Youre all set.
Thats airline talk for thank you and we appreciate your business. So sad.
But wait, really, are YOU all set? Whether youre flying in first class or coach, main cabin aka second class or the cramped section, dont you deserve a verbal THANKS?
As a seasoned world traveler (1,000 flights), here are some of my business travel strategies that you can use to be more productive and gain a positive perspective on one of the worlds most advanced, yet frustrating, transportation systems.
PRE-FLIGHT INFORMATION AND INSTRUCTIONS.
(fasten your seatbelt and your luggage tags)
Before you even leave your house
People will tell you to travel light.
Heres what I dont do: travel light.
Travel with what you want, not with what your gonna miss once you arrive. For long flights, bring your own pillow. Think comfort and ease. Make a small medical kit to keep in your bag that contains all the medicine you could possibly need, just in case. You dont want to have to find a drug store while away, and if you need something, you can take it right away.
ARRIVING AT THE AIRPORT.
PRO TIP: Two words to avoid at all costs: Bag check! Whatever you have in your bag, take it out when you go through security. Chords. Jewelry. Coins. And especially spare lithium batteries, whatever they are. Dont give TSA a reason to make you go through a humiliating and time-wasting extra screening. Five seconds of prevention prevents ten minutes of intervention, AKA people messing with your stuff.
Here are a few more of the golden rules of travel:
- Delays are inevitable and completely out of your control. You cant control them, so theres no point in getting upset about them. Lines to check in are long, security lines are long and flights get delayed. Dont let these obstacles affect your attitude. Focus on what you can control — how to maximize your time while you’re on a delay.
- Arrive on time, but be prepared to wait. Delays can be (kind of) fun because all of a sudden you have new found time to get stuff done that you may otherwise wouldnt have.
- Walk or Work. If you dont have work to do, or a book to read for fun, get your coffee in, and your fitbit steps on.
- Airline employees are angry or matter-of-fact or both. No one will be friendly or helpful if you need them. You know the old expression, You can get more with a teaspoon of honey than a gallon of vinegar? At the airport, you can walk in with a 55-gallon drum of honey and it wouldnt matter, and thats just how it is. You must accept their attitude, and offer your positivity no matter what. Otherwise, you hear the other word you never want to hear: Security!
The first key is arriving early for your flight – but being prepared for a delay. Having a list and knowing what you need to and can accomplish if the plane is late. Lateness and delay is much more likely on weather days and in afternoon and evening flights.
And, the second key is leaving enough time between your flight and your business meeting (your sole purpose of getting on a plane in the first place) so that you’re not rushed or late for the meeting.
Seems like common sense, doesnt it? If I had a dollar for every time I heard someone say, If this plane is any later, Ill miss my meeting, Id be raking in the dough.
FLIGHT NOTE: Have a backup flight. Don’t take the last flight out or be prepared to fly home the next morning.
GALAXY NOTE: If you own a Galaxy Note 7 you were already screwed, but now you’re not allowed to fly with it or pack it, let alone walk about the country. Get an iPhone.
DURING THE FLIGHT.
When youre up in the air be nice to the flight attendants. Most people aren’t (surprised?). Look them in the eye and say hello. They’re there to serve you and protect you, so its in your best interest to be nice.
- Close the vent. Yes, close the air vent, even if you’re hot. Otherwise, the recycled plane air with all the germs will blow right on you. GROSS.
- Sleep. Its okay to take a snooze in the air. Just dont fall asleep on the guy next to you. Strangers dont like that very much.
- Drink. Hydrate. Many people forget to drink water. Challenge yourself to drink at least 1 cup for every hour you’re up in the air.
- Prep for your meetings. Get ready to kick ass. Educate yourself by listening to podcasts or reading a book or article. Use your fly time wisely.
- Be Merry. Not that kind of merry. Be merry because you are investing your time into a productive, fulfilling commute.
- BYOF. Bring your own food and, whatever you do, do not eat food if it falls on the tray table. I once saw someone change their baby on that thing!
A final tipLeave the barf bag alone. 74% have already been used as a gum depository.
Thank you for flying (and other insincerities)
The key to travel is maintaining your positive mentality, your attitude, your preparation, and your ability to turn travel disasters into laughable, productive moments, no matter what. Remember to thank the pilot for a safe flight.
Buh-bye! insincerity is nauseating thank goodness the plane is on the ground.
And now, youre all set!