air travel http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/9305/all en-US 7 Fool-Proof Ways to Stay Within Your Travel Budget http://www.wisebread.com/7-fool-proof-ways-to-stay-within-your-travel-budget <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-fool-proof-ways-to-stay-within-your-travel-budget" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_travel_map_000054071742.jpg" alt="Woman finding ways to stay within travel budget" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Once you've planned your big trip, written down all of your expenses, and come up with a travel plan, you may think that it will be easy to stay within your budget. But sometimes you end up going over your planned costs, no matter how prepared you think you are. Here are seven tips to help ensure that you stay under budget and on top of your travel spending.</p> <h2>1. Put Your Daily Budget in Your Wallet</h2> <p>This is a very easy way to make sure that you spend exactly what you were hoping to spend on your trip. Simply calculate a daily budget and only put that amount of money in your wallet each day. When the wallet is empty, your budget for the day is spent.</p> <p>Of course, some would argue that using cash instead of credit has all sorts of disadvantages. So if you want to use your credit card (the one with <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/smarter-security-and-no-foreign-transaction-fees-the-best-credit-cards-to-use-while-on-vacation">no foreign transaction fees</a> and that <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/top-5-travel-reward-credit-cards">offers travel rewards</a> so you can go on your next vacation sooner), you can always jot down what you've spent through the day, so you know how much is left in your daily budget.</p> <h2>2. Keep Track of Everything</h2> <p>The best way to stay on top of your spending is to write it all down, but who has a pen, paper, and calculator these days? Luckily, there's an app for that.</p> <p>The Trail Wallet app (only <a href="http://voyagetravelapps.com/trail-wallet/">available for Apple devices</a>) allows you to set a daily budget, add different currencies, and input each purchase you make throughout the day. It saves you the hassle of converting foreign money to your home currency and even puts everything into handy, easy-to-read pie charts so that you can see exactly where your money is spent.</p> <p>See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/travel-resources?ref=seealso">40 Most Useful Travel Websites That Can Save You a Fortune</a></p> <h2>3. Cook and Drink In</h2> <p>This can be a huge money saver while on the road, especially when traveling to expensive destinations like Rome and Paris. Of course, I'm not saying you should forgo local food and cook for yourself every day to save a buck, but if you can eat at least one meal in each day, you can save a significant amount of money.</p> <p>See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-14-best-ways-to-cut-food-costs-while-traveling?ref=seealso">14 Ways to Cut Food Costs While Traveling</a></p> <p>You don't have to rent your own apartment to have your own cooking facilities, either. Many hostels and some guest houses and B&amp;Bs have communal kitchens where you can store your groceries in the fridge and have full use of the stove and dishes.</p> <h2>4. Riding Isn't Always Cheaper Than Flying</h2> <p>People often assume that flying is always the more expensive option, but that's not always the case. Sometimes, especially in places with strong competition for budget airlines like in Europe and Asia, it's much cheaper to fly.</p> <p>For example, a train from Rome to Paris will cost you at least $136 and take you around 11 hours, while a cheap non-stop flight with Ryanair will only take two hours and won't likely cost you more than $40.</p> <h2>5. Travel a Little Slower</h2> <p>One sure way to blow your budget is to move around too much. When people plan their finances for a holiday, they rarely take into consideration how much buses, taxis, rental cars, and flights will cost.</p> <p>To cut down on these expenses, consider <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/savor-your-trip-and-save-big-with-these-5-slow-travel-tips">traveling slower</a>. Stay in a place longer and get to know it better. Rent an apartment for a week and get a discount for a longer stay. Get to know the cheapest restaurants where the locals always eat and try to cook for yourself.</p> <p>See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/live-like-a-local-how-to-tap-into-the-local-scene-while-traveling?ref=seealso">Live Like a Local: How to Tap Into the Local Scene While Traveling</a></p> <h2>6. Shop Around</h2> <p>Don't just take the first price you're given. This goes for everything while traveling. Take the time to walk around and find cheaper restaurants. Check different bus routes and companies to find better value transport. Check different tour companies for the best deals.</p> <p>If you're planning to rent a car, shop around to different rental companies. Find the best deal you can, and then go to other companies and see if they can beat the price. You'd be surprised how low these business are willing to drop their prices.</p> <p>I recently used this tactic in Croatia. At first, the car was going to cost me $25 per day for 12 days, but after shopping around and bargaining with different companies, I got it down to $15. I saved a total of $120 over 12 days just by shopping around.</p> <p>See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-youre-paying-too-much-for-when-you-travel-and-how-to-pay-less?ref=seealso">10 Things You're Paying Too Much for When You Travel and How to Pay Less</a></p> <h2>7. Rent a Motorcycle Instead of Doing Tours</h2> <p>This can be a big money saver, especially in Asian countries where it costs less than $5 per day for a motorcycle rental. Instead of taking expensive tours, consider heading into a tourist office or tourism information center and ask them where the best nearby sites are.</p> <p>They'll often give you a map and circle the highlights of the region. These are likely the same stops that a day tour would take you to, so now all you have to do is rent a motorbike or scooter for the day and visit the sites yourself.</p> <p>In Asia, you can rent a motorbike for $5 and you'll probably only use $5 worth of gas in a full day of touring. Tours usually cost $40 or more, so the motorbike is a good way to save money and stay in budget. You can even split the motorbike and gas cost with a friend or travel partner.</p> <h2>Don't Be Too Strict</h2> <p>Even budget travelers have to splurge sometimes. These tips will help you stay within your financial plan, but make sure you leave some room for extra activities and must-see side trips. Don't try to scrape by on as little as possible because you may end up missing out on some amazing experiences. Budget smart and travel safe!</p> <p><em>How do you stay on budget when you're on the road?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/nick-wharton">Nick Wharton</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-fool-proof-ways-to-stay-within-your-travel-budget">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-fun-ways-the-sharing-economy-helps-you-save-on-vacation">5 Fun Ways the Sharing Economy Helps You Save on Vacation</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/are-all-inclusive-vacations-and-cruises-worth-the-money">Are All-Inclusive Vacations and Cruises Worth the Money?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-smart-travel-hacks-only-frequent-flyers-know">5 Smart Travel Hacks Only Frequent Flyers Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-ways-to-save-and-make-money-while-traveling">12 Ways to Save and Make Money While Traveling</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-6-best-vacation-deal-websites">The 6 Best Vacation Deal Websites</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Travel air travel car rentals saving money tourism travel budget vacation Tue, 17 May 2016 10:00:13 +0000 Nick Wharton 1706848 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Smart Travel Hacks Only Frequent Flyers Know http://www.wisebread.com/5-smart-travel-hacks-only-frequent-flyers-know <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-smart-travel-hacks-only-frequent-flyers-know" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_airport_travel_000072076767.jpg" alt="Woman learning travel hacks that frequent flyers keep secret" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Airports can be a drag. Long lines, grumpy staff, crowded waiting areas, and poorly automated climate control can really put a damper on your travel day. But layovers, delays, and airport lobbies don't have to be uncomfortable. Using these expert tips, you can hack your way into a more enjoyable flying experience.</p> <h2>1. Skip the Lines</h2> <p>&quot;Oops! Am I in the wrong line?&quot; Most of the time, these simple words will allow you to get checked in at the priority desk without any issue. If you are at the airport and you see a painfully long check-in line and an empty priority line, consider &quot;accidentally&quot; walking up to the latter. You might be surprised at how often your mistake can save you time.</p> <p>You may also want to apply for <a href="https://www.tsa.gov/tsa-precheck">TSA Pre-Check</a> or get a <a href="http://www.globalentry.gov/">Global Entry</a> card which allows travelers to go through security faster and get expedited clearance through customs. There are fees associated with applying, but there are some credit cards that reimburse the cost. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-credit-cards-that-offer-tsa-pre-check-and-global-entry-reimbursement?ref=seealso">Best Credit Cards that Offer TSA Pre-Check and Global Entry Reimbursement</a>)</p> <h2>2. Get Upgraded</h2> <p>The check-in agents at the airport have more power than you know. If there is space in the first class cabin, they can <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-cheapest-ways-to-fly-first-class">upgrade you free of charge</a>. Be extremely nice to the staff at the check-in counter and ask if there's food on the plane. Maybe you can't go a long time without food? Tell them this and vaguely hint that you'd like to get upgraded.</p> <p>You could also try the &quot;I've never flown first class and I've always wondered what it's like&quot; line in a last-ditch effort to join the more comfortable business passengers.</p> <p>See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-frequent-flyer-programs-with-free-first-class-seat-upgrades?ref=seealso">Best Frequent Flyer Programs With Free First Class Seat Upgrades</a></p> <h2>3. Piggyback to the First Class Lounge</h2> <p>Every passenger in the first class lounge is allowed to have a guest. You could be that guest! Just hang out outside of the first class lounge and make a new friend just before they go through the doors. Ask them if you can be their guest and you can enjoy a wide variety of drinks and food... for free. If only you could piggyback your way into the first class cabin on the plane!</p> <p>See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-credit-cards-with-free-airport-lounge-access?ref=seealso">How to Get Free Airport Lounge Access</a></p> <h2>4. Use the My TSA App</h2> <p>Wait times can vary greatly depending on which airport you're flying out of and what time of day you're scheduled to depart. Check out the My TSA app on <a href="https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/my-tsa/id380200364?mt=8">Apple</a> and <a href="https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=gov.dhs.tsa.mytsa&amp;hl=en">Android</a> to search current wait times at many airports around the world. There's no point in showing up at the airport three hours early if the security check lines will only take you 10 minutes. Conversely, you better be there extra early if the lines are going to take forever. This app can save you a lot of time and worry.</p> <h2>5. Fly Private</h2> <p>I know what you're thinking. Private flights are only for celebrities and rewards point hoarders, but these days that just isn't true. There's a new app called <a href="https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/jetsmarter-fly-on-private/id562937375?mt=8">JetSmarter</a> and it's being called the Uber of air travel. Some of the flights found on the app will still be way too expensive for the average traveler, but some are much cheaper than you might expect &mdash; like a flight from Houston to Arlington on a private jet with only seven other people for $365 per person. Talk about living large on a small budget!</p> <h2>Fly Smarter</h2> <p>Recent polls have shown that people tend to <a href="http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/travel/flights/2007-12-20-tsa-survey_N.htm">hate the TSA</a> as much as the IRS, while other polls show that passengers would be <a href="http://thehill.com/policy/transportation/236884-poll-passengers-willing-to-pay-higher-airport-fees">willing to pay more</a> for their ticket just to have a more enjoyable airport experience. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-credit-cards-that-offer-the-best-travel-perks?ref=seealso">Get Exclusive Travel Perks with These Credit Cards</a>)</p> <p>This is all to say that most people are not satisfied with the challenges associated with air travel. But now you're not most people! You can utilize these tips to make your flying experience as enjoyable as possible.</p> <p>You'll never fully avoid the hassle and annoyance of the TSA, security checks, and airport line-ups, but at least you can minimize their negative effects now. Enjoy!</p> <p><em>Anything we've missed? Share you favorite airport travel tips in comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/nick-wharton">Nick Wharton</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-smart-travel-hacks-only-frequent-flyers-know">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-10"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-airline-perks-from-yesteryear-that-seem-unbelievable-today">10 Airline Perks From Yesteryear That Seem Unbelievable Today</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-fool-proof-ways-to-stay-within-your-travel-budget">7 Fool-Proof Ways to Stay Within Your Travel Budget</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-airport-hacks-from-professional-travelers">15 Airport Hacks From Professional Travelers</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-flight-booking-hacks-to-save-you-hundreds">10 Flight Booking Hacks to Save You Hundreds</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-8-worst-and-best-airport-buys">The 8 Worst and Best Airport Buys</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Travel air travel airports first class flying frequent flyers lines pre-check tsa upgrades vacation Mon, 02 May 2016 10:30:04 +0000 Nick Wharton 1693268 at http://www.wisebread.com 7 Reasons You Should Check Your Luggage http://www.wisebread.com/7-reasons-you-should-check-your-luggage <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-reasons-you-should-check-your-luggage" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/couple_travel_000027580182.jpg" alt="Couple with suitcase walking through airport" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Several years ago, many airlines started charging fees for everything &mdash; including fees for checked luggage &mdash; and many travelers started doing whatever they had to do not to check a bag. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-carry-on-luggage-can-save-you-time-and-money?ref=seealso">5 Ways Carry-On Luggage Saves You Time and Money</a>)</p> <p>I get that. I really do. However, I don't think that saving the money for the bag fee is always worth it. In fact, unless I have some compelling reason not to, I usually check my bags. Here's why.</p> <h2>1. Getting Around is a Breeze</h2> <p>Have you ever worn leg shackles? If you've toted a bunch of luggage around an airport, you know what it's like.