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  • Writer's pictureAltie Nicholas

TIPS FOR A SMOOTHER FALL/WINTER VACATION


Travel is back!!

For many of us, this is our first time traveling in months and we have high expectations for our long awaited vacations. Unfortunately, airlines are having challenges in staffing to meet the demand. Here are some tips we’ve compiled for you to help deal with any interruptions in your trip.



TIP 1

GET TO THE AIRPORT WITH PLENTY OF TIME TO SPARE

For international flights, that means arriving three to four hours before departure. For domestic flights, you should plan on two hours in advance. Lines have the potential to be very long at the ticket counters, baggage check and security, so if you cut it too close you run the risk of missing your flight. Airlines have a cutoff time to accept your checked bags, usually 90-120minutes prior to your flight, so arriving late could mean you can only take your carry-on with you. Also, remember to take advantage of any frequent-flier status you have on the airline to check in using the preferred or first-class line.


TIP 2

PREPARE FOR FLIGHT DELAYS

If you must change planes to get to your destination, schedule a longer connection time than you would normally. Even if you think you have plenty of time, a crowded airport means it’ll take you longer to make your way to another gate or terminal. Consider booking a nonstop flight, even if it’s more expensive. Additionally, try to book the first flight of the day as they are much less likely to experience delays. Likewise, don’t book the last flight of the day as that limits your options.




TIP 3
USE CARRY-ON BAGS INSTEAD OF CHECKED BAGS WHENEVER POSSIBLE

This way, if there’s a delay or cancellation, you won’t have to wait for your luggage to be pulled or be without your bags if you miss your connection. Most people over-pack so only bring what is necessary. Ask yourself if you really need those 6 pairs of shoes?!?!


TIP 4

BE PREPARED FOR DELAYED CHECKED BAGS

If you do check your bags, make sure you are taking your electronic devices and chargers, a change of clothes and any needed medications in your carry-on. In the event of a long delay, you’ll be glad you have them with you.


Many travelers have found that placing a digital tracker, such as Apple Air Tags, in their luggage gives them peace of mind in knowing where their bags are at all times.

TIP 5

TAKE ADVANTAGE OF CLUB MEMBERSHIPS

If you’re a member of an airline club lounge, utilize the staff at the service desk to make any changes caused by flight delays or disruptions. They will frequently go the extra mile for members. Also, take advantage of club-use privileges that come with credit cards you may have, such as American Express Platinum or Capital One Venture X.


TIP 6

DOWNLOAD AIRLINE APPS

The airline apps are great sources of up-to-date information on flight status, tracking of your bags and proactive re-booking for missed connections. Often you can make same-day flight changes for free right in the app, so you don’t have to wait in long lines at the gate or ticket counter. Always enter your phone number in your reservation to receive updates about delays and gate changes. If a cancellation text comes through, immediately go into your app to look at the next available flights to move to. You will beat the rush of people going to the counter for help.


TIP 7

BE FLEXIBLE AND “CHILL”

There may be times when you’ll feel frustrated or angry, but taking it out on the people who work at the airport won’t get you anywhere. You are much more likely to get help from a sympathetic airline staff member by showing empathy than by being aggressive. Pack your patience!



TIP 8

ADD DAYS TO THE TRIP PLAN

Think about tacking a few days onto either side of your trip. If you’re just going away for a weekend, a flight delay could mean you lose valuable time at your destination. The same goes if you’re taking a tour or a cruise. You should plan on arriving at the starting point a few days early. You don’t want to miss out on your vacation because of a flight delay.


TIP 9

CONTACT OUR TRAVEL AGENCY

As travel advisors, we are here to assist our clients. Your safety, health and well-being are our top priority. We provide available information, so our valued clients can make informed decisions about their travel plans. If you are still in the process for making plans to travel this fall or winter, please don’t hesitate to contact us for planning help. We offer expert advice on where to go, where to stay and which flights to take. And if there’s a delay or cancellation, rest assured you will have a human you can easily contact able to help resolve the issue.


 

Wishes & Wanderlust Travel is an online travel agency located in Jonesboro, Arkansas assisting travelers from coast to coast. We specialize in custom designed all inclusive, cruise, and Disney vacations for couples, families, and groups of any size. Please visit our website to get inspired and when you're ready to plan your next trip, request a new trip HERE.

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