Travel Tips: At the Airport

[dt_gap height=”10″ /]You’ve followed my money saving travel tips and nabbed yourself a bargain, you’ve counted down the days and now it’s time to go get yourself to the airport.

What to Wear

A matching trackie and fresh white kicks aren’t the only option of travel wear, even if wearing gym clothes to do non-gym stuff has become a Saturday ritual (I ain’t judging). It makes sense to travel in comfort, but that doesn’t mean you can’t look half presentable too. A DKNY cozy would be my ultimate comfort multi purpose item. Soft and cosy cashmere, that basically doubles up as a blanket when it gets chilly in-flight.  Something like this that doesn’t crease is essential if you want to arrive looking somewhat human and put together on the other side.[dt_gap height=”10″ /]

DKNY light grey cozy
DKNY dark grey cozy

[dt_gap height=”10″ /]Footwear is a toughie, if you’d rather not have to take your shoes off going through security go for flats with no metal buckles.  I feel like wearing your pumps would be wasting valuable space and weight in your luggage so go for your comfiest trainers that’ll go with everything when you arrive. New Balance are my go-to for comfort, they’re about half the price of Nike and hey, they’ve got ‘N’s on.[dt_gap height=”10″ /]

New Balance 420 Trainers black
New Balance 410 Trainers Grey

[dt_gap height=”10″ /]You might be noticing a bit of a colour scheme going on.  I’m a lazy dresser, so I stick to a monochromatic palette of black, white and grey the majority of the time.  It certainly makes packing for a trip easier because you just know everything will go together and you can throw in a few coloured accessories to liven things up.

Even my hoodie travel pillow is grey.  My sister bought this for me for Christmas during the Black Friday sales while we were in Tenerife and I have to admit, I’ve used it outside of a travel situation (I was sick, okay?). But, come on, it’s the best invention ever…a drawstring hood and a neck cushion in one.  I don’t know about you, but I’d prefer not to have the chats with my seat-neighbour, this sends out a “do not talk to me” signal and I don’t even care if that sounds rude. I can’t remember the name of the shop but a quick Google search for ‘hoodie pillow’ and you’ll find them.  Mine is the non-inflatable kind because I don’t have the lung capacity for that sort of thing.[dt_gap height=”10″ /]

Black travel hoodie pillow neck cushion
Grey travel hoodie pillow neck cushion

Luggage

[dt_gap height=”10″ /]I’ve never really lusted for many designer things, but one day I will own a full set of Louis Vuitton monogrammed luggage, one day.[dt_gap height=”10″ /]

Louis Vuitton Monogram Passport Cover
Louis Vuitton Monogrammed Luggage

[dt_gap height=”10″ /]Until then, though, I’m keeping it practical with IT-luggage. They claim to be the ‘world’s lightest’, I can’t say if that’s true but I do know I’ve crammed an awful lot of heels and statement necklaces in for a weekend away and not been charged excess so they’re not heavy that’s for sure.  I bought my cabin size bag in Primark (they’ve got them in Penneys too and it’s the right size for Ryanair flights) or you can order online. They’re frameless for more packing space and are made from an “unbreakable foam structure”.  Sounds good, right? I’m going to get the large one for my next big trip, I wonder what colour though…[dt_gap height=”10″ /]

IT Luggage worlds lightest suitcase
IT Luggage worlds lightest suitcase

[dt_gap height=”10″ /]Tips and Time-Savers

I already mentioned the security shoe-bacle, but there are more ways to save time going through security.  Make sure to choose your queue wisely, obviously avoid kids and OAPs, business men have too many gadgets so they’re not even a good bet any more. Look for solo travellers carrying little hand-luggage.  Speaking of gadgets, you’ll have to take your laptop out of your bag and out of it’s case so if you’re checking in a case and don’t need to work until you arrive, check it in.  Your travel insurance covers loss and damage and it’s one less thing to haul around.

Girls, clip-in extenos can and will trigger the metal detectors, so save yourself the embarrassment.  Belts have to come off as well, plus who wants to be restricted in jeans while flying, so I usually go for thick black leggings (remember, leggings are not pants…so choose yours wisely and consider what you’re wearing on top).  I eat, sleep and breathe with my stack of Alex and Ani arm candy but trying to get them off in a hurry is no easy feat, so I skip them on travel days.

packing travel essentials

[dt_gap height=”10″ /]From my experience, it really depends on who you get at security when it comes to liquids. I’ve had officers let me keep bottles of water I forgot about and some who wouldn’t let me through until my clear plastic bag was completely sealed.  Consistent they aren’t, so you’re best to expect the most strict to avoid delays.  Liquids need to be under 100ml each and all fit into one sealed clear plastic bag, have this in the front pocket of your case or top of your handbag so it’s quick and easy to grab. Or if you’ve planned to have a bit of time at the airport, pick up cheap minis after security to save yourself bringing them through with you.

On the red-eye I nearly always end up mindlessly buying a coffee just before boarding only to be told I can’t bring it on, having to chuck it, then standing in a queue for the next five minutes. When they tell you you’ve got time, that you can stand aside and finish it…believe them.[dt_gap height=”10″ /]

Dublin Airport coffee flight

[dt_gap height=”10″ /]Seat selection and Upgrades

Most airlines offer the option of choosing your own seat, although some charge extra. Unless you need to be sitting beside someone, I say leave it up to chance…I find I can usually wing it at the gate (by asking nicely at the desk before boarding commences or even once on the plane if it’s not full).

Upgrades are really rare nowadays, but if you’re brazen enough it’s usually only an option for solo travellers and make sure you’re well dressed and not carrying a tonne of crap with you.  I’ve been moved up front due to my TV screen not working before, it’s luck of the draw.  If you do wangle it, make sure to act like you’re supposed to be there to avoid any air-rage from full-fare paying passengers!

You know those people who queue for an hour before boarding opens when there’s assigned seating? Yeah, don’t be one of them. As long as you can see the screen and hear the announcements, chill until your row has been called.[dt_gap height=”10″ /]

Passport currency money travel Nadia El Ferdaoussi blogger the daily s'elf

[dt_gap height=”10″ /]I’m ready for another year of travelling well. I’m thinking of making a travel bucket list and ticking them off one blog post at a time.  What places are on your list?

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