This year my travel schedule has really ramped up. I love getting to meet people all over the country and world, and telling them about what is going on with Museum of the Bible. As I have taken on more frequent flyer miles, I have found that it’s helpful to have a good pre-travel routine. Before I get on my flight, here is my must-do routine:
- Think ahead
I like to be well-prepared for a trip. But I hate packing. I always feel like I’m forgetting something. I usually remember all of the important things, but I’m still prone to forget the obvious things every once in a while! Just last week I forgot to bring any makeup on a trip to NYC! Yikes!
In planning for the airport, I like to make sure I know what’s in my carry-on. Here are some questions I always ask myself:
- Is my carry-on easy for me to manage? I like to bring a carry-on with wheels so that my shoulder doesn’t get tired from carrying the bag around.
- Can I pack everything into one carry-on suitcase so that all I need is my boarding pass and I am ready to go? If not, is there anything I can eliminate for the trip?
- Are there easy accessible pockets in my travel bag for my cell phones, photo ID, and boarding pass? I like a bag with external zippered pockets to hold these essentials.
- Are my liquids in my checked bag or in a quart-sized bag that is easy to get to in my carry-on at security?
- Are my shoes easy to take off/put on at the security station?
- Do I have an extra layer—sweater, jacket, or hoodie—for when (not if, but when!) I get cold on the flight? I almost always wear this sweater when I travel.
These questions are helpful as I am packing and figuring out what to wear before heading to the airport.
- Prepare for Check-in & Security
I like to have my record locator at hand for a swift check-in, and I often have to check a bag. Helpful tip: Try to lock the bag with a TSA approved lock. I’ve learned this the hard way through a bad experience of having jewelry stolen out of my bag. 🙁
Then it is time for security. With these easy steps, I’m ready to go!
- I have my shoes ready to come off, and my outer layers and liquids bag ready to go in a bin.
- My laptop is out of the bag and in its own bin.
- At the security belt, I put my shoes through first so that I can put them right away on the other side. No one likes to be barefoot in an airport, am I right? Then my purse, followed by my laptop so I can grab it and put it back in my carry-on, which goes through last.
- Get ready for the flight
I always like to have a water bottle handy when traveling. Being in airplanes can dehydrate you, so I recommend carrying a bottle of H2O. The first thing I do after going through security is to buy a water bottle! You won’t be sorry about this. If you don’t want to purchase one, bring an empty bottle through security, and fill it at a fountain on the other side. It’s that easy!
After all of this, I head to my gate, check for any last emails or text messages I might need to respond to, and wait to board! I always carry a book or something to read, too.
What are your travel tips? Anything I should consider adding or changing to my routine? I would love to hear from you, even if it’s a horror story of one of your bad travel experiences. 😉