News For Planners

Tips for getting through the airport faster

Thursday, 7/28/2011  6:12:57 PM

Business people who frequently travel by plane all share a common gripe: the seemingly absurd amount of time it takes to get into, through and out of the airport. From navigating confusing parking lots and terminals to checking bags and standing in line for security checks, this can amount to hours of productivity stolen from your day.

Make sure you don't miss that big face to face meeting by following these simple tips for getting through the airport and on with your life more quickly:

1. Have a friend or family member drop you off directly in front of the the terminal. This will cut down on time spent trying to find the appropriate parking area and then making your way back to the right terminal. It will also save you cash because you won't be paying obscene overnight parking fees.

2. Use online check-in services. By checking into the airport online, you can save time you would normally spend standing in line waiting for your boarding pass.

3. Dress the part of a smart traveler. Remove all metal jewelry, loose change and keys from your person before you hit the security check lines. Don comfortable fabrics that don't have a lot of metal fastenings or pockets. Wear shoes that are easy to slip on and off, in case of inspection.

4. Prepare yourself for security checks. You know that they're coming, and you have to wait in line anyway. Get your ID and boarding pass out ahead of time, as you'll need to show them to security officials. Empty your pockets. Remove jackets or sweaters. Unzip laptop and other electronics cases so that they can be inspected.

5. Bring a carry-on only. It may not save you cash, as many airlines are now charging for carry-on parcels as well as checked baggage. But you can save time avoiding the baggage check by cramming everything you need into a carry-on. By doing so, you'll also skip the merciless wait at the luggage carousel when you touch down from your flight.

6. Skip the travel-sized shampoos. If you can avoid bringing soaps, shampoos and other "restricted" items with you, it may cut down on inspection times. Many hotels provide these items anyway, and if they don't, the nearest drugstore probably isn't too far away.

Help yourself get to that important business conference faster by traveling smarter. You'll feel less stressed, and you may even find yourself with a few extra moments to relax.

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