</p> <p>Seriously, trekking a carry-on around an airport can be hellish. It sounds okay, but then you find yourself making a third trip to the bathroom, complete with suitcase and personal items, and all of a sudden it's like managing a hundred pound weight. For vastly easier movement around the airport, check that ball and chain.</p> <h2>2. Free up Your Layover</h2> <p>Layovers can be fun or stressful, depending on how much time you have. In my opinion, they're always easier without a carry-on suitcase.</p> <p>If you have to run to your next flight, you can do it without the burden of the bag. And if you have some time to enjoy yourself, you can get some food or have a drink without keeping constant vigilance over your few possessions.</p> <p>Yes, there's always a chance your bag might not make it onto your connecting flight. But in my experience, the chances of that happening are pretty small, and, when it has, I usually wound up with an email letting me know before I even had to ask. Then they delivered it to my destination, and it wasn't a big deal.</p> <h2>3. Stop Messing With Those Tiny Bottles</h2> <p>If you don't mind transferring miniscule amounts of shampoo, conditioner, body wash, and any other useful fluids to carry-on compatible bottles, then by all means don't check your bag. But if you're like me and that process is tedious and painful, avoid it by just checking the thing already.</p> <p>Not only is transferring the liquids always a mess (and mine don't come prepackaged in tiny bottles), but there's often not enough in that bottle for the entire trip. So I make a mess and then I have to go shopping anyway. I'd rather take the whole bottle and check the bag.</p> <h2>4. Bring as Much as You Want &mdash; There and Back</h2> <p>Minimalistic packing is cool, if that's the way you roll. But if you like to have options, you're traveling to several different climates, or you have a lot of items you might need, it's a royal pain.</p> <p>When you check a bag, you can bring a lot more stuff. I don't advocate traveling with stuff just to travel with stuff, but I do think your trip will be a lot more enjoyable if you are able to bring all of the things that you want to bring. If that's more than fits into a carry-on, use a bigger bag and check it.</p> <h2>5. Avoid Injury</h2> <p>I have tweaked both my neck and my shoulder lugging too much stuff around an airport. Not only was that painful, but then I had to continue carrying my bags until I got to my destination. Even though I was hurt, there wasn't another good option because I'd already decided not to check the bags.</p> <p>Even if you don't do yourself serious injury, schlepping stuff like that fatigues your muscles. If you want to be more rested when you get to your destination, check your bags.</p> <h2>6. Offer Courtesy to Fellow Passengers</h2> <p>People with a lot of luggage always seem more stressed. It makes sense: They have more to keep track of, and it's harder for them to move around and do the things they need to do. Often, their stress means that they end up being unkind to other passengers.</p> <p>Most of the arguments or rudeness I've overheard at airports have had to do with carry-on luggage. Someone rolls a bag over someone else's toes. There's no more room in the overhead bin. One person opens a bin and someone else's bag falls out. It happens. And you can avoid it all by checking your bags.</p> <h2>7. No Overhead Bin Awkwardness</h2> <p>Speaking of overhead bins&hellip;they seem specifically designed to produce awkward situations. There's no room. Someone takes a spot in a bin that doesn't correspond to their row and someone else gets angry. Things fall out. You have to crawl over people to get your stuff down. Half the people on the plane can't lift their own stuff in or out.&nbsp;If you've ever been in one of these situations, you know it can get uncomfortable.&nbsp;Now, I love awkward situations in books and movies, but I hate to be in them myself. And I avoid a setup that seems likely to produce them when I check my bags.</p> <p>Whether these benefits outweigh the cost of checking your bag is up to you. For me, they almost always do.</p> <p><em>Do you check your bags? Why or why not?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/sarah-winfrey">Sarah Winfrey</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-reasons-you-should-check-your-luggage">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-carry-on-luggage-can-save-you-time-and-money">5 Ways Carry-On Luggage Can Save You Time and Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-smart-travel-hacks-only-frequent-flyers-know">5 Smart Travel Hacks Only Frequent Flyers Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/make-flying-easy-the-ultimate-carry-on-packing-list">Make Flying Easy: The Ultimate Carry-On Packing List</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-8-worst-and-best-airport-buys">The 8 Worst and Best Airport Buys</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/wise-bread-reloaded-the-surprisingly-easy-way-to-defend-your-knees-and-other-air-travel-tips">Wise Bread Reloaded: The Surprisingly Easy Way to Defend Your Knees and Other Air Travel Tips</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Travel air travel carry-on check flying luggage Thu, 12 Mar 2015 09:00:08 +0000 Sarah Winfrey 1333248 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Cheap Ways to Make Flying Coach Feel Like First Class http://www.wisebread.com/5-cheap-ways-to-make-flying-coach-feel-like-first-class <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-cheap-ways-to-make-flying-coach-feel-like-first-class" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_000040393206_Large.jpg" alt="woman suitcase airport" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Hard seatbacks, no legroom, subpar snacks &mdash; flying coach can be less-than-cozy. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-hidden-comforts-to-consider-when-choosing-an-airline?ref=seealso">5 Hidden Comforts to Consider When Choosing an Airline</a>)</p> <p>Unfortunately, the average first-class ticket can be exorbitantly expensive in comparison. For many of us, it's just not worth it. But with a few simple tricks, you can make your back-of-the-plane flying experience feel more like that of those folks sitting up in the first few rows.</p> <h2>1. Choose Your Airline Wisely</h2> <p>Not all coach flights were created equal. JetBlue, for example, offers economy passengers an average of <a href="http://www.travelweekly.com/Travel-News/Airline-News/JetBlue-adds-bag-fee-and-shrinks-legroom-but-strikes-a-balance/">33 inches of legroom</a>, compared to the standard 31 inches. Plus, you can watch DirecTV for free. Southwest doesn't charge its economy flyers for blankets, pillows, and snacks. Virgin Atlantic has free in-flight comfort kits containing slippers, earplugs, and eye-masks. And on most Virgin flights, a&nbsp;<a href="http://www.virgin-atlantic.com/us/en/the-virgin-experience/economy/best-ever-meal.html">free welcome cocktail</a> is served before the three-course meal.</p> <h2>2. Select Your Seats With Care</h2> <p>Websites like <a href="http://www.seatguru.com/">SeatGuru</a> and <a href="http://seatexpert.com/">SeatExpert</a> were made to help you identify the roomiest, most comfortable seats on your flight. But don't be fooled &mdash; there's a lot more to consider than legroom. Distance to the nearest restroom or inflight entertainment screen are other factors that can impact the enjoyability of your flight.</p> <p>Simply look up the seating details for your specific flight and select one of the seats designated as most comfortable. Not all hope is lost if all the good seats are already taken, by the way. You can create an alert that will notify you if any of your prefered seats become available by using apps like <a href="http://www.expertflyer.com/free-program">ExpertFlyer</a>, which costs $4.99 monthly, although it won't actually execute a seat-swap on your behalf.</p> <p>Another option is TripIt Pro's <a href="https://www.tripit.com/seattracker">Seat Tracker</a>, which not only notifies you of preferred seat openings, but also allows you to confirm a seat change with the airline without ever leaving the app ($49 per year).</p> <h2>3. Invest in a Self-Inflating Seat Cushion</h2> <p>You can pretty easily go from feeling like you're sitting on a block of concrete to feeling like you're floating on a cloud by investing in a simple self-inflating seat cushion like the <a href="http://www.magellans.com/itemdy00.aspx?T1=MIF781">Luxe Self-Inflating Seat Cushion</a> ($41) by online travel gear consortium Magellan's. Sitting on this orthopedically designed cushion relieves pressure from your spinal cord, making for not only a more comfortable flight, but a more comfortable few next days.</p> <h2>4. Pack Your Own Personalized Comfort Kit</h2> <p>Melatonin to help you relax and fall asleep. Face wipes to keep you feeling fresh and clean. An iPod pre-loaded with a playlist of all your favorite travel songs. If your airline doesn't offer the little accoutrements that make all the difference between a comfortable flight and a dreadful one, pack them yourself. Other easy-to-pack items that make for a cozier in-flight experience include chocolates, fuzzy socks, eye drops, face lotion, and lots of bottled water.</p> <h2>5. Look the Part</h2> <p>If you want to enjoy a comfortable flight, dress for it. Leave the belts, heels, heavy jewelry, and neckties at home (or in your luggage) and opt instead for clothing that's soft, loose-fitting, and layered. Breathable fabrics will help you body adjust to warm or cool air cabin temperatures. Scarves, shawls, vests, sweatshirts, sweaters, and light jackets will keep you warm, plus they can double as blankets and pillows. And flat shoes you know won't make you limp or blister will be your saving grace as you stand patiently waiting to board.</p> <p><em>How do you make flying coach more comfortable?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/brittany-lyte">Brittany Lyte</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-cheap-ways-to-make-flying-coach-feel-like-first-class">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-smart-travel-hacks-only-frequent-flyers-know">5 Smart Travel Hacks Only Frequent Flyers Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-8-worst-and-best-airport-buys">The 8 Worst and Best Airport Buys</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/wise-bread-reloaded-the-surprisingly-easy-way-to-defend-your-knees-and-other-air-travel-tips">Wise Bread Reloaded: The Surprisingly Easy Way to Defend Your Knees and Other Air Travel Tips</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/23-airport-hacks-to-remember-before-your-next-flight">23 Airport Hacks to Remember Before Your Next Flight</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-hidden-comforts-to-consider-when-choosing-an-airline">5 Hidden Comforts to Consider When Choosing an Airline</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Travel air travel flying what to pack Wed, 18 Feb 2015 10:00:10 +0000 Brittany Lyte 1289845 at http://www.wisebread.com 24 Helpful Travel Hacks to Make Flying Stress-Free http://www.wisebread.com/24-helpful-travel-hacks-to-make-flying-stress-free <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/24-helpful-travel-hacks-to-make-flying-stress-free" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/businessman-airplane-cabin-Dollarphotoclub_69162482.jpg" alt="businessman airplane cabin" title="businessman airplane cabin" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Traveling on a plane around the holidays can be pretty stressful, especially if you're not a particular fan of flying as it is. If the bumps on your flight make you anxious &mdash; or worse, sick to your stomach &mdash; then follow a few simple tips that real flyers gave us on how to have a stress-free plane ride and travel experience in general. Try these tips and some <a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Airport-Hacks-35723248" helpful="" airport="" a="">, and you may even end up looking forward to your flight!</a>&nbsp;</p> <p><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Airport-Hacks-35723248" helpful="" airport="" a="">RELATED: </a><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/How-Save-Money-Travel-36092909">Need Quick Cash For a Trip? 11 Easy Ways to Save</a></p> <h2>For Anxiety:</h2> <h3>1. Be Prepared</h3> <p>Pack completely the night before so that you can get a good night's sleep without worrying about last-minute details. Get to the airport earlier so you aren't stressed out about time.</p> <h3>2. Know Your Facts</h3> <p>Read plane crash statistics and facts, because, statistically speaking, crashes are extremely rare. Remind yourself that it's safer to fly than to drive, and research <a href="http://qz.com/216999/the-complete-guide-to-getting-over-your-fear-of-air-turbulence/">why you shouldn't be afraid of turbulence</a>.</p> <h3>3. Get Comfortable</h3> <p>Once you board the plane, do your best to get comfortable immediately. Adjust the air conditioning, have a snack or some water, read a book or magazine, take deep breaths, and try to relax.</p> <h3>4. Sleep</h3> <p>Consider taking Dramamine or an antianxiety medicine that may help you sleep. If you're sleeping, you can't be nervous!</p> <h3>5. Fly During the Day</h3> <p>Sometimes flying during the day (when possible) is less stressful because it can lessen the feeling of being closed in, which tends to be worse in the blackness of night.</p> <h3>6. Make Friends</h3> <p>If you are a really nervous flyer, then try striking up a conversation with a stranger and let them know that you are nervous. This can be a good conversation starter and a useful distraction &mdash; especially during takeoff. Even if the plane hits turbulence during the flight, that person can help reassure you.</p> <h3>7. Use Your Imagination</h3> <p>Imagine the plane landing safely on the ground every time you're nervous.</p> <h3>8. Enjoy a Beverage</h3> <p>A preflight cocktail (and if necessary, a midflight cocktail) can be helpful.</p> <h3>9. Expect Issues</h3> <p>Especially when traveling over the holidays, always expect delays. That way, you aren't stressed out, upset, or surprised when they inevitably happen. In fact, when and if your flight takes off on time, it will feel like a pretty big victory.</p> <h3>10. Make a Playlist</h3> <p><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Calming-Travel-Playlist-36216000">Listen to calming music</a> that will help you relax and sleep.</p> <h3>11. Distract Yourself</h3> <p>If takeoffs are what cause you the most anxiety, find a good podcast &mdash; something with a calming voice or something funny &mdash; and turn it up loud enough to drown out surrounding noise (but not loud enough to drive your neighbor nuts!), or play a game on your device that requires all of your attention (preferably with a timer) so that you can't look away and don't even notice the takeoff.</p> <h3>12. Block It All Out</h3> <p>Use noise-canceling headphones to block out noises and distract yourself with books, music, magazines, podcasts, movies, or TV shows.</p> <h3>13. Use Calming Techniques</h3> <p>Wear something around your wrist that you can jangle, pull, or snap, which can distract you just enough to get through the takeoff or turbulence.</p> <h3>14. Rationalize</h3> <p>Think about the fact that all the flight attendants in the plane fly nearly every day, and they are all perfectly fine.</p> <h2>For Motion Sickness:</h2> <h3>15. Ginger Is Key</h3> <p>If you are prone to motion sickness, drink ginger ale or eat ginger chews to soothe your stomach.</p> <h3>16. Eat Mints or Chew Gum</h3> <p>Sometimes the coolness and freshness of mints, mint gum, mint tea, or Tic Tacs can help relieve some nausea. Chewing gum can also help, but avoid sugarfree gum, which can upset your stomach. Cinnamon gum, like Big Red, is a good option.</p> <h3>17. Buy a Motion Sickness Band</h3> <p>A <a href="http://www.rei.com/product/783422/psi-bands-wristbands">motion sickness band</a> uses acupressure to stimulate your body's ability to fight off nausea.