Photo by Pixabay
Are you about to go on a plane for the first time and don’t know what to expect? Understandable. It can be intimidating, stressful, and even scary. This article is here to help! Having flown over five times, this is a list of things I wish I knew earlier.
#1 Picking Your Seat
The “best seat” depends on preference. So, take these things into consideration when choosing.
Aisle Seat: Pros– the most space, first to exit, access restroom easily. Cons– only one arm rest, no window view, have to consider aisle by-passers.
Window Seat: Pros– amazing view experience, “closed-off” space, can rest head on side. Cons– have to squeeze through when going to the restroom, colder, exit last.
Therefore, if you know you use the bathroom a lot, choose the aisle seat. If you have trouble sleeping easily, choose the window seat. And if you don’t mind other passengers, choose the middle seat.
#2 Eat Before Going to the Airport
Eating a good, filling meal before you go to the airport is very important. Food options can be limited and expensive. You might spend lots of time looking for food, and increase the risk of missing your flight.
#3 Pack Thick Socks & Sweatshirt
It’s a known fact that airplanes get cold. Bring at least two pairs of thick socks to wear throughout the flight. It’s just as important to bring a sweatshirt. Though the flight will likely provide blankets, they’re not that warm.
#4 Carry an Empty Plastic Water Bottle
Don’t buy expensive water from the airport. Instead, carry an empty one as you go through TSA, and then fill it up once it’s over. If it’s full before security, checkpoint officials will dump it out.
#5 Bring a Portable Charger
A portable charger is very important. Anytime I’m in the airport, all outlets are taken. It’s hard to find an empty one. Obviously, having a fully charged phone is important when you’re traveling. Thus, bring a portable charger so you don’t have to worry about waiting for an empty one. You can also buy a backpack that has a built-in USB.
#6 Dress VERY Comfortable
Photo by Kyle Karbowsk
If you’ve never flown before, you might think that you have to dress somewhat decent. That idea is far from the truth. Most people wear sweat sets, pullovers, and even pajamas. But, how you appear is not the concern. It’s how comfortable your clothing is. You’re going to be sitting for a long time with limited space, walking a lot, and sleeping. I suggest staying away from jeans, dresses, sandals/high heels. Jewelry can get lost easily (even worse in the airport). You’ll also have to remove any magnetic metal jewelry between security because of the metal detectors, which is a hassle in itself.
#7 Don’t Overload Your Entertainment Supply
Photo by Jason Toevs
You might think downloading tons of movies, songs, games or bringing journals/coloring books is smart. It’s not. Anytime I bring journals or games, I get too lazy to dig for it and end up watching movies the rest of the flight. Even if you get bored easily, you definitely need less than you think. These items takes up unnecessary space. If you really want to, two movies per five hours is more than enough. Most long flights will have a screen that provides movies, though. One game, one simple journal (notepads are easier and quicker) is a good amount.
#8 Sanitize, sanitize, sanitize
I’ll be real here, airports are disgusting. Do not underestimate the amount of germs on everything you touch. Try your best to stay as safe as possible. Bring wipes and hand sanitizer, wash your hands every time you get a chance, and wear a mask. You can also bring a mini disinfectant spray for your seat and pull out the tray. It depends how comfortable you are, but wearing gloves is always beneficial. Even after COVID starts to die down a bit, sanitary habits are important.
That’s it! If you’re nervous about flying, I hope this article helped. There’s really nothing to stress about. What happens, happens. I’ve had tons of airport mishaps and issues that made it seem like I would be stuck in the airport forever. But it was solved, and I lived! Best of luck, and happy flying!