Travel Tips from a Flight Attendant
Travel Tips from a Flight Attendant
*In another post I wrote about pre-trip and inflight advice; if you need help packing and want insider tips about the aircraft, click here.
*This post focuses on after you land in your destination.
1. Have a general plan
Hopefully before you left and packed for your trip you made some sort of plan of what you were going to do. Even if that plan is to only bring bathing suits to lie on the beach all day. That’s still a plan. This way, when you get off of the plane you have an idea of where to start.
2. Know what is required of you from a foreign country
If your destination is a foreign country, you’ll have to fill out paperwork and head through customs and immigration before you can leave the airport. Keep your passport close to you that way you’re ready to go. There’s nothing to worry about. They’re just going to ask you questions about your stay in their country. Every question will be different, but an example might be, “how long are you staying in ____?” So as long as you know the deets about your vacay, you’re golden.
3. Don't be scared of public transportation
Now it’s time to travel to the hotel areato drop off your bags, because most flights land early and check in times at hotels are normally between 2 and 4pm. This way the hotel staff knows you’re here and can ensure a clean room for you and lock up your luggage so you can still make the most of your day. Most countries have easily accessible transportation from the airport. If you didn’t previously book transportation there will most likely be taxis, buses, trains, and rental cars directly outside of the airport baggage claim area.
4. Make sure to bring a little bit of cash along
I would recommend using an ATM to withdraw a little bit of that country’s currency out. Do it even if there is a steeper ATM fee because currency exchange places take a larger amount of tax out, from my experiences. It’s always good to carry a little bit of cash in a foreign country in case they do not accept cards, or if your card declines.
5. Learn the basics of the language
Before traveling to a foreign country, look up some of the basic phrases in that country’s language. This is important for your safety so you do not get lost, you can order the correct items on menus, and you are being respectful to their culture. Learn how to say hello, goodbye, thank you, please, you’re welcome, bathroom, directions, and water. You do not have to be perfect at this. I have a terrible memory so I screen shot how to say it on my phone so that I have it readily available.
6. Be knowledgeable about the culture
Speaking of culture, make sure you are aware of some cultural traditions. For example, if you travel to Japan know when to take your shoes off before entering certain areas, if you’re in the middle east know when you need to have your skin covered up, etc.
7. Know basic information such as: the hotel address and phone number and the country of your residence's embassy address and phone number
Before you go walking around and exploring, make sure you take a picture of a map of the city you’re in and write down the phone number of your hotel in case you forget which way you came from. Jet lag is a real thing, you’re not always fully aware of what you’re doing when you become extremely exhausted. It's also a good idea to look up your country's embassy address and phone number. God forbid anything happens to your passport or travel documents and you have no idea what to do. At least this way you have a place to start.
8. Beat the jet lag
Also on the topic of jet lag, refrain from alcohol as much as possible, drink waterwhenever you can and more than you normally do because the plane dehydrates you way more than you think it does. Take a nap if you need to, but make sure you still fall asleep at a decent timeso you’re not thrown off the next day. Sometimes on international trips I have to take melatonin so that I can keep my body clock at the right time. It normally doesn’t make me drowsy the next day, which is definitely a plus. Being up at such a high altitude with a pressurized cabin really drains your energy. It's a good idea to wear compression socks or tights so that you get appropriate blood circulation through your legs as you're sitting down for such a long period of time. Take a deep breath and do breathing practices periodically to calm any nerves you might have while flying.
9. Boost your immunity
My best kept secret: echinacea. I find it more effective than vitamin C packets. You can buy it in pill or tincture form. I use the tincture bottle made without alcohol. It is so much easier to take and doesn't taste nearly as harsh. You can never have too many immunity boosters. Oil of oregano is amazing as well, but it has a lot stronger of a taste. Vitamin C packets never hurt, however. They're easy to carry around and mix into a water bottle for extra immune support. To battle bloat while keeping your immune system above average, I would recommend Optigreens 50 by First Phorm. Each serving contains 11 servings of vegetables. You might be thinking, Uhmmmm Ewwww?!?! green drinks are disgusting. TRUST ME. I've had my fair share of throw up worthy green supplements. BUT, this one actually tastes GOOD. It also helps me with consistent digestive health and give me an energy boost. It's a lifesaver.