General travel tips

  • Before leaving, line up all the cards in your wallet on the bed of a scanner or photocopier, and save multiple copies of both sides. Take one with you, and leave one with a friend or at home; that way, should your wallet get lost or stolen, you will have a head start in getting everything reported and replaced.
  • Purchase your water once inside security or wait unti you are on the plane and get it for free.Be prepared when you arrive at the airport. Have your liquids out and ready. Have your photo ID and boarding pass in hand. All your metal stuff should already be off and either in a convenient outside pocket of a bag or in a handbag. Don’t wait to “undress” in the line. You should be able to just walk up, put your laptop in a bin with your cell phone, change, keys, and take your shoes off. You need YOUR boarding pass in your hand. Don’t carry someone else’s for them.Once you get through, gather your stuff and move forward away from the end of the xray so others have room — but don’t leave anything. Re-dress where there is plenty of room for people to get by.People lose things because they put something down to pick something else up. ID’s, boarding passes, and laptops. A cell phone without a name on it, clearly visible, is a goner, if left behind. If you leave it, and it has a name on it, the TSA will page you to return and claim it. Source
  • I carry an empty bottle always and have never, ever had any problems. I place it in the bin with my stuff when going through security.
    I am not going to rely on the FA’s to get me a drink. I do not like waiting, especially if we have a delay. I carry water and buy 2 diet Mountain Dew’s anytime I fly (out of DFW).I wash and cut up an apple and take chicken salad. I have taken those Uncrustables and homemade sandwiches many, many times. I leave them in my bag that goes through the x-ray and have never once had the TSA look at it.My last international trip, I took some of those crackers and cheese packets and forgot to bring them out of my case. Nada… they did not even bat an eye.
    You can take fruit on any flight, you just can’t take it off the flight at the destination.
    I am notorious for taking food to my destination, including some can items. Just stick those in your checked bags. Source
  • Buy a good piece of luggage with roller wheels – Costco and Sams have a good selection for around $100. Any thing less will break/rip too soon and is a poor value. Buy a small enough bag that can be carried on or checked at the gate if you want to travel light/quick (no checking bags) or a moderate sized bag if you plan to check bags. Weight limits are being strictly enforced especially for casual travelers. (Brother #2)
  • Bring 2 pairs of shoes, wearing your more comfortable pair (sneakers) and packing your better pair. (Brother #2)
  • You have to decide your level of “preparedness” in case they lose your checked bag — do you travel with toothbrush, underwear, change of clothes in your carry on? I do not and have been lucky, but many do. (Brother #4)
  • I’m sure you know this — have a print out of all addresses and phone numbers and reservation numbers of the hotel, a cab company for your destination city, the location of your event, emergency contact numbers. Bring some emergency cash for a taxi. Sometime I used to put a little extra cash in my suitcase in case my wallet was lifted, but I dont anymore. Don’t check your camera if you are bringing one. You;’re pretty safe to assume a hotel will have a wake up service or alarm clock or both. (Brother #4)
  • On longer trips we use special travel plastic bags, they are like zip locks with a one way valve at the bottom. You put in your folded clothes and squeeze out all the extra air. It dramatically saves space — look for them at Target or K-mart or a travel store. (Brother #4)

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