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There are plenty of things you can plan for when booking your next vacation. But there’s also a lot that’s out of your control once you board the plane. Hidden fees, uncomfortable seats and delayed flights are all things that can ruin your trip. Thankfully, there are some things you can do to make sure your next flight is not just bearable but actually enjoyable. The key is being prepared with the right knowledge before you get on the plane. That way, no matter what unexpected events may occur, you’ll be in a position to handle them smoothly and leave the experience with nothing but good memories. Here are some great tips from travel experts to help get you ready for your next United Airlines flight:
Know your rights
First and foremost, you should know your rights when it comes to flying. This will help you to feel more confident in what you deserve and what you should and shouldn’t put up with from an airline. Here are the main aspects of air travel you should be familiar with: - Your check-in time - You have the right to check your luggage for free, but if you’re checking bags, you’ll need to arrive at the airport two hours before your flight leaves. While there is no standard time for how early you need to arrive at the airport, the earlier the better. Check-in times vary between airlines and can change depending on the day and time of year you’re flying. - Your seat - If you have a special needs, medication or are pregnant, you can select your seat before you check in. Otherwise, you can change your seat once you’re at the airport. - Lost and delayed luggage - While it can sometimes happen, lost luggage is not normal. You’re entitled to compensation, but with some airlines, the process for getting that money is quick and easy. Delayed luggage, on the other hand, can sometimes be a major hassle that leaves you without necessary items or without a change of clothes.
Check your bag and choose your seat
When it comes to packing, you need to check the airline’s restrictions. Some will allow you to bring a carry-on bag, while others require you check a suitcase. If you’re bringing a bag, make sure to check the airline’s weight restrictions. United Airlines allows each traveler to check two bags for free, with a maximum weight of 50 pounds per bag. You should also check if your airline has a new clear-bag policy, as it’s designed to increase safety by allowing screeners to see what’s inside your bag. If you’re taking a long trip, having a clear bag can make it much easier to see what you need without having to rummage around. Choose a seat as soon as you check in, if possible, to avoid the stress of waiting until the last minute. You can do it online or at the airport.
Download entertainment and language apps
There are a number of great apps that you can download on your phone before your flight. Some of the most important ones to have include a translation app, noise-cancelling headphones and an entertainment app with movies and TV shows. If you’re traveling abroad, download a translation app like Google Translate before you go. You’ll not only be able to translate written language but also spoken language, so you can interact with locals. Noise-cancelling headphones are a great way to drown out the engine noise and enjoy the inflight entertainment in peace. If you’re traveling with children, they can be a lifesaver. Just make sure to download the apps before you go so they’re ready to use when you board the plane.
Be prepared for takeoff and landing
Before you take off, make sure you have everything you need at your fingertips. This includes your travel documents, a pen and reading material. When landing, make sure to have your belongings packed away as quickly as possible. This will help you get off the plane quicker and make your way through the airport more smoothly. If you have a long flight, you may want to bring a pillow or a neck pillow. This will make the trip more comfortable and help you sleep better.
Use the bathroom before and after flight
Before you board the plane, use the bathroom because you may not get another chance until you arrive at your destination. Once you arrive at your destination, use the bathroom before you go to the baggage claim area. This is especially important when you’re arriving in a new city where the bathrooms may be less than desirable.
Don't be fear to ask for what you need
If you’re flying with a disability, illness or injury, make sure you let the airline know beforehand. You’re entitled to special assistance, and you may not even have to ask for it. Rather than suffer in silence, make sure the airline is aware of any special needs you have. If you’re flying with young children, you should let the airline know in advance. They’ll likely be able to help you out with anything you need, such as a later flight time or a noise-free section of the plane. Some airlines even have special programming for children, so they can keep the noise to a minimum.
Take care of yourself with food and exercise
Be sure to eat well before you fly, as you won’t have much space in the seat in front of you. You should drink plenty of water, as well, since planes are dry and dehydrating. If you’re traveling long distance, you can also bring food with you. This can help you sustain energy and keep you from getting too hungry. Exercise before your flight to help release tension and make you more comfortable throughout your flight. You can even do simple stretches while waiting at the airport. If you’re going on a long flight, it’s a good idea to stretch and move around as much as possible to prevent blood clots from forming in your legs. You can also wear compression stockings to help with this.
Travel can be amazing, and the plane is where you begin the journey. That’s why it’s important to prepare yourself before getting on the plane. These tips will help you to navigate the airport, understand your rights and prepare for your flight. With these travel tips, you’ll be able to relax and enjoy your trip no matter which airline you’re flying.
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