</p> <h3>18. Don't Read</h3> <p>Avoid any kind of reading, including any phone applications, when taking off and landing and during periods of turbulence.</p> <h3>19. Drink Water</h3> <p>Make sure to stay hydrated and avoid alcoholic beverages or coffee.</p> <h3>20. Take Dramamine</h3> <p>Try taking Dramamine about an hour before you will be on the plane.</p> <h3>21. Find a Fixed Point</h3> <p>If the takeoff, landing, or plane ride is bumpy, keep your eyes on the horizon so that you're focused on a fixed point.</p> <h3>22. Plan Ahead</h3> <p>For the 12 hours before you'll be traveling, stick to simple, easy-to-digest foods, avoiding lettuce, nuts, and any kind of dairy.</p> <h3>23. Breathe!</h3> <p>Try taking deep breaths, which will help to relax the muscles that tend to contract when you're feeling sick.</p> <h3>24. Bring a Fan</h3> <p>Pack a portable fan! Keeping yourself cool can do wonders for motion sickness.</p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-blog-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> From drop-off at the curb to touchdown at your destination, flying is filled with stress inducers. Take the edge off with some simple relaxers. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-guestpost-blurb"> <div class="field-label">Guest Post Blurb:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p style="text-align:center;"><a style="border:none;" href="http://www.savvysugar.com"><img style="height:95px; width:300px" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u921/POPSUGARrgb.jpg" alt="" /></a></p> <p><em>This is a guest contribution from our friends at </em><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/"><em>POPSUGAR Smart Living</em></a><em>. Check out more useful articles from this partner:</em></p> <ul> <li><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Best-2015-Travel-Destinations-US-36256485#photo-36256485">The 10 Places in the US You Absolutely Have to Visit in 2015</a></li> <li><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Travel-Instagram-Accounts-36774978#photo-36774978">Feed Your Wanderlust With These 10 Stunning Instagram Accounts</a></li> <li><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Best-Things-Buy-Target-35385152">10 Things You Should Buy at Target</a></li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/popsugar-smart-living">POPSUGAR Smart Living</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/24-helpful-travel-hacks-to-make-flying-stress-free">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/23-airport-hacks-to-remember-before-your-next-flight">23 Airport Hacks to Remember Before Your Next Flight</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-smart-travel-hacks-only-frequent-flyers-know">5 Smart Travel Hacks Only Frequent Flyers Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-8-worst-and-best-airport-buys">The 8 Worst and Best Airport Buys</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-hidden-comforts-to-consider-when-choosing-an-airline">5 Hidden Comforts to Consider When Choosing an Airline</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-things-to-keep-you-sane-on-a-plane">6 Things to Keep You Sane on a Plane</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> General Tips Travel air travel fear flying stress Fri, 13 Feb 2015 10:00:10 +0000 POPSUGAR Smart Living 1286137 at http://www.wisebread.com The 8 Worst and Best Airport Buys http://www.wisebread.com/the-8-worst-and-best-airport-buys <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-8-worst-and-best-airport-buys" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_000015958604_Full.jpg" alt="woman airport" title="woman airport" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Your defenses are down when you enter the airport. You've got money to burn, time to waste, and you're in a state of euphoria because you'll be on a tropical beach in less than five hours. But, beware, ye of many impulses: Airport buys can make you broke if you're not careful. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-secrets-from-the-worlds-most-frugal-frequent-travelers?ref=seealso">25 Secrets From the World's Most Frugal Frequent Travelers</a>)</p> <p>So here's a list of what to watch out for at the airport (hint: most things), along with a couple items that are okay to dive into.</p> <h2>Worst Airport Buys</h2> <p>Plan ahead and you can avoid most of these pricey concourse purchases.</p> <h3>1. Personal Snacks and Drinks</h3> <p>While you should avoid bottled water altogether &mdash; it's bad for the environment and tap water is free, ya know &mdash; I understand that sometimes you need it. To avoid this impulse buy, add a water bottle to your packing list and keep it in your carry-on so you can fill it from the fountain when you're past security. If you forget your water bottle, remember this tip from Aaron Deutsch, founder of <a href="http://www.tellthem.co">TellThem.co</a>.</p> <p>&quot;If you need a bottle of water at the airport, my tip is to buy it from McDonald's, not the news shops&quot; he says. &quot;McDonald's typically charges $1.50 to $2 while the news stores charge $2.50 to 3.50. Small savings but nice!&quot;</p> <p>&quot;Healthy food is hard to find at the airport, and usually I bring what I need for the kids,&quot; adds Sandra Magura, author of the children's book <em><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1564924122/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=1564924122&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=XEQGDXVVM2DKADWI">HippoDuck &mdash; Trouble at the Airport</a></em>. &quot;But on those unexpected delayed flights sometimes you run short. When I did, I was forced to get something from one of the convenience stores. I ended up buying a granola bar for my two-year-old. He loves them and so do I. What I don't love is the $4 price tag that went along with it. I can buy a box of six at Walmart for $2. They got me that time, but I will be sure to pack extras on the next trip.&quot;</p> <h3>2. Wi-Fi</h3> <p>Airports are increasingly jumping on the free Wi-Fi bandwagon or offering personal tablets for free use when you're in the terminal, but there are still hubs that require you to pay for Internet service if you want to get online while you're at the terminal. Most of us can use our phone networks to do what we need to do, but if you need more capability or a bigger screen that can only operate with Wi-Fi, do some detective work before purchasing.&nbsp;<span style="font-size: 13px; line-height: 1.7em;">Pop into a few bars and restaurants to see if they offer it, or a Starbucks.</span></p> <h3>3. Headphones</h3> <p><span style="font-size: 13px; line-height: 1.7em;">If you forgot your set, ask your airline's attendants if the flight offers headphones. Instead of buying a $200 pair of Beats just because you see it at the wirport vending machine, find out if there are pairs for available on your flight, which usually only cost about $2.</span></p> <p>&quot;There is no reason that a set of headphones cannot have a permanent home in the side pocket of your carry on bag,&quot; adds John Z. Wetmore, producer for <a href="http://www.pedestrians.org/">Perils for Pedestrians</a> television. &quot;It takes very little planning to avoid overpriced last-minute purchases. Packing checklists are your friend if you have a tendency to leave things at home when you pack at the last minute.&quot;</p> <h3>4. Neck Pillows</h3> <p>You want to guess how many neck pillows are in my closet? Three! It seems like my husband buys a new pillow every time he flies, and those three aren't even counting the ones he's lost over the years. That's <em>hundreds</em> of dollars worth of <em>neck pillows</em>.</p> <p>I've never purchased a neck pillow in my life; it's always seemed like a huge waste of money to look so silly on an airplane to me. Instead, I bring my own travel-worn bed pillow from home (it's flat, so it's easy to travel with), or I ask for a blanket/pillow on the flight so I can cuddle up on the window or rest my head on the tray table. Much better than sleeping straight up with an inner tube around your neck, in my opinion.</p> <h3>5. Currency Exchange</h3> <p>The last time I traveled someplace where I needed to exchange currency, the dollar was worth half what it was at home &mdash; and that didn't include the fees that the service charged. That's a tough blow to take when you've saved for so long for something.</p> <p>DailyMail.com says, &quot;With so much else to sort out before you go away, it's tempting simply to purchase your foreign currency at the last minute in the airport departure lounge. But doing that means you'll pay significantly more than you need to, as airport bureaux de change offer some of the worst possible deals to walk-up customers.&quot;</p> <p>&quot;The alternatives? Pre-order currency. Earlier this week, buying &euro;500 on the spot at a Gatwick Moneycorp bureau would have cost you &pound;440.88. Had you ordered the &euro;500 online on <a href="http://www.moneycorp.com/">Moneycorp</a>&nbsp;to pick up at the airport, the cost would have been &pound;404.17.&quot;</p> <p>This is obviously an example from Europe, but you can apply the same principles in the United States when you're preparing for travel abroad.</p> <h3>6. Parking</h3> <p>Sometimes you have no other choice but to drive yourself to the airport and park. And you'll pay dearly for it. If you can help it, ask a friend or family member to give you a ride &mdash; slip 'em some cash for helping you save some &mdash; or use public transportation where available and convenient.</p> <h2>Best Airport Buys</h2> <p>Okay, not everything at the airport is a total ripoff.</p> <h3>1. Local Food/Beverage Souvenir Items</h3> <p>I'm not much for tangible souvenirs &mdash; just one more piece of junk I have to put out at the yard sale next year &mdash; so I prefer to preserve my trips' memories with photos that I can frame and local food items that I can consume when I'm home. For instance, I've purchased beignet dry mix from New Orleans and BBQ sauce from Memphis that bring back fond memories of each trip when I use them.</p> <p>Liz Dahl, founder of <a href="http://boomertravelpatrol.com/">Boomer Travel Patrol</a>, agrees that this is a best practice, especially on liquids.</p> <p>&quot;For me, the best buys are local products from the city the airport is located, especially the liquid items,&quot; she says. &quot;This is the place to buy those souvenirs, because you can take them on the plane with you at that point.&quot;</p> <p>The latter is a good point to remember if you're only traveling with a carry-on bag. You won't be happy if you have to give up a liquid item because you overlooked the rules while you were shopping.</p> <h3>2. Duty Free</h3> <p>If you're in the market for cigarettes or alcohol, you can score great deals at the duty-free shops. All other items, especially electronics and beauty products, aren't a very wise purchase as you usually can find them cheaper at home or online.</p> <p>Consider, however, that you're allowed to bring mini bottles of liquor onto your flight. That's right &mdash; according to <a href="http://blog.tsa.gov/2014/01/tsa-travel-tips-tuesday-traveling-with.html">The TSA Blog</a>, &quot;Travelers may carry as many 3.4 ounce bottles of liquid (mini bottles of liquor are 1.7 ounces) that fit comfortably in one, quart sized, clear plastic, zip-top bag. Comfortable means that the bag will seal without busting at the seams. One bag is permitted per passenger.&quot;</p> <p>That's pretty much an invitation to load up on the mini bottles at the duty-free shop.</p> <p>Of course, there's this stipulation: <a href="http://www.ecfr.gov/cgi-bin/text-idx?c=ecfr&amp;SID=03efb7c1b34301bf39ff6d98084cdd45&amp;rgn=div8&amp;view=text&amp;node=14:3.0.1.1.11.2.3.37&amp;idno=14">FAA regulations</a> state that &quot;No person may drink any alcoholic beverage aboard an aircraft unless the certificate holder operating the aircraft has served that beverage.&quot;</p> <p>But if you're savvy, you'll figure out how to make it work.</p> <p><em>Do you have other suggestions for best/worse airport buys? Let me know in the comments below.</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-8-worst-and-best-airport-buys">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-4"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/23-airport-hacks-to-remember-before-your-next-flight">23 Airport Hacks to Remember Before Your Next Flight</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-smart-travel-hacks-only-frequent-flyers-know">5 Smart Travel Hacks Only Frequent Flyers Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-cheap-ways-to-make-flying-coach-feel-like-first-class">5 Cheap Ways to Make Flying Coach Feel Like First Class</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/wise-bread-reloaded-the-surprisingly-easy-way-to-defend-your-knees-and-other-air-travel-tips">Wise Bread Reloaded: The Surprisingly Easy Way to Defend Your Knees and Other Air Travel Tips</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-hidden-comforts-to-consider-when-choosing-an-airline">5 Hidden Comforts to Consider When Choosing an Airline</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping Travel air travel airport flying Wed, 28 Jan 2015 18:00:11 +0000 Mikey Rox 1283485 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Ways Carry-On Luggage Can Save You Time and Money http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-carry-on-luggage-can-save-you-time-and-money <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-ways-carry-on-luggage-can-save-you-time-and-money" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/businessman-airplane-luggage-Dollarphotoclub_69149855.jpg" alt="businessman airplane luggage" title="businessman airplane luggage" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>I don't know about you, but just the thought of air travel fills me with dread. Booking a flight is a bit like agreeing to toss my schedule into a chipper-shredder for at least a day and embracing the Great Unknown. The whole process is just stressful enough that travelers are hungry for any tip or trick to help the whole process go a bit more smoothly. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-airport-hacks-from-professional-travelers?ref=seealso">15 Airport Hacks From Professional Traveler</a>s)</p> <p>After 15 years of living far enough from family that any visit requires a flight, I've adopted a personal travel policy that makes a world of difference: I <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/make-flying-easy-the-ultimate-carry-on-packing-list">pack strategically</a> and fit everything into a single carry-on bag. Seriously &mdash; I haven't checked a bag since the Clinton Administration. If you're still checking luggage when you fly, it's time for a change. Here are five ways you can save time and money by traveling with only a carry-on.</p> <h2>1. Easier Check-Ins</h2> <p>Without luggage to tag and check, you can skip the long lines at the check-in counter. Print your boarding passes beforehand or at the self-service check-in machines at the airport and then breeze right over to the TSA screening line. If you're running late, being able to dodge even a single slow-moving line can mean the difference between making your flight and screaming as you watch it taxi down the runway.</p> <h2>2. No Fees&hellip; Most of the Time</h2> <p>One of the most obvious benefits of traveling with a carry-on only is avoiding the notorious checked baggage fee. Depending on the carrier, these charges can range from $25<span style="color: rgb(84, 84, 84); font-family: arial, sans-serif; font-size: small; line-height: 18.2000007629395px;">&ndash;</span>$50 for the first two bags and up to $125 for each additional bag. For budget-conscious travelers, those numbers can add up quickly. And while the majority of airlines still don't charge for properly-sized carry-on bags, <a href="http://www.economist.com/blogs/gulliver/2014/05/carry-bag-fees">Frontier Airlines' new fees</a> may signify the first shot across the bow.