It had been a long time for most of us when it comes to flying. And I know I have forgotten some of the little things, like leaving nails scissors at home and packing those items like big moisturizer bottles in my checked baggage. But not to worry here are a few things to kick-start your next adventure.
1. Don’t expect the person in front and behind you to be courteous when putting their sets back or not kicking the back of your seat. Just try to go with the flow. Be calm and think of the holiday you are about to take. Don’t forget you can put your hands on the back of their seat to stop it from going back and will just think it is broken and go to sleep upright.
2. Flight attendants are meant to be courteous and welcoming, however, right now, they are out of practice or very new to the industry so many will be short with you, inattentive or many seem just plain rude. Just remember they must have just had to deal with over 100 angry passengers, a vomiting child, and a row of offensive, uptight tourists who had just spent the last 30 minutes shouting at them. Just smile and be as nice as you can, you will be amazed at how your demeanor will spread. Give them a compliment and assure them you will make their job easy. Now is the time to show how good you are at helping the situation not making it worse.
3. I got stuck in an airline toilet. I needed to change my clothes and as you can imagine it didn’t go so well. On the way back, from London to Sydney, the airline attendant told me I can use the disabled toilet. It may seem to some that my using this facility is totally unbelievable but trust me after 14 hours in the air you need room to use a toilet. So, if you can use one and you are not pushing anyone else out of the way. Do it. I agreed only because I have arthritis in both my knees, however, just do what you need to do but with courtesy and compassion.
4. Instead of reading a paper or watching something on your phone, watch and take in the Emergency Instructions. You may feel it is all common sense goes out the window in an emergency. So, learn a little and be safe. We have not watched the procedures for 2 years and are rusty.
5. Make sure your carry-on has a change of underwear, a set of light clothes, Chapstick, a 50ml bottle of moisturizer, and anti-bacterial wipes. You never know when the person in front will put their seat down and knock your drink all over you, or your checked luggage stays on the ground or goes to China while you are in Switzerland and being in the air you need moisturizer. And of course, as many of us are now aware, our planes are now taking off without our luggage. So having enough supplies for at least 24 hours will be a huge help. Keep an eye on how much hand luggage you can take and take every last kilogram of it.
6. Keep to still or carbonated water. Let’s face it if you are in Economy the coffee still sucks. Alcohol will just dehydrate you more and will contribute to jetlag. So, break out the water and get stuck in.
7. Make sure you fill in your landing card correctly and yes anything that goes in your mouth is food. Chocolate, nuts, dried anything. If it is confiscated at customs, don’t get annoyed, pay the fine and just let it go. And you never know, you might end up on one of those Customs Television Programs.
And of course, a bonus tip that is now so very important, ground crew, airline staff, security, etc, are all in very short supply right now, do yourself a favour and get to the airport earlier than you think is reasonable. The airport may not be open if your flight is at 8am and you arrive at 3am but believe me you will have the company of about 400 other passengers who are doing the same. You may even get a free coffee while standing out in the cold.