Flying on an airplane for the first time can be a life-changing and nerve-racking experience. It can be exciting and stressful at the same time, especially when you are not aware of what to expect going through airport security. Here’s a handy guide with the necessary tips for first-time flyers that will help make your travel easier and more convenient. Keep these things in your mind and make your trip worry-free.
Tips for First-Time Flyers
1. Packing right – check luggage requirements
First-time traveling can be overwhelming, and you may want to pack everything. It is easy to overpack, but you should note that it can cost you significantly. For instance, if the carry-on bag is too bulky, you may have to pay an additional fee to get it checked. Similarly, if the bag size is larger than the required, you may have to pay additional charges. Check the airline’s website to note down the luggage requirements and weight restrictions. Follow the guidelines to avoid paying hefty bills and charges at the airport later.
2. Different types of baggage
Let us learn the difference between the different types of baggage you can carry:
Checked Baggage: It is certainly the type of baggage that is stored in the aircraft and the passenger can’t access it during the flight. You should check the weight and size restrictions to ensure that it fits the guidelines of the airlines.
Carry-on Baggage – It is stored in the cabin of the airport, and the weight is certainly less than that of the checked baggage.
Personal item – It may include items such as a handbag, laptop, or any other small bag. Likewise, carry-on baggage, it is also kept on-person during the flight. However, the size and weight limits are much less than that of carry-on baggage.
3. Reach at least two hours early
Catching a flight is not like booking a cab or taking a bus. The procedure for checking and security can be complex. You should ideally arrive at the airport at least two hours before the take-off time. For international travel, you must consider visiting at least three hours before the time. During peak travel times, it can take longer. Boarding time is generally printed on the ticket, and you must follow that.
4. Keep your ID handy
Airports have tightened their measures and are taking strict measures to strengthen the security checks. In the past, you could just walk up to the gate without an ID. However, it is necessary to carry an ID now and you must keep it handy. It will only waste your time and may increase the time through security if you don’t keep it handy. Don’t forget to carry your visa, passport, and other necessary travel documents.
5. Learn basic Airport procedures
Going through the airport security checking can be stressful for first-time flyers. It, therefore, makes sense to learn the airport procedures in advance to avoid feeling stressed. Here are certain things that you must keep in mind before flying:
- You will have to remove your shoes. So, wear footwear that is easy to remove.
- You will have to empty the content of your pocket.
- Remove hat, belt, jewelry, and wallets.
- You will have to walk through a metal detector or a body scanner.
- Remove laptops and liquids from your bag.
- Send your carry-on bag through an x-ray machine.
These are some of the basic tips for first-time flyers. However, you should make sure you check the guidelines of the airline before proceeding.
6. Pack essentials in your carry-on
Pack essential items such as medicines, contacts, glasses, and other necessary paperwork in your carry-on. Make sure to check the rules and regulations for packing items in the carry-on. For instance, you can’t carry the full-sized contact lens solution in your carry-on. However, you can carry a mini travel-sized bottle of 3.4-ounce. The rules may slightly differ for international travel. Therefore, you must keep all these aspects in mind while packing for your first trip.
7. Make your baggage easily identifiable
Before flying, you must check the weight of the baggage at home. Additionally, you must consider tying a ribbon or belt to make it more identifiable.
8. Dress comfortably
Dressing comfortably is one of the most significant tips for first-time flyers. Sitting in an airplane for long hours can be a nightmare. Therefore, you must consider wearing something comfortable in which you can move around easily. You can keep extra pair of clothes in your carry-on and change them once you land at the airport.
9. In-flight accessories and entertainment
You should bring along some in-flight accessories, such as a travel pillow, sleep mask, and earplugs to make your travel more convenient. Additionally, you must note that Wi-Fi is still not available on most airlines. Therefore, you must prepare and bring your own entertainment. Create a playlist or take a book along with it that you can read during the journey. You can also carry a device to watch your favorite show or movie.
10. Consider the climate of the destination where you’re headed
If you live in a colder environment, you must be wearing jackets and sweaters. However, if you are traveling in a hot and humid environment, you must dress appropriately. Wear removable layers and outerwear to make sure you feel comfortable while you land at the airport.
11. Stay hydrated
High altitude may cause dizziness and headaches. Therefore, you must stay hydrated and drink lots of water. If you have fear of heights or are nervous about flying, you must consider consulting your medical healthcare provider.
12. Exchange currency beforehand or online
The exchange currency companies at the airport often give terrible exchange rates. Therefore, it is best to avail of the currency beforehand or online. You can also pre-order online for a better exchange rate.
13. Have a backup plan ready
No matter how much we try, it is best to be prepared for the worst-case scenario. “Think about what you would do if you miss your flight?” There may also be an instance where you miss your connecting flight or there is an extreme delay. You can generally rebook the connecting flight without any additional charge. Reach out to the customer service desk and see how they can help you. Don’t let it ruin your travel plans.
These are some of the critical tips for first-time flyers that may help make your travel more convenient and enjoyable. Do not panic over the safety checks and security measures. Follow all the guidelines and be ready for your first-time travel.