</p> <h2>3. Itinerary Flexibility</h2> <p>During my most recent flight in August of last year, thunderstorms in Denver (my connecting city) left me stuck in Portland, Oregon. By checking-in with the gate attendant frequently, I was able to get rerouted through Chicago. The first question she asked me was &quot;Did you check any luggage?&quot; Of course I hadn't. I had everything I needed in a small carry-on slung over shoulder. No need to worry about where my luggage would end up and no need to make a special trip to the airport to pick up my belongings a day or two after I arrived at my final destination. I saved hours of time, avoided lots of drama, and dodged a major migraine.</p> <h2>4. Theft and Loss Avoidance</h2> <p>Take a second to Google this phrase: &quot;TSA theft checked luggage.&quot; If you still feel confident about the security of your checked luggage after wading through the 51,000 results, kudos to your boundless optimism. Though I don't travel with anything terribly expensive, I still cringe at the thought of someone thumbing through my daily planner, pocketing my favorite pair of sunglasses, or (worst of all), nabbing my fat jeans.</p> <h2>5. Speed and Convenience</h2> <p>Ever notice how antsy everyone gets as soon as a plane hits the tarmac? It's not because your fellow passengers have all developed a mad craving for a gooey Cinnabon &mdash; they're hoping to beat you to the car rental counter. Not having to wait for your luggage to be spit out onto the baggage carousel is a major benefit, especially if there are a limited number of rental cars or taxis available. Once again, the advantage goes to the traveler with the least amount of stuff to haul around.</p> <p>Let's face it, we live in a new era. <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-airline-travel-sucks-and-what-you-can-do-to-make-it-better">Air travel sucks</a> most of the time and all signs point to the whole process <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-8-scariest-things-probably-coming-to-air-travel">getting a lot scarier</a> for travelers in the not-too-distant future. Making it just a little more bearable means planning carefully, preparing diligently &mdash; and always packing lightly.</p> <p><em>Could you travel happily with a carry-on bag only? What ways do you save time and money when flying?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kentin-waits">Kentin Waits</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-carry-on-luggage-can-save-you-time-and-money">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-5"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/make-flying-easy-the-ultimate-carry-on-packing-list">Make Flying Easy: The Ultimate Carry-On Packing List</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/23-airport-hacks-to-remember-before-your-next-flight">23 Airport Hacks to Remember Before Your Next Flight</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-reasons-you-should-check-your-luggage">7 Reasons You Should Check Your Luggage</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-packing-secrets-from-a-professional-traveler">15 Packing Secrets From a Professional Traveler</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-8-worst-and-best-airport-buys">The 8 Worst and Best Airport Buys</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> General Tips Travel air travel airport carry-on luggage packing Tue, 27 Jan 2015 12:00:08 +0000 Kentin Waits 1283249 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Hidden Comforts to Consider When Choosing an Airline http://www.wisebread.com/5-hidden-comforts-to-consider-when-choosing-an-airline <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-hidden-comforts-to-consider-when-choosing-an-airline" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/passenger-sleeping-airline-477799187-small.jpg" alt="passenger sleeping airline" title="passenger sleeping airline" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Life is unfair and so is air travel. Two passengers may pay the same price to fly the same route, but have completely different experiences. Because airlines have varying standards of service, your comfort depends a lot on which airline you choose. Before you purchase your next airfare, check to see whether the airline offers the little things that might make the flight more enjoyable for you. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/tricks-to-make-flying-in-coach-feel-almost-luxurious?ref=seealso">Tricks to Make Flying in Coach Almost Luxurious</a>)</p> <h2>1. Seat Design</h2> <p>Airplane seats seem to shrink by the day. Passengers regularly fight over reclining seats and armrests. At the end of the journey, tall people limp off planes with bruised knees, while everyone else is just happy to be able to stretch again.</p> <p>To get more personal space in Economy Class, <a href="http://www.airlinequality.com/Product/seats_americas.htm">stick with these airlines when you fly within the U.S</a>:</p> <ul> <li>Frontier Airlines</li> <li>JetBlue Airways</li> <li>US Airways, and</li> <li>WestJet.</li> </ul> <p><a href="http://www.airlinequality.com/Product/seats_global.htm">For international flights</a>, choose:</p> <ul> <li>Aerolineas Argentinas</li> <li>Air China</li> <li>Air Namibia</li> <li>Air New Zealand</li> <li>Avianca</li> <li>Ghana International Airlines</li> <li>Malaysia Airlines</li> <li>Royal Jordania Airlines</li> <li>Saudi Arabian, or</li> <li>Thai Airways.</li> </ul> <p>At the other end of the spectrum are airlines with extra small seats.</p> <p><a href="http://www.airlinequality.com/Product/seats_americas.htm">Domestic airlines with cramped seats</a> include:</p> <ul> <li>AirTran Airways</li> <li>American Airlines</li> <li>Hawaiian Airlines, and</li> <li>United Airlines.</li> </ul> <p>However, in the case of AirTran Airways, the prices may be <a href="http://www.hopper.com/research/airline-comfort-customer-satisfaction-per-dollar/">cheap enough to excuse such tiny seats</a>.</p> <p>And because small seats are even more painful for long international flights, you may want to <a href="http://www.airlinequality.com/Product/seats_global.htm">avoid flying Economy Class on these airlines</a> altogether:</p> <ul> <li>Air France</li> <li>British Airways</li> <li>Cathay Pacific</li> <li>KLM</li> <li>Lufthansa, and</li> <li>Qantas Airways.</li> </ul> <h2>2. Entertainment</h2> <p>Experiencing the miracle of flight means staying still in the same seat for hours, staring at the back of the seat in front of you. This is why in-flight entertainment is crucial.</p> <p><a href="http://www.techhive.com/article/2070166/in-flight-entertainment-which-airline-offers-the-best.html">For domestic flights within the U.S.</a>, Virgin America provides the best in-flight entertainment, with free live TV and basic cable channels. If you're willing to pay more, you can gain access to movies and TV shows. If in-flight entertainment is important for you, you may want to avoid American Airlines, Southwest Airlines, and US Airways.</p> <p>If you're flying internationally and want first-class entertainment, you can't go wrong with <a href="http://www.theemiratesgroup.com/english/our-company/Copy_of_awards-accolades.aspx?brand=Emirates">Emirates</a>. This airline has consistently won the prestigious Skytrax World Airline Awards for the World's Best In-flight Entertainment every year since 2005. Besides hundreds of channels of entertainment, Emirates also offers live updates from BBC News. You can also use the in-flight system to phone someone, send text messages, or send emails.</p> <h2>3. Food</h2> <p>Airplane food has been the butt of many jokes, but some airlines do try to offer decent food on board.</p> <p><a href="http://www.forbes.com/sites/katiebell/2012/09/17/master-sommeliers-and-michelin-stars-take-to-the-skies/">Delta Air Lines</a>, for example, creates its dishes by collaborating with Michelle Bernstein, who is an award-winning chef, and Andrea Robinson, who is a Master Sommelier.</p> <p>Thanks to similar efforts on the part of non-American airlines, you can get a taste of authentic international fares while flying. Some of <a href="http://www.forbes.com/sites/katiebell/2012/09/17/master-sommeliers-and-michelin-stars-take-to-the-skies/">the best</a> <a href="http://www.epicurious.com/articlesguides/diningtravel/restaurants/foreign-airlines-best-food">airlines</a> in terms of food are Air France, Turkish Airlines, Air New Zealand, Singapore Airlines, Cathay Pacific Airways, Emirates Airline, and Etihad Airways.</p> <h2>4. Wi-Fi and Power Outlets</h2> <p>Gone are the days when you could truly unplug during flights. Not all airlines offer Wi-Fi and in-seat power yet, but it's now possible to stay productive in the air.</p> <p>According to a research by Routehappy, 38% of domestic flights now offer Wi-Fi on board. If this is something you want, choose Virgin America or AirTran next time you fly. Many of Delta Air Lines and Southwest Airlines planes are also equipped with Wi-Fi.</p> <p>Only a small percentage of international flights offer Wi-Fi. You'll have better chances of getting Wi-Fi on board if you fly Lufthansa.</p> <h2>5. Customer Service</h2> <p>It's tough to rate airlines based on something as intangible as their quality of service, but Skytrax, a UK consultancy company, tries regardless. <a href="http://www.airlinequality.com/Airlines/AirlineA-Z.htm">Skytrax gives airlines star ratings</a> based on &quot;the quality of their front-line product and staff service standards.&quot; Seven airlines have received its five-star rating: ANA All Nippon Airways, Asiana Airlines, Cathay Pacific Airways, Hainan Airlines, Malaysia Airlines, Qatar Airways, and Singapore Airlines.</p> <h2>Additional Resources</h2> <p>If you need more in depth information about the comfort and amenities of an upcoming flight, refer to these additional resources.</p> <h3>Routehappy</h3> <p>If you're a discerning passenger, <a href="https://www.routehappy.com">Routehappy</a> is the booking site for you. It gives every airfare a happiness score, which is determined by a slew of factors: seats, entertainment, Wi-Fi, power supply, food, airport amenities, and many more.</p> <h3>Momondo</h3> <p>When this website shows you its search results, there is a smiley (or frowny) face for every airfare. <a href="http://www.momondo.com">Momondo</a> rates every flight on a scale of 1 to 10 based on how long the flight will be and how cheap the airfare is.</p> <h3>Hipmunk</h3> <p><a href="http://www.hipmunk.com">Hipmunk</a> sorts its search results by &quot;Agony,&quot; taking into account the airfare price, flight time, and number of layovers.</p> <h3>SeatGuru</h3> <p>This site is a treasure trove of information on plane seating. If you already know your flight, <a href="http://www.seatguru.com">SeatGuru</a> can help you find the best seat in the plane. It has also rolled out a feature to search and book flights. Its Guru Factor (or G-Factor) rates flights on a scale of one to five based on seat comfort and in-flight amenities.</p> <h3>AirlineEquality.com</h3> <p>At <a href="http://www.airlinequality.com">AirlineEquality</a> you can find ratings and reviews on legroom and service. The website design needs a little updating, but it's run by Skytrax and has some useful information.</p> <p><em>How do you fly comfortably? Please share in comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/deia-b">Deia B</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-hidden-comforts-to-consider-when-choosing-an-airline">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-6"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/wise-bread-reloaded-the-surprisingly-easy-way-to-defend-your-knees-and-other-air-travel-tips">Wise Bread Reloaded: The Surprisingly Easy Way to Defend Your Knees and Other Air Travel Tips</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-smart-travel-hacks-only-frequent-flyers-know">5 Smart Travel Hacks Only Frequent Flyers Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-8-worst-and-best-airport-buys">The 8 Worst and Best Airport Buys</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/23-airport-hacks-to-remember-before-your-next-flight">23 Airport Hacks to Remember Before Your Next Flight</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-cheap-ways-to-make-flying-coach-feel-like-first-class">5 Cheap Ways to Make Flying Coach Feel Like First Class</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Travel air travel airline comfort flying Fri, 10 Oct 2014 09:00:04 +0000 Deia B 1230390 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Ways Airline Travel Sucks — and What You Can Do to Make It Better http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-airline-travel-sucks-and-what-you-can-do-to-make-it-better <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-ways-airline-travel-sucks-and-what-you-can-do-to-make-it-better" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/flight-delay-499437107-small.jpg" alt="flight delay" title="flight delay" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Call it the week that airline travelers couldn't take it anymore. Three different <a href="http://www.businessinsider.com/another-passenger-fight-over-reclining-seats-has-caused-a-flight-to-be-diverted-2014-9">flights were diverted</a> so passengers could be removed, all of them squabbling over one issue: Reclining seat backs.</p> <p>In one case, a traveler <a href="http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/breaking/chi-knee-defender-passenger-20140904-story.html">used a Knee Defender</a> device to prevent the seat in front of him from reclining. In all the cases, the real issue was that flyers are now packed so close together in coach airplane seats that they can't help invading one another's space.</p> <p>&quot;Travelers aren't sardines. There's a line there of comfort and the quality of experience,&quot; Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx told <a href="http://www.cntraveler.com/stories/2014-09-16/dot-chief-speaks-out-on-knee-defender-controversy">Condé Nast Traveler</a> in an interview after the rash of in-flight meltdowns. &quot;My hope is that the industry sees these incidents as a message from consumers that maybe they are getting a little close to that line.&quot; (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-8-scariest-things-probably-coming-to-air-travel?ref=seealso">The 8 Scariest Things Possibly Coming to Air Travel</a>)</p> <p>Legroom isn't the only issue bugging us in the air these days. Overall, airlines garner <a href="http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2013-06-18/business/ct-biz-0618-airlines-satisfaction-20130618_1_southwest-airlines-customer-satisfaction-jeff-smisek">worse customer satisfaction scores</a> than almost any industry. How far we have come since jet setters made selections from cheese carts and wandered freely through <a href="http://www.messynessychic.com/2014/03/13/lets-reminisce-airplanes-piano-bars-cocktail-lounges-pubs-restaurants/">lounges with live music</a>?</p> <p>Like flight delays, this list could go on forever, so we've kept it to the top five things that suck about flying.</p> <h2>1. You Can't Move Your Legs</h2> <p>It's not just the Knee Defender users who noticed.</p> <p>A standard coach seat has always been too narrow for most people to sit comfortably, with 17 to 19 inches between armrests. But as airlines have pushed to add revenue, they have moved the rows closer and closer together, so that now there is only <a href="http://www.cnn.com/2012/05/30/travel/airline-seats/">31 to 35 inches</a> from one seat to the one behind it. Not only does this cause reclining seats to bash into knees, but it makes it nearly impossible for a window seat passenger to get up and use the restroom without sticking her butt in the face of the middle and aisle-seat passengers.</p> <p>Many international flights now have an <a href="http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702304384104579141941949066648">extra seat squeezed into each row</a>, too. Too-narrow seats force passengers to let their arms dangle into the aisle, where they get clobbered by the drink cart and by other passengers hauling bags and car seats.