Traveling can and often does take a lot out of you be it for work or pleasure – and these days given the indecency of TSA checks, long security lines, added time at airports and even more cramped planes it can be enough to make you think twice about that vacation or decide to drive on your business trip instead. It does not have to be that bad though – we have compiled a list of travel hacks that will save you time, reduce your aggravation, and get you more comfortable seats.
Our travel hacks:
Travel hack #1 – this gets broken out because it is so important: TSA Pre-Check + Global Entry + Clear = TSA hassle minimization.
- If it seems weird to have these three overlapping services – hear me out first. Global entry and TSA pre-check almost speak for themselves given their ubiquity and low cost. Layering in Clear on benefits in a smaller (but growing) group of airports. So you might ask why it helps? Unfortunately the TSA has a nasty habit of granting pre-check to people who don’t have it which means you can have pre-check lines full of travelers who are not seasoned and as such are very slow, you know pretty much defeating the point of pre-check. In my home airport of Denver we routinely see TSA lines near as long as the regular check-in lines. Lines full of people who don’t actually know what TSA-Pre is. Layering Clear on over this lets you skip all those folks then duck into the “keep your shoes on” line just for screening.
Ok on to the shorter list:
1.) Get a more comfortable seat:
- Use a site like seatguru.com to book this will guarantee that you have the most comfortable seats in your selected class and warn you before you do something like book a non-reclining seat.
2.) Minimize Jetlag:
- You’ll always get the usual “lay off booze and caffeine” advice but outside of that making sure you are well rested before a flight and even shifting your sleep pattern a couple of hours towards your intended destination will massively reduce jetlag.
- Food: Not everyone thinks about how much what, how, and when you eat affects Jetlag and recovery from it but it is probably the second largest factor. Much like sleep shifting your eating patterns towards your destination will significantly reduce jetlag as will eating lighter healthier foods inflight.
3.) Airline Apps:
- This isn’t a huge hack but it is smart to have your airline app on your phone with push notifications enabled – if it saves you just once from showing up for a flight that is delayed 4 hours it is worth it.
4.) Stay juiced up:
- Keep a set of charges and cables specifically for travel in your bags so that you are never without. If something goes wrong though fear not most hotel front desks have a drawer of chargers and cables that have been left behind, borrow one from them rather than buy a $30 cable at the airport.
- Batteries not included: If you have the space look at external battery boosters and at upgrading the internal battery on your laptop. This will give you hours of backup juice but it does come at a cost, added weight.
5.) Be a cookie monster:
- When booking flights and hotels online enable private browsing. Travel sites often track your visits and will raise the price when you’ve visited before.
the last and certainly not least of our travel hacks – Read The Points Guy’s Blog for all the latest ways to maximize your rewards.