10 Airport hacks for travellers to save you time, money, and stress during your next trip, plus time saved at the airport. If busy, travel and strict time plans, can make you a little stressed. Better, show patience! If you prepare your mindset for the chaos, you are much more likely to remain and stay patient during your holiday travel. Expect hiccups, so if they come you can patiently deal with them and move on. From secrets on how to find the cheapest flights, to fly connections and how to beat the check-in queue. Read on and share with us one  significant that we might have missed.

Best Airfare

10 Airport Hacks for Travellers

Sign up for airfare alerts –the lazy-man’s way of finding the best airfare. When the price drops you get an email. How easy is that?

Use the alert as a cue to watch airfare’s price fluctuations closely. If finding the lowest airfare is important, research and patience will prevail. Focus your search on Thursday-Saturday mid-morning, then spot check Sunday – Wednesday to see if your particular flight is playing by its own rules. If you catch a great deal, book it, because in the end, the only thing that is predictable about buying airfare, is that it is unpredictable!

Frequent Flyer Status

You will be able to use business class and priority lineups even if you are flying economy if you are that lucky to achieve elite status with frequent flyer miles. With higher status you can use your economy ticket and still go to the business class check-in queue. Having status with one airline you can have access to perks on all airlines in the alliance.

10 Airport Hacks for Travellers

Arrival Time

For long-haul flight, passengers should aim to arrive 3 hours before departure, get there 2 hours before for European flights and leave around one-and-half hours for UK and Ireland.

Check-in Desk

If you want to avoid or hate standing for hours in disorderly queues with people behind you ramming their suitcases into the back of your ankles, try to have a personal touch and talk face-to-face with someone from the airline. Your chance of getting a cheeky upgrade is also higher if you check-in in person.

Baggage Claim

Upon checking your bag, if you don’t want to delay, assure that you indicate the delicate item you are carrying (or supposed to be carrying), or put a FRAGILE sticker.  Most of the times they are the first ones on the baggage belt to be picked up, allowing you to get out among the first.

10 Airport Hacks for Travellers

At the Gate

Don’t queue to get on the plane 30 minutes earlier. The plane won’t leave without you until they have at least called your name -assuming you have a per-allocated seat of course.

On the Plane

Cross your fingers and if your are lucky this tip will work. Get on board the plane when the flight closing announcement. As you work your way through to Economy, sit in one of the Business seats, on the basis that it must be available, given that the flight was closing. There is the possibility that the flight attendants won’t question it. I don’t think if I would dare it myself, but acquaintances I have do it once in a while and sometimes they succeed it, however there is no guarantee.

Gate Service Fee

They are another basic economy caveat, -a fee that is not fair at all. It is the fee that airlines charge you for forgetting that you are not allowed to have any space in the overhead bin. Basic Economy passengers should check all bags larger than a personal item.

Connecting Flights

This varies from one airport to the other and from one flight to another. For domestic flight 1 hour and for international allow at least 2 hours. Usually, when the connection is with the same airline the gates are very close.

When traveling internationally and with different airlines it can take more time if the gates are not in the same terminal. Those flights that require you to go through customs usually require longer connection times also.

Most airlines offer multiple connections. In this case you can purchase a flight with longer connection, but avoid the last connection of the day. Sit near the front for faster deplaning and choose hubs less prone to delays. When airlines sell their flights they do consider the connecting time and will only sell flights that give you enough time to connect.

10 Airport Hacks for Travellers

Best & Worst Holiday Travel Days

If you are a savvy shopper and an astute observer, you can make holiday travel a lot less painful, probably even pleasant. Check what you could do:

The days before and after holidays are actually some of the best times to travel all year. Hoteliers are ready for deals, and high-end hotels reduce their rates up to 50% in big cities.

What you ought to do is to check social channels and search for last-minute sales around the holidays as they realize they have more inventory than anticipated. It is said that Christmas Day is always the cheapest day to fly during the holidays, but the reality is that airports are quieter on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, but December 27th seems to be the quietest day at the airport. The cheapest days to travel could be December 21, 23 and 29.

More Tips from Smart Travelling


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