</p> <h3>What You Can Do About It</h3> <p>It's pretty clear at this point that Knee Defenders aren't the way to go, and besides, most airlines ban the devices. All you can really do is pony up for an extra legroom section like <a href="http://www.united.com/CMS/en-US/products/travelproducts/Pages/EconomyPlus.aspx?utm_source=google&amp;utm_medium=cpc&amp;utm_campaign=business_pillar&amp;utm_term=extra_legroom&amp;gclid=CKif5_L47cACFUMYfgodYSMALA&amp;gclsrc=ds&amp;dclid=CLCo9PL47cACFTDPRAodRm4Anw">United's Economy Plus</a>, finagle an <a href="http://www.airfarewatchdog.com/blog/8067465/how-to-get-exit-row-seats-chart/">exit row seat</a>, or at least try for the aisle so you can throw your legs out there (watch out for the beverage cart).</p> <p>Also, consider leaving your own seat upright to avoid contributing to the discomfort of others. A recent survey revealed that if you recline your seat, <a href="http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2757312/Which-passengers-make-flight-hell-Seat-recliners-taken-spot-new-survey-smelly-passengers-soared-second.html">other passengers hate you</a>.</p> <h2>2. You Can't Get Anything to Eat</h2> <p>Once upon a time, your wish was your flight attendant's command.</p> <p>&quot;People were given pillows, blankets, magazines, playing cards, pens and a hot meal, wine, top-shelf liquor &mdash; and that was just in economy,&quot; former Pan American World Airways flight attendant <a href="http://abcnews.go.com/GMA/Weekend/airline-decline-flying-high-reached-lows/story?id=9832262">Anne Sweeney told ABC</a>.</p> <p>Nowadays, many airlines &mdash; AirTran, Southwest, Spirit &mdash; have no meals on board, while others &mdash; JetBlue, American &mdash; <a href="http://www.independenttraveler.com/travel-tips/air-travel/a-guide-to-airline-meals-and-snacks">sell boxed meals</a>. Most international travelers still get a hot meal, at least &mdash; probably to avoid violating any international treaties on torture of prisoners.</p> <h3>What You Can Do About It</h3> <p>Not much, except carry a meal onboard.</p> <h2>3. You Can't Find Room for Your Bag</h2> <p>Spud Hilton, travel editor of The San Francisco Chronicle, kicked off a carry-on controversy when he created the the <a href="http://blog.sfgate.com/travel/2014/06/23/carry-on-hall-of-shame/">Carry-on Hall of Shame</a> to highlight passengers trying to haul larger-than-regulation bags onto planes.</p> <p>They don't want to pay to check the larger bags &mdash; and who would? But Hilton says these passengers aren't just cheating the airline, they're cheating you.</p> <p>&quot;The increasingly aggressive disregard for the size standards &mdash; which has led to flight delays, a much longer boarding process, abusive passengers, and increased theft from gate-checked bags &mdash; also is disregard for everyone else on the plane,&quot; Hilton wrote on his blog.</p> <h3>What You Can Do About It</h3> <p>Call out overhead bin hogs. If you don't have the nerve to tap someone on the shoulder to inform them that their suitcase doesn't qualify as a carry-on, you can snap their picture and <a href="http://blog.sfgate.com/travel/2014/06/05/time-to-smack-down-carry-on-offenders/#24011101=0">upload it to Twitter or Instagram</a> with the hashtag #CarryonShame. The publicity could push the airlines to start enforcing their own rules.</p> <h2>4. You Can't Get Away From People Like This</h2> <p>Remember when people used to dress up to fly? Or at least get dressed?</p> <p>Passenger Shaming, on <a href="https://www.facebook.com/PassengerShaming/photos_stream">Facebook</a> and <a href="http://instagram.com/passengershaming">Instagram</a>, posts photos of <a href="http://instagram.com/p/tBfOEfS6lk/?modal=true">shirtless</a> and <a href="http://instagram.com/p/tAjeJtS6po/?modal=true">barefooted</a> passengers, people <a href="http://instagram.com/p/tF5GMDy6jf/?modal=true">making out in their seats</a>, and even a kid <a href="http://instagram.com/p/s_ik5_S6pw/?modal=true">using a potty chair</a> in the aisle. Even <a href="https://twitter.com/Donald_Driver80/status/512666823523696640">Superbowl champions in first class</a> can't always avoid other passengers behaving badly. Then there's the auditory pollution from passengers who play movies with no headphones, and the air pollution from those who douse themselves in cologne.</p> <h3>What You Can Do About It</h3> <p>Bring a <a href="https://www.yahoo.com/travel/ridiculous-travel-accesories-that-will-c1409151932617.html">curtain to shield your eyes</a>? Take a sedative and try to sleep through the indignity? Play Bozo Bingo? Whatever gets you through the flight.</p> <h2>5. You Can't Get There on Time</h2> <p>2013 was the <a href="http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702304347904579308640380117768">worst year for flight reliability</a> in the past five, with only 78% of flights arriving on time, according to FlightStats, Inc.</p> <p>The most miserable delays are tarmac delays, when passengers are stuck in planes on runways for hours without going anywhere. Tarmac delays have gotten so bad that the government stepped in to assert passengers' right not to be held hostage on runways, but they still happen. In fact, last year <a href="http://www.usatoday.com/story/travel/flights/2013/10/25/dot-hits-united-with-record-fine-for-long-tarmac-delays/3188127/">United had to pay $1.1 million</a> in fines for 13 times it left passengers stranded in their seats for more than three hours &mdash; including two planes where the toilets weren't working.</p> <h3>What You Can Do About It</h3> <p>Fortunately there are strategies for <a href="http://www.parksleepfly.com/blog/how-to-avoid-flight-delays/">avoiding flight delays</a>. Fly nonstop, fly early in the day, and don't connect in Denver in the wintertime. If you have a choice, some <a href="http://www.travelandleisure.com/articles/americas-best-airports-for-avoiding-flight-delays">airports have fewer delays</a> than others.</p> <p>This list could go on and on.</p> <p>Poor customer service, lost luggage, germy tray tables, out-of-control children, turbulence, security lines &mdash; what's not to hate about air travel these days? While there is not much we can do about many of these discomforts, we actually have a ton of power over the flight experience &mdash; of other people. Be the change you want to see in the air. Be polite. Help parents of small children. Don't leave your gum in the seatback pocket. Thank the flight attendant. Flush. Don't block the aisle. And for goodness sake, keep your shirt on.</p> <p><em>What's your worst in-flight experience? Please share in comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/carrie-kirby">Carrie Kirby</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-airline-travel-sucks-and-what-you-can-do-to-make-it-better">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-7"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-smart-travel-hacks-only-frequent-flyers-know">5 Smart Travel Hacks Only Frequent Flyers Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/heres-how-the-major-airlines-determine-when-and-how-you-board">Here&#039;s How the Major Airlines Determine When and How You Board</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-airline-lost-your-luggage-now-what">The Airline Lost Your Luggage. Now What?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-airport-hacks-from-professional-travelers">15 Airport Hacks From Professional Travelers</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/23-airport-hacks-to-remember-before-your-next-flight">23 Airport Hacks to Remember Before Your Next Flight</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Travel air travel airlines airplanes airports Wed, 01 Oct 2014 15:00:07 +0000 Carrie Kirby 1224393 at http://www.wisebread.com 23 Airport Hacks to Remember Before Your Next Flight http://www.wisebread.com/23-airport-hacks-to-remember-before-your-next-flight <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/23-airport-hacks-to-remember-before-your-next-flight" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/businessman-airport-78655089-small.jpg" alt="businessman airport" title="businessman airport" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Traveling is always a fun and exciting experience, but getting through the airport can be a struggle. If it happens to be an unlucky day, you'll get stuck with long lines, rude airport security officials, or delayed flights. Luckily with just a little bit of research, there are many ways you can make your journey faster and more comfortable. We rounded up all the tips and tricks so you don't have to! Learn to navigate airports like a pro with the advice below. You'll be surprised how much time and money you end up saving.</p> <p>RELATED: <a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Expert-Travel-Tips-31926521">Expert Travel Tips You Never Thought Of</a></p> <h2>1. Bring Your Own Ziploc Bags</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/ziploc%20bags.jpg" alt="" /></p> <p>Since TSA requires you to separate your liquids into clear plastic bags, it is always a good idea to bring spare Ziploc bags in case you lose one or if you're buying tiny travel liquids last minute. For carry-on bags, TSA has a <a href="http://www.tsa.gov/traveler-information/3-1-1-liquids-rule">3-1-1 liquids rule</a> and you are only allowed to have one quart-sized clear plastic bag.</p> <h2>2. Freeze Your Liquids to Bring on Planes</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/frozen%20drink.jpg" alt="" /></p> <p>The only con to this trick is your liquids must actually be frozen solid like a rock. If you're on a long flight, however, consider freezing your favorite drinks.</p> <h2>3. Pack Your Own Snacks</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/airplane%20snacks.jpg" alt="" /></p> <p>If you can, you should avoid buying snacks and drinks at airports because they're overpriced. Instead, pack nuts, cereal bars, candy, and other dry goods to munch on while you wait for your flight.</p> <h2>4. Bring an Empty Water Bottle</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/empty%20water%20bottle.jpg" /></p> <p>Like snacks, water usually costs a lot more at airports. The best way to cheat the system is to bring an empty water bottle or canteen and fill it up once you get past security checkpoints.</p> <h2>5. Take a Nap at the Airport</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/napping%20airport.jpg" /></p> <p>Some airports, like London's Heathrow, offer <a href="http://www.cntraveler.com/galleries/2013-10-29/5-awesome-airport-nap-pods-around-the-world/2">sleeping pods</a> where you can catch up on rest between long flight transfers. Pay $39 for four hours and you can take a shower (body wash and towels are provided) and enjoy a comfortable nap (not on the airport floor). If you're traveling internationally, check to see if your airport location offers this sleeping amenity. Your body will thank you.</p> <h2>6. Pick the Checkpoint Farthest to the Left</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/airport%20security%20checkpoint.jpg" /></p> <p>If you hate waiting in line (and who doesn't?), research shows that most people are right-handed and tend to turn right first, so do the opposite and go left. For more on how to find faster airport security lines, follow <a href="http://www.post-gazette.com/life/travel/2006/04/11/The-gate-less-traveled-Finding-faster-airport-security-lines/stories/200604110205">these tips</a>.</p> <h2>7. Sign Up For a VIP Airport Lounge</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/airport%20vip%20lounge.jpg" /></p> <p>If you're a frequent flier, you can use your flyer miles to buy a membership to <a href="http://www.travelandleisure.com/articles/vip-airport-lounges-how-to-get-in/1">airport lounges</a>. Most lounges also offer day passes (under $50). These private, fancy spots are perfect for resting and offer amenities such as a great bar and knowledgeable staff.</p> <h2>8. Don't Be Afraid to Ask For Free Things</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/free%20flight%20gifts.jpg" /></p> <p>Especially when it comes to flight upgrades. Take advantage of special events; if you were recently married (on your honeymoon) or have a birthday, tell the airline staff &mdash; they may be willing to upgrade you. Traveling alone also makes it easier to ask for a flight upgrade as well as just simply asking! Do so quietly, and the worse that can happen is a polite no.</p> <h2>9. Bring Alcohol on the Plane</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/mini%20alchohol%20bottles.jpg" /></p> <p>You're allowed to take bottles of alcohol that are 100ml or less through security as long as they fit into your one-quart Ziploc bag.</p> <h2>10. Wear Your Extra Luggage</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/excess%20baggage.jpg" alt="" /></p> <p>Worried about your carry-on going over the weight limit? Wear the heaviest items and wear layers to get past security. Then head to the nearest bathroom and switch out of the clothes.</p> <h2>11. Fly Red-Eye</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/night%20flight.jpg" /></p> <p>If you really hate packed airports and rush-hour traffic and don't mind overnight flights, try booking a plane that leaves past 10 p.m. You can simply go to sleep and wake up at your next destination without all the usual airport hassle.</p> <h2>12. Collect Unused Hotel Toiletries</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/hotel%20toiletries.jpg" /></p> <p>And bring them with you next time you travel. These mini bottles are the perfect carry-on items, and you won't have to shell out the extra money for reusable bottles or travel liquids.</p> <h2>13. Sign Up For TSA Precheck or Global Entry</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/global%20entry.jpg" /></p> <p>These programs allow you to bypass long lines and get into another country twice as fast. <a href="http://www.cbp.gov/global-entry/locations">Check to see</a> if you can apply for global entry.</p> <h2>14. Store Your Laptop in an Easy-to-Access Place</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/laptop%20bag.jpg" /></p> <p>If you don't have a laptop case, invest in one. Security usually makes you scan your laptop separately, so always have it in an easy-to-reach spot of your bag or suitcase.</p> <h2>15. Always Check For Free WiFi</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/airport%20wifi.jpg" /></p> <p>There is also a trick circulating that adding &quot;?.jpg&quot; to the end of a URL allows you to access the Internet for free.</p> <h2>16. Wear Glasses</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/glasses.jpg" alt="" /></p> <p>If you wear contacts, you'll notice how your eyes often get really dry during the flight (as well as the rest of your skin). Glasses may not make a fashion statement, but you'll be comfortable, and you can always switch into contacts once you land.</p> <h2>17. Bring a Light Scarf or Sweater</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/sleeping%20blanket.jpg" alt="" /></p> <p>Always expect an airport or plane to be cold. Bring a light blanket or extra sweater, hoodie, or scarf to keep yourself warm before and during the flight.</p> <h2>18. Bring Wet Wipes</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/wet%20wipes.jpg" alt="" /></p> <p>Planes are one of the easiest places to catch germs and a cold. Pack wet wipes to use during the flight or while you're at the airport. They'll keep your hands clean and refresh your face after a flight.</p> <h2>19. Check Airport Real-Time Conditions</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/flight%20status.jpg" alt="" /></p> <p>Check to see <a href="http://apps.tsa.dhs.gov/mytsa/">what's happening</a> at your airport (whether there's a delay in flights, long lines, or other issues) before you leave your home.</p> <h2>20. Wrap Your Luggage Handle</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/luggage%20tag.jpg" alt="" /></p> <p>If you're the type to worry about someone else taking your luggage, make your suitcase identifiable by tying brightly colored fabric or ribbon to the handles. You'll be able to spot that red bow amid all the black suitcases rolling out.