maine - we would be driving the entire way. That meant that three little girls would be crammed into the back of a mini-van left up to their own devices for entertainment during the countless minutes and hours inside of the car. I distinctly remember my little sister falling asleep on one trip, and feeling so bored that I made up a game of how to annoy her into waking up, just for fun. Needless to say there was deep, belly laughter and also some yelling and tears on those excursions. A few times my dad even threatened to pull over and give us a stern talking to.
When my husband and I got married, I was elated that most of our traveling was by plane. Long gone were my days sitting for torturous hours buckled into a small space, fighting with my sisters. I thought that my life had just gotten a whole lot easier when it came to travels. After all, flying is so much more convenient than driving... right? I had a harsh contrast to my opinion of flying last year when my hubby and I endured over a dozen flights back to back for various obligations and vacations. I suddenly realized that flights actually took just as much out of us as did driving! By time we drove two hours to the airport, found a place to park, got our boarding passes, prayed we'd make it through security, ran to our gate, tried desperately to cram our carry-ons into the overhead bins and climbed over those already seated to get buckled in, we felt as if we had run a marathon. This mad dance was encountered every time we flew, until we finally caught on! The trick to flying is the same trick to making any experience more efficient - you just have to know a few tricks to the trade.
If you have travel plans coming up soon, here are a few things to keep in mind that I've learned from our many moments in the sky:
1) Pre-check in is not always worth the time to actually process online. The only time it's worth your effort to get the boarding passes beforehand, is when you are not bringing luggage to check in. If you are only bringing a carry on, then you can bring your boarding pass straight to security. However, if you have suitcases to check, then you still have to stand in line and spend the same amount of time checking in. So save yourself a step and skip checking in beforehand.
2) Bring a pair of socks with you for TSA Security checks. I can't tall you how many times I had to walk barefoot on the dirty airport floors, because I wore sandals to the airport and had to take them off to walk through the body scanner. Each time I would kick myself for not bringing a pair of socks to slip on to spare me from the disgusting germ ridden mats that I observed others walking barefoot on, only minutes before.
3) Start preparing for your security scan while you are standing in line. Things go a lot smoother when you go ahead and remove your watch, belt and shoes before you are at the conveyer belt. Once you get there, there is a lot of pressure to move fast and not hold up the line. So do yourself a favor and have everything prepared to throw in the trays as soon as it's your turn.
4) Talk to the ticket counter at your gate and ask for better seats. You might think that all of the seats are taken, but you'd be surprised at what the agents at the ticket counter can do from behind their computers. Maybe it's just my husband's charm, but more times than not, when he asks if there are any closer seats, we get what we ask for!
5) While preparing for the flight you can throw a few things into your purse or carry on that will make your flight more comfortable and cost effective. Purchasing snacks and entertainment in the airport or on the flight can prove to be pretty pricey. Save yourself some money and bring wrapped snacks like granola bars with you. They'll pass through security and you won't have to make any pit stops on your way to your gate. Enjoy snacks as you fly - especially on those flights that do not even offer anything to eat besides pretzels!
What little tips would you offer a frequent flyer? Is there anything that you have found works best for you? Send us your tips to be featured on our next blog, at Shenae@donwilliamsgroup.com. We love hearing from our clients and would love to chat with anyone that is interested in Delaware real estate. Whether you are looking to buy or sell a home, we can help you every step of the way. Give us a call today at (302)545-6859 and speak with our Group Leader, Don Williams.