Travel Tips and Tricks Part 1

Business TravelI do a fair bit of travel and I’ve learned some things I thought I’d share with you. Here’s a list of 8 tips. There are a whole bunch more but I didn’t want to go overboard, and in all honesty, I couldn’t think of any more at the moment. I should really make a complete list.

For starters:

  1. Every piece of luggage I travel with gets a bright red handle cover. If I have to check a piece of luggage I can easily spot it on the conveyor belt at baggage claim. Additionally if it’s lost for any reason it now stands out. I tell this to the agent and it makes it a lot easier to find.
  2. Use technology. I use my phone now to check in and as my boarding pass. Additionally I can check the weather, make Phone.com calls and keep track of all my reservations.
  3. Join every loyalty program and be loyal. My father-in-law taught me this. He joined every program he could and so have I. Over the years I’ve gotten 5 international airline tickets and some rental cars just from my miles alone. Whenever I get the opportunity I point my miles to American Airlines, my airline of choice.
  4. Get a credit card that gives you miles. I personally chose a credit card that gives me miles on most major airlines. Some cards give you points versus miles and typically those don’t give you the most bang for your buck in my calculations. Typically the cards that give miles 1:1 or better for every dollar spent have an annual fee, but that’s ok with me. It’s always worked out in my favor.
  5. Always carry food with you. I’m not suggesting you act like my mother and carry an entire chicken or a salami, but I always carry some snacks. Whether it’s a granola bar, a bag of nuts or some junk food, there’s always a few snacks in my bag. My mother was right, sometimes you get stuck on a runway, in the airport or you just get hungry on a long flight. Starving yourself isn’t good especially when traveling.
  6. If you’re flight is canceled or you’re going to miss your connection I suggest calling the airline on your cell phone versus standing in line with everyone else to face that poor unfortunate counter attendant that is getting an earful from upset passengers.
  7. On that note, be nice and smile. Even if you’re having a horrendous trip or are stressed to your breaking point, I suggest you be nice if you want to get anything from anybody. Want to rebook a canceled flight? Don’t scream at the unfortunate soul behind the counter; talk to them nicely and they’ll likely do their best to help you out.
  8. If you’re a frequent traveler, need a tax deduction or can get your company to splurge for you, a membership to an airline club can make your travel significantly better. Private bathrooms/showers, quiet secluded areas, free food and drink plus a whole list of other benefits make club membership one of a traveler’s best friends.

One friend of mine always flies with a scarf that he pulls up over his mouth and nose when he sleeps on planes. He claims he doesn’t get sick from flying because of this. Do you have any tips or tricks you can share with us? What do you know that others may not? Please share on Facebook or Twitter.