</p> <h2>21. Carry a Portable Battery Charger</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/portable%20phone%20charger.jpg" alt="" /></p> <p>Airports have charging stations, and that's usually the spot everyone gravitates toward. And often you can't get a seat next to an outlet, so you end up standing off to the side while keeping an eye on your phone that's charging. To be on the safe side, carry around a small portable charger that you can pull out anytime.</p> <h2>22. Skip the Taxi Service</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/airport%20bus.jpg" alt="" /></p> <p>Check out the local transportation systems at your airport destination. See if there are air trains you can take to a regular metro or a bus that will take you to your destination. Avoid taxi services if you can, but if you really want to travel via car, check out services like Uber (which can be a lot cheaper in European countries).</p> <h2>23. Download Offline Google Maps</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/google%20maps.jpg" alt="" /></p> <p>In case there is no WiFi when you land at your destination and you have a limited online data plan, download the Google Maps app beforehand.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-blog-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> The airport is no picnic, but you can make it bearable with this collection of clever air transport how-tos and workarounds. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-guestpost-blurb"> <div class="field-label">Guest Post Blurb:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p style="text-align:center;"><a style="border:none;" href="http://www.savvysugar.com"><img style="height:95px; width:300px" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u921/POPSUGARrgb.jpg" alt="" /></a></p> <p><em>This is a guest contribution from our friends at </em><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/"><em>POPSUGAR Smart Living</em></a><em>. Check out more useful articles from this partner:</em></p> <ul> <li><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Travel-Essentials-Help-You-Save-6349005">Pack These 11 Travel Essentials to Save Money</a></li> <li><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Make-Money-While-Vacation-35370117">10 Ways to Earn Money While You're on Vacation</a></li> <li><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/tech/Travel-Guide-Apps-33481576">6 Travel Apps For the Best Vacation Ever</a></li> </ul> <p>&nbsp;</p> </div> </div> </div> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/popsugar-smart-living">POPSUGAR Smart Living</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/23-airport-hacks-to-remember-before-your-next-flight">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-8"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-8-worst-and-best-airport-buys">The 8 Worst and Best Airport Buys</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-get-more-legroom-on-your-next-flight-for-free">5 Ways to Get More Legroom on Your Next Flight — for Free</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/24-helpful-travel-hacks-to-make-flying-stress-free">24 Helpful Travel Hacks to Make Flying Stress-Free</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-carry-on-luggage-can-save-you-time-and-money">5 Ways Carry-On Luggage Can Save You Time and Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-smart-travel-hacks-only-frequent-flyers-know">5 Smart Travel Hacks Only Frequent Flyers Know</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> General Tips Travel air travel airlines airport flying Fri, 26 Sep 2014 21:00:03 +0000 POPSUGAR Smart Living 1214846 at http://www.wisebread.com The 8 Scariest Things Probably Coming to Air Travel http://www.wisebread.com/the-8-scariest-things-probably-coming-to-air-travel <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-8-scariest-things-probably-coming-to-air-travel" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/stressed-traveler-124821906-small.jpg" alt="stressed traveler" title="stressed traveler" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Hands up if you remember getting free meals on your flights.</p> <p>It wasn't too long ago that we got free checked bags, and did not have to pay for headphones or blankets, either. As time goes on, the airline industry is making changes that keep themselves in profit, and us wishing we had the money to fly first class. Or better yet, have our own plane. And things are only going to get worse. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/tricks-to-make-flying-in-coach-feel-almost-luxurious?ref=seealso">Tricks to Make Flying in Coach (Almost) as Luxurious as Flying First Class</a>)</p> <p>Here are eight &quot;innovations&quot; that may be coming to an airline that you fly regularly. Don't be surprised if you see these changes sooner rather than later. What was once something comedians joked about is going to become the reality for almost all of us.</p> <h2>1. Vertical Passenger Seating</h2> <p>That's a fancy ways of saying &quot;standing seats.&quot; If that sounds like an oxymoron, it is. But, the one thing this invention has going for it is money. Fairuz Romili, an aerospace engineering professor at the Universal Putra Malaysia, says the standing seat would &quot;lead to a 21% increase in passenger capacity, while dropping ticket prices by as much as 44%.&quot; Think about that for a second. Yes, it sounds (and <a href="http://www.cnn.com/2014/07/10/travel/standing-cabin-plane-study/">looks</a>) very uncomfortable. Yes, it will also lead to a huge amount of people in economy class, meaning it will take even longer to get drinks and snacks. But, if it dropped the price of a ticket from $300 to $156, would you take it?</p> <h2>2. Limited Lavatories (Or Toilet Fees!)</h2> <p>Can you hold it? You might just have to.</p> <p>Cheaper airlines, also known as budget airlines, are looking into a few bathroom ideas that can chop the price of your ticket. One idea is to have just one toilet per plane. On a smaller aircraft, not such a big deal. On a 747 or 777, you better learn to cross your legs and think of something else. The other option is to charge you to go; literally, spending a dollar to spend a penny. Either one of these would be pushed on you with some great marketing spin. &quot;We're reducing frills to bring you the best possible price on your flight.&quot; Great&hellip; until you have to wait 45 minutes to answer the call of nature.</p> <h2>3. The Fat Tax</h2> <p>Some airlines are already &quot;suggesting&quot; or insisting that obese people buy two seats instead of just one. Sometimes, in the case of <a href="http://www.nydailynews.com/news/world/obese-man-forced-buy-plane-tickets-seats-rows-article-1.1484738">Les Price</a>, they don't even give you two adjacent seats, which makes no sense at all. However, soon it won't be just purchasing extra seats. You may very well have to &quot;weigh in at check in,&quot; and if you tip the skills over a certain weight, the price of your ticket will go up. For example, males over 250 pounds and females over 200 pounds will pay extra to fly on the plane, even if they fit into a single seat just fine. This could also impact healthy people, like bodybuilders and professional athletes, who are heavy without being obese in the real sense of the word. Imagine being told your ticket will cost one third more because you're a bit on the heavy side. It's coming.</p> <h2>4. Women Only in the Cabin Crew</h2> <p>Not that having only women in the crew is bad for passengers, but it certainly isn't good for any men looking for a career in that field. How will that save money, or be beneficial? Well, we already know that women earn less than men in the same role. But according to GoAir, <a href="http://www.cnn.com/2013/06/29/travel/airline-recruits-women-to-save-fuel/">hiring only women makes sense</a> because they are, on average, &quot;15-20 kilos lighter than the average man.&quot; Is that sexism, or simply a statement of fact from GoAir? Well, however you feel about it, you can expect to see either less men in the air, or only people weighing less than a certain amount.</p> <h2>5. In-Flight Phone Calls Are Coming</h2> <p>Currently, the U.S. government says <a href="http://online.wsj.com/articles/u-s-moves-closer-to-formal-rules-barring-in-flight-cellphone-calls-1407096288">no to mid-flight cell phone conversations</a>. However, lobbyists will change that sooner or later, and when it happens you can expect your flight to be filled with inconsiderate people who absolutely cannot wait to make that call. This is, without a doubt, going to be the most irritating and awful thing to change the way we fly. Pack noise-cancelling headphones and earplugs. Lots of earplugs.</p> <h2>6. You're Doing Everything Yourself</h2> <p>We all like autonomy, but when we're flying there are still some things we like to have a trained professional for. Sometimes, they can really help when it comes to getting us on different flights, changing times, adding to our itinerary, and so on. The future is going to be completely automated. Right now, you can get onto a plane without really seeing anyone if you're doing a short hop without checked bags. That is going to change. You will be tagging your own bags and loading them onto the conveyor belt. You'll use a thumbprint to identify yourself and get on and off the plane. You'll even have to get your own food and drinks on the plane. Why pay people when you can do it for the airlines for free?</p> <h2>7. More Overbooked Flights</h2> <p>In the past, you would often fly with enough empty seats on the plane to lie down and take a nap. That will never happen in the future. To ensure &quot;maximum profit margins,&quot; every flight will be seriously overbooked. This will result in more delays at airports, and incredible complications with connecting flights and hotel reservations. You could always go and complain to someone, but of course, you'll be greeted by a computer terminal with no feelings about the matter either way.</p> <h2>8. Massive Aircraft</h2> <p>We already know about the ginormous <a href="http://www.airbus.com/aircraftfamilies/passengeraircraft/a380family/">Airbus A380</a>. That's only just the beginning. Plans are already underway to build something bigger. One such idea is the <a href="http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2538651/The-future-air-travel-Three-storey-Sky-Whale-fits-755-passengers-virtual-reality-windows-self-healing-wings.html">Sky Whale</a>, which would hold 755 passengers split into three different classes (and only those in first would enjoy the experience). Getting onto a plane that big will take a long, long time. Getting anything to eat or drink will take equally as long. And getting off, well, don't make any immediate plans when you arrive at the airport. Of course, if one of these things ever crashes, it's going to be a devastating tragedy. And one day, Sky Dinosaurs could carry 1500 people at once. The cost of fuel by then will be so expensive, it will probably not cut the price of the ticket by much.</p> <p><em>What nightmarish future airline plans are you dreading?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-8-scariest-things-probably-coming-to-air-travel">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/23-airport-hacks-to-remember-before-your-next-flight">23 Airport Hacks to Remember Before Your Next Flight</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/heres-how-the-major-airlines-determine-when-and-how-you-board">Here&#039;s How the Major Airlines Determine When and How You Board</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-airline-lost-your-luggage-now-what">The Airline Lost Your Luggage. Now What?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/travel-on-amtrak">Travel on Amtrak</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-airline-travel-sucks-and-what-you-can-do-to-make-it-better">5 Ways Airline Travel Sucks — and What You Can Do to Make It Better</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Travel air travel airlines cost cutting customer service Wed, 17 Sep 2014 13:00:07 +0000 Paul Michael 1211247 at http://www.wisebread.com The 10 Cheapest Ways to Fly First Class http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-cheapest-ways-to-fly-first-class <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-10-cheapest-ways-to-fly-first-class" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/first-class-airline-dv2073081-small.jpg" alt="first class airline" title="first class airline" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>There was once a time when you could show up at the gate early, dressed nicely, and have a smiling attendant hand you a free upgrade to first class without even asking for it. Now, access to the front of the plane isn't as easy, and requires a bit more of a scientific approach. But this doesn't mean you need to pay the full fare; in fact very few passengers ever do. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-airport-hacks-from-professional-travelers?ref=seealso">15 Airport Hacks by Professional Travelers</a>)</p> <p>Here are 10 of the cheapest ways to fly first class.</p> <h2>Before You Go</h2> <p>Before you even pack your bag, here are a few handy tricks for nabbing a first class fare.</p> <h3>Search and You Might Find</h3> <p>Most people search for economy fares, figuring that first class fares are out of reach. However this isn't always the case. I was recently searching for a ticket from Toronto to Lima. I did the standard search on a variety of search engines, all in economy class of course. Then, I performed the same search in first class, and &mdash; glory be &mdash; I found a first class flight, for $50 more than the equivalent economy ticket. Airlines will occasionally (and very quietly) offer deep discounts on first class airfare. It always pays to search your desired flight itinerary in both economy and first class.</p> <h3>Mystery Shopping</h3> <p>Using your eagle eyes to fill out a detailed questionnaire about your experience, you can score half price flights, free hotels, and other travel deals with mystery shopping. Half price off a first class flight is a pretty good deal, but it's even sweeter if you wait for a seat sale and get half price off the sale-priced ticket, or take advantage of periodic mystery shopping promotions that entail a free upgrade to first class. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-sign-up-for-half-price-flights-and-free-hotels?ref=seealso">How to Sign up For Half Price Flights and Free Hotels</a>).</p> <h3>Frequent Flyer Miles</h3> <p>Although a somewhat obvious approach, I'm surprised at how many people stare at me with wonder when I tell them that all my long-haul flights are in first class, mainly due to frequent flyer mile accumulation. With a little patience and some attention to detail, you can acquire enough frequent flyer miles to fly in first class, which often represents the best value per mile you can get. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/everything-you-need-to-know-about-frequent-flyer-miles?ref=seealso">Everything You Need to Know About Frequent Flyer Miles</a>)</p> <h3>Frequent Flyer Mile Upgrades</h3> <p>Frequent flyer mile gurus will attest to the value of purchasing economy tickets and using miles for upgrading to first class. Although I can't attest to this technique (I usually book it in first class to begin with, just to be sure), you can learn more about it through the <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-travel-hacking-cartel-fly-around-the-world-for-almost-free?ref=seealso">Travel Hacking Cartel</a>.</p> <h2>At Check-In</h2> <p>You've still got an economy ticket in your hand and your bags are packed, but hope is not lost. Here are some techniques for cheap (or free) first class upgrades.</p> <h3>Mention a Special Occasion</h3> <p>Make it known (in as natural a way as possible) that you're just married, or traveling home to hug your mother for your milestone birthday, or celebrating a noteworthy anniversary, and you might find yourself upgraded to first class for free.