Sometimes we learn the hard way when it comes to traveling. However, this doesn’t have to be the case if you do thorough research on all the variables that you are unfamiliar with. One of the most frustrating and unnerving experiences for newbie travelers comes in the form of flying and the hours that lead up to boarding a plane.
With that in mind, here are 5 fundamental tips to consider for inexperienced flyers.
1. Allow yourself enough time to get to the airport
Photo Credits (Flickr CC): Airport by emrank
This may sound a little trivial but if you live in a city with high volumes of traffic, make sure to allow yourself plenty of time to get to the airport. The last thing you want is to be stuck in traffic and miss your check-in time. Most airlines ask you to be at the airport 3 hours before the flight.
2. Never exceed the airline’s baggage allowance limits
Photo Credits (Flickr CC): Luggage by robef
For seasoned travelers this is something that’s a given during the preparation stages of traveling but for newbies, this may not seem overly important. Baggage allowances vary from airline to airline, so make sure you do sufficient research to ensure you don’t succumb to a charge that Business Travel Destinations says “can exceed the price of an airline seat.”
3. Make sure you have more than 6-months left on your passport
Photo Credits (Flickr CC): Passport by reway2007
It’s imperative that when traveling to a foreign country you have more than 6-months left on your passport before it expires. Some countries especially in Asia and Europe will not let you board a flight if you don’t have more than 6-months left until it expires. Check out this guide to passport expiration dates by the Guardian, here.
4. Always book accommodation before you leave
Photo Credits (Flickr CC): Hotel by kretyen
One of the most important things when traveling is to make sure that you have somewhere booked to stay at your respective destination before you board your flight. Turning up to a place that you are unfamiliar with, and not having a place to stay is both dangerous and can be extremely expensive.
If you are traveling during peak season you may struggle to find accommodation on short notice and the prices of the hotels in busy areas could become inflated.
5. Park your vehicle somewhere safe
Photo Credits (Flickr CC): Airport Parking by hyku
Firstly, independent parking services can be quite expensive especially if you are going away for an extended amount of time. Using airport parking usually means that they will offer their customers a varied option of different parking services better suited to your needs. At Gatwick, one of Europe’s busiest airports, Parking4Less states that they offer short stay and long stay parking options to help keep costs to a minimum.
Using parking services outside the confines of an airport is also very risky, with many pitfalls according to the BBC which reported on the perils of parking on private land. These independent parking services can be unsafe, with many of them lacking secure facilities. Most airport parking services have 24-hour security and are usually monitored by CCTV cameras.
This is a guest post written by Andy Parker.