One more post with tips about packing up for the end of summer – what to get, what not to put in your checked baggage and how to get through the gates quickly.
Let’s start with the weirdest advice I’ve seen over the internet for people that want to take a lot of stuff with them and don’t want to overpay for excess baggage. So here we go – you can always send some things via mail to your place of destination – and then send them back home. It’s way cheaper than taking a lot of things with you to a plane.
One particularly cool advice (if you don’t want to spend money for a suitcase) is to go to a thrift store. It’s a perfect spot to grab a t-shirt for 3$ – and additionally, have some useful souvenir :) . Just remember, you’ll still have to pack it on your way back : )
If you’re travelling with someone, it’s a neat idea to pack at least one set of clothes in your friends’ suitcase – this way if your baggage goes missing or you’ll have to wait for it, you won’t have to buy new clothes to get by.
Take a picture of your baggage (and it’s content) – in a case of it missing you’ll have to fill out long forms about how it looked like. If you don’t speak in given country’s native language it’s even harder. Now, if you’ll have a picture you can just show it to proper authorities and it will save you a lot of time and frustration (i also tend to list all the things I take with me – makes it easier to pack on my way back and will definitely come helpful to describe what did I have in case of missing baggage).
WHAT NOT TO PACK IN REGISTERED BAGGAGE
In my previous post, I already wrote about valuables. One more time – never ever pack expensive stuff in your registered baggage. All these things, if you have to take them, should be in your carry-on baggage. US Airlines won’t pay more than 3.300$ per passenger for a bag lost on domestic flights and it’s highly unlikely that you’ll get a refund that will fully cover the value of missing things.
Also, never pack your ID, passport, boarding pass and other important docs in your registered baggage. You should always carry all these important things with you. And even better – copy all of them and try to use those if possible.
Same goes for money and credit cards. You’ll have a problem if your baggage goes missing and more than that – it can just get stolen in the airport. There have been reports of TSA workers stealing electronics, money and other valuables from passengers’ bags. Though, as expected, such occurrences are rare.
Laptop and electronics – they’re both electronics and valuables exposed to thieving.
Meds – they should always be in your carry-on baggage.
Don’t pack all your clothes in registered baggage (it might get damaged or missing), get something in your cabin baggage as well, just in case. Same goes for your everyday stuff like toothbrush or makeup.
It’s better not to risk packing sensitive things (that can break or shatter). Our suitcases, unfortunately, tend to “fly” at the airport – there’s not a lot time to put everything on a plane so baggage isn’t treated with special care.
For people that want to carry food and drinks – it’s worth noting that bottles can explode and mess up all your things. And if your flight gets delayed, which might be long hours – the food might go bad. Better not to imagine the smell of your clothes after that happens. Additionally, you can’t bring food and drinks to some countries – so better check out if your place of destination allows this or you might get stopped at the border.
And lastly – lighters and all other inflammable things – they’re strictly forbidden on most of the airports. You should also always check if your airline allows them, and if so, where and how should they be packed. One advice – just don’t take them. You can always buy this stuff after arrival and not worry about strip-search and thorough baggage check.
HOW TO GET THROUGH THE GATES QUICKLY
Make an online check-in – if you don’t have to, don’t bring any registered baggage. If you need it, just make sure you don’t carry anything that’s forbidden and get to the airport early.
In case of carry-on baggage:
My golden rule is to have a perfect order in the bag.
Don’t take anything that might get questioned at the airport.
Keep your cosmetics in sealed bags.
Don’t take too many electronics (phone, toothbrush, power bank).
Keep everything in sealed, see-through bags.
I keep my cosmetics and electronics in a handbag so they don’t even have to open the baggage.
It all takes 5 seconds : )