</p> <h3>Dress the Part</h3> <p>If you dress and act the part, an upgraded boarding pass could land in your hands. Depending on the route and airline, however, don't hold your breath. If you fly frequently for work, you're more likely to score an upgrade with your elite frequent flyer status rather than by having a snazzy suit at check-in.</p> <h3>Ask About Miles/Cash Upgrades</h3> <p>Occasionally at check-in, you can nab a good deal for a cash or frequent flyer mile upgrade to first class. It might be worth an extra couple of hundred dollars if you're getting an upgrade to a first class ticket which sells for thousands more.</p> <h2>At the Gate</h2> <p>No luck yet? That's okay. Here's how to play your cards right at the gate&hellip;</p> <h3>Arrive at the Gate Early</h3> <p>After checking passengers in at the front desk, airline staff usually move to the gate to print out rosters and do other administrative things. If you're at the gate early, you might catch them in this lull before the next rush for boarding begins.</p> <p>If you're sitting there looking nice and were cordial at check-in, the gate attendant might shuffle a few seats around and bump you up to first class. A sob story/special occasion can help if you manage to get chatting with them and ask them for an upgrade. This is how I got my first-ever free upgrade to first class. I'd miscalculated the time after 20-something hours of travel and was sitting at the gate with hours to spare and got chatting with the gate attendant about my mammoth journey, at which point she decided to make the next leg of it much more comfortable for me. It happened again in Australia after a ridiculous amount of continuous travel. I asked (some might say begged) the gate attendant for some reprieve on my final flight, and she pitied me with an upgrade to first class.</p> <h3>Volunteer to Be Bumped</h3> <p>Some airlines overbook their flights, such that at the gate they ask for volunteers to be bumped off their pending flight. In exchange for your benevolence, you'll be remunerated with things like vouchers for food, accommodation, future flights (in addition to your missed flight being rebooked for you), straight cash, and sometimes, an upgrade to first class.</p> <p>If you're eager to take advantage of this deal and don't mind missing your flight, don't wait to be asked to bump; volunteer in advance by (showing up early, and letting the gate attendant know that you're available if they're overbooked.</p> <h2>By the Way</h2> <p>Don't forget about business class. With most airlines and routes, there is very little &mdash; if any &mdash; difference between business class and first class. Although in some cases first class flights offer an additional level of opulence, few people could turn their noses up at a business class upgrade or ticket. It's not &quot;first class,&quot; but trust me &mdash; it's better than coach.</p> <p><em>Do you fly first class &mdash; for cheap? What's your secret? Please share in comments.</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/nora-dunn">Nora Dunn</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-cheapest-ways-to-fly-first-class">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-5"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-smart-travel-hacks-only-frequent-flyers-know">5 Smart Travel Hacks Only Frequent Flyers Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-hidden-comforts-to-consider-when-choosing-an-airline">5 Hidden Comforts to Consider When Choosing an Airline</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/wise-bread-reloaded-the-surprisingly-easy-way-to-defend-your-knees-and-other-air-travel-tips">Wise Bread Reloaded: The Surprisingly Easy Way to Defend Your Knees and Other Air Travel Tips</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-fool-proof-ways-to-stay-within-your-travel-budget">7 Fool-Proof Ways to Stay Within Your Travel Budget</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/heres-how-the-major-airlines-determine-when-and-how-you-board">Here&#039;s How the Major Airlines Determine When and How You Board</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Travel air travel airline business class first class seat upgrade Thu, 11 Sep 2014 15:00:06 +0000 Nora Dunn 1207169 at http://www.wisebread.com Wise Bread Reloaded: The Surprisingly Easy Way to Defend Your Knees and Other Air Travel Tips http://www.wisebread.com/wise-bread-reloaded-the-surprisingly-easy-way-to-defend-your-knees-and-other-air-travel-tips <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/wise-bread-reloaded-the-surprisingly-easy-way-to-defend-your-knees-and-other-air-travel-tips" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/angry-airplane-passengers-dv2074031-small.jpg" alt="angry airplane passengers" title="angry airplane passengers" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>By now you've heard of the contretemps aboard an airliner last weekend during which one passenger prevented the seat in front of him from reclining through use of a device called the Knee Defender. Frustration ensued until the passenger seated ahead doused the passenger seated behind and the Captain diverted to another airport and <em>both passengers</em> were escorted off the plane. Ever since, the Internet has been all worked up about whether or not the Right to Recline is an actual right (<a href="https://today.yougov.com/news/2014/08/29/poll-results-flying/">a recent poll suggests a majority of Americans think it's a right</a>).</p> <p>Economy air travel is not as comfortable as it could be these days. And certainly episodes like last week's are probably best avoided with the simplest knee defense of all &mdash; common courtesy. Crowded travel is uncomfortable for everybody. A little courtesy takes the edge off and brightens everyone's day.</p> <p>With courtesy the floor, what else can one do to make economy air travel more pleasant? Wise Bread's writers have had plenty of suggestions over the years. Here are a few.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-get-through-the-airport-faster?ref=classicwb">How to Get Through the Airport Faster</a> &mdash; Pro traveler Nora Dunn shares the tips and tricks she's learned about navigating that terrifying space between ground transportation and the plane &mdash; the airport.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-things-you-must-do-if-youre-traveling-with-kids?ref=classicwb">9 Things You Must When Travelling With Kids</a> &mdash; Air travel is tough, but adding kids maxes out the difficulty setting. Elizabeth Lang walks you through it.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-things-to-keep-you-sane-on-a-plane?ref=classicwb">6 Things to Keep You Sane on the Plane</a> &mdash; Kentin Waits shares what he stows in his carry-on to make a long trip bearable, and maybe even enjoyable.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-airline-fees-that-are-actually-worth-paying?ref=classicwb">8 Airline Fees That Are Actually Worth Paying</a> &mdash; Penny wise, pound foolish applies to air travel too, and Deia B explains which airline upgrades are worth the cost.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/alternatives-to-flying-other-ways-to-get-from-here-to-there?ref=classicwb">Alternatives to Air Travel: Other Ways to Get From Here to There</a> &mdash; And if none of that makes air travel an attractive option, Nora Dunn suggests other ways of going. They may not be as fast, but they're bound to be more comfortable.</p> <p>Whether you're Team Recline or Team Knee, the next time you're on a crowded plane, remember this: your fellow passengers didn't decide to cram an extra row of seats on the plane &mdash; the airline did. Keep your cool, stay courteous, and aim your complaints high.</p> <p><em>How do you stay comfortable when flying? Please share in comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/lars-peterson">Lars Peterson</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/wise-bread-reloaded-the-surprisingly-easy-way-to-defend-your-knees-and-other-air-travel-tips">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-9"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-hidden-comforts-to-consider-when-choosing-an-airline">5 Hidden Comforts to Consider When Choosing an Airline</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-get-free-or-almost-free-airline-tickets">10 Ways to Get Free (or Almost Free) Airline Tickets</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-smart-travel-hacks-only-frequent-flyers-know">5 Smart Travel Hacks Only Frequent Flyers Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-8-worst-and-best-airport-buys">The 8 Worst and Best Airport Buys</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/23-airport-hacks-to-remember-before-your-next-flight">23 Airport Hacks to Remember Before Your Next Flight</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Travel air travel airline flying reclining travel Sat, 30 Aug 2014 11:00:05 +0000 Lars Peterson 1199892 at http://www.wisebread.com 15 Airport Hacks From Professional Travelers http://www.wisebread.com/15-airport-hacks-from-professional-travelers <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/15-airport-hacks-from-professional-travelers" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/businessman-sleeping-airport-78770981-small.jpg" alt="businessman sleeping airport" title="businessman sleeping airport" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Do you want to save money on drinks and baggage fees, skip airport lineups, get good prices on flights, keep the kids amused, and stay safe when arriving in airports at unwieldy hours? Then read on, because I've rounded up 10 professional travelers and invited them to share their <em>best</em> airport hacks. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-get-through-the-airport-faster?ref=seealso">How to Get Through the Airport Faster</a>).</p> <h2>1. Apply for Global Entry</h2> <p>U.S. Citizens can clear customs quickly with <a href="http://www.cbp.gov/global-entry/about">Global Entry</a>. (Citizens of Canada, Mexico, New Zealand, the Netherlands, and other countries have <a href="http://www.cbp.gov/global-entry/other-programs">similar pre-screening programs</a> that work in tandem with Global Entry). Application involves a rigorous background check and interview, but once you're a member you can clear customs in a jiffy, and also take advantage of special security lines and procedures.</p> <p>Lisa Ellen Niver of <a href="http://www.wesaidgotravel.com/">We Said Go Travel</a> is a global citizen who has traveled to over 100 countries on six continents. After traveling with her parents and experiencing the benefits of Global Entry, she lodged her own application. &quot;After you apply and have your interview, you no longer have to stand in long security lines. You are whisked ahead with no need to remove shoes or take computers out of cases. It makes travel seem almost civilized again!&quot;</p> <h2>2. Bring Your Own Liquor</h2> <p>Are you taking a domestic flight (and/or flying a budget airline) and want to have a drink but don't want to pay the airline's prices for liquor? Carry on a mini bottle of your favorite libation and mix it with the free soft drink, says Tamara Elliott, who offers savvy practical travel advice on <a href="http://www.globeguide.ca/">Globe Guide</a>. &quot;This works well since mix (Coke, juice, etc) is already included on-board &mdash; plus, the TSA doesn't have restrictions about what liquids you can bring, just how big they are.&quot;</p> <h2>3. Hitchhike Into the First Class Lounge</h2> <p>Turner Wright of <a href="http://www.onceatraveler.com/">Once A Traveler</a>, who has lived in Japan, South Korea, Peru, Thailand, and New Zealand, has an unconventional method for accessing first class lounges:</p> <p style="margin-left: 40px;">Some first class lounges allow you to bring in a guest for free, so as long as you're not too smelly and relatively personable, just hang out at the entrance and ask someone if he or she wouldn't mind signing you in (including a sob story about how you've been cooped up for 30 hours and/or missing your family wouldn't hurt).</p> <h2>4. Pay for the First Class Lounge</h2> <p>If schmoozing into the first class lounge doesn't work (or isn't your style), you can often buy a pass. It usually costs $30-$50 and gives you access to all the lounge amenities such as comfortable seating, free food and drinks (including alcohol), Internet, and sometimes even showers and quiet rooms for sleeping. If you have hours to kill before your flight or between flights, this can be money well spent.</p> <h2>5. Wear Your Extra Luggage</h2> <p>Benny Lewis as been on the road for over 11 years and was named National Geographic's Traveler of the Year in 2013. He travels with everything he owns (including books!), and flies budget airlines with over 80 pounds of gear without paying for it. His secret? He <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-most-creative-ways-to-avoid-airline-fees-like-wearable-suitcases">wears his luggage</a> with the unfashionable but arguably practical <a href="http://www.jaktogo.com/">Jaktogo</a>. &quot;It's not a great fashion statement, and uncomfortable to wear while you do it, but that's only necessary while you [check in and] board the plane (since that's the only time your number of bags are truly checked). The rest of the time, you can walk around the terminal and even go through security with it in its extra bag folded up mode.&quot; (Benny himself a polyglot who teaches people to become <a href="http://www.fluentin3months.com/">Fluent in 3 Months</a> with a variety of tools including a free crash course.)</p> <h2>6. Fly Red-Eye</h2> <p>Matt Stabile, founder and Editor-in-Chief of <a href="http://www.theexpeditioner.com/">TheExpeditioner.com</a> and <a href="http://www.expeditionersafaris.com/">ExpeditionerSafaris.com</a> says the best way to avoid the hassle of getting through airports is to choose red-eye (overnight) flights, especially if it's a long flight. &quot;If you book a flight that leaves past, say, 10:00pm, you'll avoid rush hour traffic on the way to the airport, lines at check-in are going to be minimal, security will take a fraction of what it takes earlier in the day, and once you settle in for the flight, you can simply go to sleep and wake up at your destination.&quot;</p> <h2>7. Get Help Booking Flights</h2> <p>If flying red-eye doesn't appeal, Benny Lewis also recommends using <a href="http://www.flightfox.com/">Flight Fox</a> to book flights; he says they can often find a convenient travel time for the same cost as a red-eye flight.</p> <h2>8. Ask for Assistance</h2> <p>Airports usually involve lots of walking and standing in line, which not everybody can manage. If you or somebody you're traveling with has trouble getting around (due to age or injury), don't let pride get in the way; ask for assistance.</p> <p>Jeanne Dee of <a href="http://www.soultravelers3.com/">SoulTravelers3</a> discovered this life-saver while suffering serious medical challenges and traveling with her family. &quot;Airlines can help you with wheelchair assistance, making the whole process doable for someone with health challenges, and they escort the whole family through security and customs and such.&quot; Jeanne and her multi-award-winning digital nomadic family of three have been on the road non-stop for almost nine years, visiting 47 countries on five continents for $23/day per person.</p> <p>Although wheelchair assistance shouldn't be taken advantage of, it's a huge time-saver if you have a tight connection and are unable to move quickly. I discovered this myself after suffering a near-fatal accident and traveling to the States for medical attention. I would never have made the connection in my condition without being skirted through the airport's &quot;secret passages&quot; and ushered through special lineups. (Bonus: Your travel companions are escorted through with you!)