Whether it’s your first trip or you are a seasoned jet setter,
it’s never too late to learn a couple of new tricks to make your
trip more enjoyable, more efficient, and safer.
Here are a few steps you should always follow.
o Always confirm reservations the day before especially for late
arrivals give a credit card guarantee.
Send a copy of your itinerary to significant other or closest
family member. (I also put a copy of my schedule on the
TIP: Discuss up front how often and when you will call so family
won’t be worried if they don’t hear from you. Set aside a
specific time you will touch base either by phone email or fax
(fax is particularly good when out of the country and in
different time zones.)
o Plan to travel light but always put and extra set of underwear
and essentials in your carry on. Pack dress shoes in a carry on
if you wear running shoes to the airport. I once had to make an
important presentation in my sneakers because my luggage was
lost. Include any medications that you need on a daily basis in
your carry on. Carry plenty of water on the plane and take
something for dry throat such as lozenges in your carry on. Put
important phone numbers such as your meeting location in case of
delays in a couple of places among your bags.
TIP: Always carry your important business papers with you on the
plane. DO NOT check your briefcase.
o Pack extra glasses, tissues, and aspirin in your travel bag.
Take snacks such as raisins, nuts or fruit (not candy) in case
you get stranded on a runway and there is no food.
o Double check to ensure you have cash, identification, credit
cards, itinerary and eticket or paper ticket before you leave
home. (Don’t forget your passport if you are traveling out of the
country). Go through your purse to ensure there are no scissors
or similar items that might be construed as weapons. I lost a
very nice pair of scissors that way.
o Don’t wear shoes with metal bars/rods in the soles. It is awful
to have to take them off and walk around in your bare feet.
Depending upon the size of the airport this can add considerable
time to the screening process. You can never be too careful. Once
the under wire in my bra set off the alarm at the airport and a
female attendant had to pat me up to make sure I didn’t have a
concealed weapon in my bra.
o Plan to arrive at the airport a minimum of two hours before
your flight. The important lesson is to be relaxed and enjoy the
trip. You do not want to start off on a bad foot by rushing
frantically at the last minute. Should your schedule be really
tight, find an agent at the airport and explain the situation.
Don’t stand in line expecting them to contact you. Arrive at the
gate at least 20 minutes before departure. If the flight is over
booked, they WILL give away your seat. If you and someone else
have the same seat don’t get up and give it to them. Stay seated
and alert a flight attendant. Provide your boarding pass.
Possession is 9/10 of the law. You don’t have to move if you got
there first. This is the time to stand your ground or you might
not be on the flight at all.
o If your travel is for an important meeting that you simply you
can’t miss, plan to go the night before. Don’t take a late flight
but one that allows you to get your hotel, have dinner and relax
the evening before the meeting. Check schedules of smaller
airports too. In many cases there may be a limited number of
flights if you miss connections. This could justify going in the
o If the flight is unreasonably delayed and you need to let some
one know use the in flight phone while in transit. It is pricey
but worth it if you need to inform someone of your whereabouts.
o Most major hotels have laptop connections in the room. If you
will require this, check before hand and book one of those rooms.
Also verify services charges. Many hotels that cater to business
travelers have a separate business suite with computers, printers
and fax machine. This is any area where you might have
significant charges if you aren’t careful. The same goes for the
room phone. Don’t use the room phone except in an emergency.
There are high surcharges and tariffs at most hotels. Use your
cell or the public phones in the lobby if you have a lot of calls
o If you are making a speech or presentation at the meeting,
check to see their computer capabilities. Many times it’s better
to take several CDs with your presentation rather than lugging
o When buying luggage make sure it has wheels. Its also better to
have two smaller cases rather than one heavy one. This is
especially true in Europe where accommodations for large luggage
o Check out the transportation. Your best option is to
pre-arrange a car service to pick you up. Most airports have
numerous options to choose from outside of the baggage claim
area. If you choose a taxi be sure you have the actual…