Recently, I've been traveling a lot. And I'm about to start traveling a lot more for my new job - soon I'll be on three international trips in just two months! And though I wouldn't consider myself a *jetsetter* just yet, I have picked up a few tips and gadgets that have made my travel experiences a little bit more bearable - or dare I say - enjoyable?
Everybody loves the destination, but nobody likes sitting in the airport bored or turning to mush in an uncomfortable airplane seat. I only hope that these tips will help you out as much as they've helped me!
- Get a power bank. Nowadays, most airports have updated the terminals to at least include charging stations, or even under-chair outlets. But every now and then, you'll find yourself in an outdated airport or terminal with only a few outlets available - and they're always occupied (usually by us pesky millennials who can't live without our phones)! I've been there too many times - I sit waiting for my flight to board browsing Instagram, texting my mom and boyfriend status updates, and even after putting my phone on airplane mode for the duration of my flight, all of a sudden my phone is about to die when I arrive at my destination. How am I going to call my Lyft? Am I going to have to take a cab? Have I been transported to the 70's? BOOM - solution: bring a power bank. Make sure it's charged and full before you head to the airport, and then you'll be set - no matter if you're actually transported back to the decade and peace and love, or if you just find yourself in an airport that feels like it. Amazon has a huge selection; check it out here.
- Use Netflix downloads! When Netflix announced downloading capabilities last year, it felt like the universe was providing me with everything I ever wanted - that I didn't even know I wanted. Since then, I've passed the time on countless flights watching Orange is the New Black, The Keepers, Okja, The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt and who knows what else. As long as you can remember to download them while you still have a WiFi connection, you can guarantee yourself hours and hours of entertainment. More information on how to download shows on your Netflix app can be found here.
- Opt for that really expensive neck pillow. For my birthday, my mom gave me one of those really expensive, super thick, memory foam neck pillows. You probably know them - they're like, 40 bucks (I know, a little ridiculous), BUT HEAR ME OUT. This thing is a game-changer. It rolls up real small. It's got a side pocket to store your headphones. It comes with ear plugs (!!). And it's thick enough that you don't wake up with a sore neck - never ever. Are you sold yet? Because you should be. Here's where to buy.
- Apply for TSA Pre-Check. For $85, you can breeze through airport security for the next five years. Keep your shoes and jacket on, your laptop in your bag, and skate through security in less than ten minutes. With pre-check, the "2 hours before departure" rule no longer applies. So sleep in! Stay for one more drink! Get started with the application here.
- Ask for orange juice. When I'm traveling - and often times short on sleep and slightly stressed - it's much easier for my body to succumb to whatever virus or bug is floating around the airplane cabin. I've made a habit of ordering orange juice when the flight attendants bring the beverage cart through the cabin just to get that extra kick of Vitamin C. It may be a placebo effect, but regardless - it always keeps the sore throat or stuffy nose at bay! And there's always the option to add vodka to that OJ if you're looking to get the party started.
The more you travel, the more you'll find quirks and issues that bug you. If you're really going to enjoy your travel - and not just the destination, but also the journey - it's worth spending a few extra bucks to enjoy yourself all the way from point A to point B! I hope these tricks will help you arrive a little happier.
Have any tricks or tips of your own? Share in the comments below!