10 Summer Travel Hacks You Need

With many Americans planning to take a vacation this summer, there’s no time like the present to share some easy and useful tips to help minimize stress and maximize the fun! Here’s the CheapAir.com list not to miss!

family in airport

1. Wear Your Heaviest/Bulkiest Clothing on the Plane
In these days of airlines charging for checked bags, “luggage goals” for a lot of folks is to go carry-on only. To maximize bag space, we like to keep the shoes, sweaters, and even coats out of the carry-on. Even if you don’t plan to wear a coat, hook it over your arm and then stow in the overhead. Shhh…we won’t tell!

2. Don’t Air Your Dirty Laundry
Two of the best ways to keep your clean clothes smelling fresh is to bring a dryer sheet to stow in your dirty laundry bag OR co-opt the hotel’s bar soap for the same purpose.

3. Take a Left at Security for Shorter Lines
People tend to turn in the direction of their dominant hand. The lanes furthest to the left are usually the least used.

4. Don’t Miss Your Flight Because of Security Lines
Get the My TSA app that tells you in real time how long your wait will be and will also give you an idea (based on historical data), how busy your airport is likely to be on any given day of the year.

5. Exhaust Your Small Kids
If you’re traveling with littles, the best thing to do is let them run around the airport until you absolutely have to board. Moms and dads like to get on the plane early to get organized and comfy, but your kids are going to be squirmy little buckets of energy no matter what you do. We like to take our kids on a decent walk around the airport (there’s usually fun art and other family-friendly activities at bigger airports these days to engage them). If you want to split the difference, send one parent ahead on the plane to get settled. More about traveling with small kids.

6. Consider a Lounge Pass

airport loungeFamilies on long travel days, the elderly who would like a bit of extra comfort, nervous fliers heck anyone who likes a little bit better service and free snacks should check into whether day passes are available for their airline lounge. If you think you might be dining in the airport anyway, a VIP pass is an easy way to add a little bit of comfort to your journey.

7. Morning Flights Mean Less Turbulence
Are you a nervous flyer? Take the first flight out. As the day progresses, hot air rises, which can cause wind and storms. An earlier flight stacks the odds in your favor. If you do happen to get on a flight with some bumpiness, sit over the wings (the part of the plane that feels it the least).

8. Wipe Down That Tray Table
If you’re the kind of person who always gets sick on vacation, don’t forget to disinfect that tray table. It’s the dirtiest place on the plane and flight attendants don’t always wipe them down between flights. You’re much more likely to catch a bug from this sort of bacteria than you might with a sneezy seatmate.

9. Skip the Booze on Long Flights
Yeah, we know. This one is kind of counter-intuitive. But here’s the deal. Alcohol dehydrates. If you’re crossing an ocean and already worried about jetlag, you can pretty much guarantee a rocky start to your vacation if you choose to imbibe on the plane. Don’t arrive fuzzy and groggy to the trip you’ve been dreaming about!

10. Stay Connected

vacation on cell phoneIf you haven’t already downloaded onto your phone or computer, make sure you have viber for free phone calls and sending texts/photos and WhatsApp to IM.

For more information on the best time to buy flights, check out our Summer Flights page. Happy summer travel vibes!

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