</p> <h2>9. Eat at the Airport</h2> <p>Tiffany and Chris Soukup of <a href="http://www.vagabondway.net/">VagabondWay.net</a> have been traveling and working around the world for the last 10 years. They've learned through experience that eating a solid meal at the airport can actually be cost-effective, and arriving well-fed helps battle <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-naturally-reset-your-sleep-cycle-overnight">jet lag</a> and even helps you make better (money-saving) decisions. Tiffany uses some hacks to make it cost-effective and fun. &quot;I can't say the airport is my favorite place to eat, but I look forward to walking around to find where I'll dine. [Also], look ahead to know what restaurants are at the airport and see if you can get coupons.&quot;</p> <h2>10. Family Travel Hack: Entertain the Kids Without Gadgets</h2> <p>Rachel and Greg Denning of <a href="http://www.discovershareinspire.com/">DiscoverShareInspire.com</a> have been traveling since 2007 with their five (now six) children. They know better than any parents how hard it is to keep kids entertained during long hours of waiting in airports, and they say using less technology (tablets, smartphones, etc) creates better travelers.</p> <p style="margin-left: 40px;">The mind-numbing, easy entertainment of many [tablet/smartphone] games can lead to boredom, because children get accustomed to being passively entertained, instead of actively entertaining themselves. Reading books, talking, singing, playing games (cards, iSpy, etc.) can hold their attention and lead to bonding and personal interaction, which makes travel more enjoyable for parents and children alike.</p> <p>She adds, however, that if your kids are already addicted to technology, going cold turkey in an airport isn't wise; best to start &quot;weaning&quot; them several weeks before traveling. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-digital-detox-how-and-why-to-do-it?ref=seealso">The Digital Detox &ndash; How and Why to Do It</a>).</p> <h2>11. Jump the Line (and Other Perks) With Frequent Flyer Status</h2> <p>&quot;The Guy&quot; dubs his website <a href="http://www.flightsandfrustration.com/">Flights and Frustration</a> for good reason; he has been traveling internationally with his work nearly every month for over 14 years. He has found a way to use business class and priority lineups even if he's flying economy. It's all about achieving elite status with frequent flyer miles. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/everything-you-need-to-know-about-frequent-flyer-miles?ref=seealso">Everything You Need to Know About Frequent Flyer Miles</a>).</p> <p>&quot;A prime example is my KLM Flying Blue card. With higher status I can use my economy ticket and still go to the business class check-in queue.&quot; For those with miles but no status, try asking for a points-upgrade. &quot;Inquire at check-in (or even before you go to the airport) to see if you can redeem points to upgrade your ticket to business class. Then it is queue jumping and luxury travel all the way.&quot;</p> <p>Having status with one airline can give you access to perks on all airlines in the alliance. &quot;I collect frequent flyer points on my Singapore Kris Flyer card for Star Alliance flights. I held a Gold Status with this Kris Flyer card whilst checking in for a domestic flight in the US with United. Due to my frequent flyer status with Star Alliance, they waived the baggage fee.&quot;</p> <h2>12. Go Through Priority Lines Anyway</h2> <p>Turner Wright (of <a href="http://www.onceatraveler.com/">Once A Traveler</a>) doesn't even bother flashing a frequent flyer mile status card to jump the line. &quot;Depending on the rush, I find it pretty ridiculous to cue up in one security line when there's an empty one for first class or priority passengers. Usually I just walk up and ask if I can go through, assuming they don't just wave me in. The same goes for lines at immigration and customs.&quot;</p> <h2>13. Flash Your Travel Rewards Credit Card</h2> <p>Even if you don't have super-elite frequent flyer mile status, you can flash a travel rewards credit card to gain lounge access. Stephanie Zito has been to over 115 countries living and working on the road for the last 20+ years. In addition to her humanitarian work and <a href="http://www.wanderingforgood.com/">Wandering For Good</a>, she's also the managing editor of the <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-travel-hacking-cartel-fly-around-the-world-for-almost-free">Travel Hacking Cartel</a> and a travel-hacker extraordinaire.</p> <p style="margin-left: 40px;">If you live and work on the road and take advantage of lounges for showers, meals, Wi-Fi, and free drinks, it's worth carrying a card that&nbsp;gets you Priority Pass which allows you to access more than 600 lounges around the world. If you just need a pass or two, many co-branded airline credit cards offer one or two lounge passes a year as a sign-up bonus.</p> <h2>14. Catch a Rest in the Chapel (and a Shower Nearby)</h2> <p>If you've got a long layover or delayed flight and need some peace and quiet, look for the airport chapel. It can be a great place to catch a catnap, meditate, or simply enjoy a cell-phone free environment. Stephanie Zito also says it might lead you to a shower in certain parts of the world: &quot;If you're traveling through the middle east, there is almost always a public shower room somewhere in the airport &mdash; you just have to find it. The trick is to locate the prayer area. The showers will always be nearby.&quot;</p> <h2>15. Sleep in the Airport</h2> <p>Wade Shepard has been traveling since 1999 as founding editor of <a href="http://www.vagabondjourney.com/">Vagabond Journey</a>, and he has a formula for sleeping in airports. &quot;I usually sleep in the airport when I have an early morning flight leaving between 3 a.m. and 9 a.m. or when I land between 11 p.m. and 5 a.m. It's free, relatively secure, and cuts out the hassle of taking [costly] late night transportation and checking in/out of a hotel at an hour when humans are better off tucked away in bed.&quot; He even argues that it's safer to sleep in the airport than to navigate a foreign city late at night, where you might be more of a target.</p> <p>He consults <a href="http://www.sleepinginairports.net/">SleepingInAirports.net</a> to find the best places to sleep, and likes to be out of the way but still around other people (who are preferably sleeping) so there is security in numbers. As for his luggage, he secures it: &quot;I either lock my bag to the chair I'm sleeping in or I tie it my wrist &mdash; so if someone was to try to snatch it I'd wake up.&quot;</p> <p>Wade even does this with his wife and child in tow. &quot;Having three people to fend for makes the money saved even greater! I also found it works better just to let my daughter stay up late, go crazy in the airport, then crash on the plane rather than waking her up in the middle of the night and moving her out [of a hotel].&quot;</p> <p>For more from frequent travelers, check out these 25 other fantastic travel tips and secrets: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-secrets-from-the-worlds-most-frugal-frequent-travelers">25 Secrets From the World's Most Frugal Frequent Travelers</a>.</p> <p><em>Do you have any reliable airport hacks? Please share in comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/nora-dunn">Nora Dunn</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-airport-hacks-from-professional-travelers">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-6"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-smart-travel-hacks-only-frequent-flyers-know">5 Smart Travel Hacks Only Frequent Flyers Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-airline-travel-sucks-and-what-you-can-do-to-make-it-better">5 Ways Airline Travel Sucks — and What You Can Do to Make It Better</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/sleeping-in-airports-for-the-stranded-and-frugal-minded">Sleeping In Airports For The Stranded And Frugal Minded</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-get-through-the-airport-faster">How to Get Through the Airport Faster</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/clipped-wings-can-consumers-fix-air-travel">Clipped Wings: Can Consumers Fix Air Travel?</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Travel air travel airport secrets airports credit cards frugal travel travel secrets Mon, 18 Aug 2014 15:06:06 +0000 Nora Dunn 1185372 at http://www.wisebread.com The Secret Flight Search Site Savvy Travelers Use http://www.wisebread.com/the-secret-flight-search-site-savvy-travelers-use <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-secret-flight-search-site-savvy-travelers-use" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/laptop-481775233.jpg" alt="flight search" title="flight searc" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="166" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>With so many travel booking websites out there, it can be tough to decide which one to use. But did you know that many of these websites are powered by the same search engine?</p> <p><a href="http://matrix.itasoftware.com/search.htm">ITA Matrix</a> is the powerful software behind such household names as Kayak and Orbitz. It's a great place to start when you're looking for airfares. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/top-5-travel-reward-credit-cards">Best Travel Rewards Credit Cards</a>)</p> <h2>Why Have I Never Heard of It?</h2> <p>Unlike other flight search websites, ITA Matrix does not book flights for you. Other websites earn money through bookings, while ITA earns money through selling its software to the travel industry. This is why consumers are not likely to see their ads or find them by googling &quot;book cheap flights.&quot; What ITA Matrix does is search for flights so you can book them elsewhere. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-get-free-or-almost-free-airline-tickets?ref=seealso">10 Ways to Get Dirt Cheap Airline Tickets</a>)</p> <h2>Why Use It?</h2> <p>Using ITA Matrix does involve an extra step, but it's worth the extra time because it's the most flexible flight search engine out there. It can take into account many different factors of your trip to help you find the perfect airfare. If you have a flexible itinerary or if you're using <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/top-5-travel-reward-credit-cards">air miles</a>, ITA Matrix can actually save you time by doing in one search what other websites can only do in multiple searches. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/negotiate-all-your-travel-the-ultimate-guide?ref=seealso">Negotiating All Your Travel</a>)</p> <h2>Searching for Airfares on ITA Matrix</h2> <p>At first glance, the search form looks like any other flight site's. You first choose between &quot;round trip,&quot; &quot;one-way,&quot; and &quot;multi-city.&quot; Then, you enter your city, the destination, travel dates, number of passengers, and cabin class. The magic lies in its other search options.</p> <h3>Flexible Dates</h3> <p>If you don't have specific travel dates in mind, you can take advantage of price fluctuations to get cheaper airfares. When you do a search on ITA Matrix, choose the &quot;See calendar of lowest fares&quot; option and enter the earliest date you can fly out. The website will show you a calendar view of the cheapest dates over the next month.</p> <h3>Flexible Trip Duration</h3> <p>If you can't decide how long to stay in your destination, ITA Matrix can help by showing you how much your airfare would cost depending on the length of your stay.</p> <p>For example, if you enter &quot;5-7&quot; in the &quot;length of stay&quot; field on the search page, you'll again see a calendar view of the airfares over the next month. But this time, when you hover over a date, ITA Matrix will show you how much the airfare would cost if you were to fly out on that date and stay for each trip length option &mdash; in this example, five, six and seven nights. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/20-secrets-of-last-minute-travel?ref=seealso">20 Secrets of Last-Minute Travel</a>)</p> <h3>Flexible Airports</h3> <p>Another way you can save big on airfares is by choosing to fly out of less-busy airports. With other flight search websites, you may have to search each airport one by one.</p> <p>ITA Matrix allows you to search multiple airports at once. You can enter each airport by name, but where ITA Matrix really shines is when you click the &quot;Nearby&quot; link and let the software search all airports up to 2,000 miles.</p> <p>This is especially useful when you have several destination options and can't decide which one to choose. If you enter all your possible destinations, ITA Matrix will show you whether it's cheaper to go to Fiji or Australia.</p> <p>This feature is also great for when you want to explore an entire region and have no preference on where you start or end your trip. For example, if you want to book airfares for a trip to Europe, you may search the entire region to see the cheapest entry and exit points. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-get-the-lowest-price-on-airfare-even-after-you-buy?ref=seealso">Get the Lowest Rates on Airfare Even After You Buy</a>)</p> <h3>Using Air Miles</h3> <p>If you'll be using air miles to pay for the flight, ITA Matrix is undoubtedly the best place to find your airfare. The software has all sorts of advanced search functions that allow you to make full use of your air miles.</p> <p>If you click &quot;Advanced routing codes&quot; on the search page, you can search by airline. You can also have ITA Matrix calculate the price per mile of your flight.</p> <h2>Choosing Your Flights</h2> <p>After you choose a date from the calendar view, ITA Matrix will show you all your flight options, arranged by price.</p> <p>You can narrow down your search at this point by playing around with the column headings. For example, if you click the &quot;from/to&quot; heading, you can choose to see only flights leaving from the JFK airport.</p> <p>Another neat feature is the &quot;Time bars&quot; view, which shows each flight as a color-coded bar from departure to arrival.</p> <p>Once you've made a decision, you can choose an airfare by clicking on the price button. ITA Matrix will show you all the flight details you need to make a booking.</p> <h2>Booking the Flight</h2> <p>Armed with the flight details, you can go to the airline website and book there directly. For example, if you choose a flight on United Airlines, just go to the United Airlines website and find the flight there.</p> <p>Alternatively, you can make a booking through a travel agent or another website. Check their prices as well because no one website &mdash; not even ITA Matrix &mdash; will always show the lowest fares every time.</p> <p><em>Have you used ITA Matrix? Where'd you go? How much did you save?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/deia-b">Deia B</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-secret-flight-search-site-savvy-travelers-use">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-10"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-book-an-amazing-cheap-vacation-package">How to Book an Amazing Cheap Vacation Package</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-get-free-or-almost-free-airline-tickets">10 Ways to Get Free (or Almost Free) Airline Tickets</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-smart-travel-hacks-only-frequent-flyers-know">5 Smart Travel Hacks Only Frequent Flyers Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-8-worst-and-best-airport-buys">The 8 Worst and Best Airport Buys</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/wise-bread-reloaded-the-surprisingly-easy-way-to-defend-your-knees-and-other-air-travel-tips">Wise Bread Reloaded: The Surprisingly Easy Way to Defend Your Knees and Other Air Travel Tips</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Travel air travel cheap vacations flight search flights flying Sun, 06 Apr 2014 02:48:23 +0000 Deia B 1134184 at http://www.wisebread.com