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Let's hear your travel hacks!

As things start to open back up, I'm curious to hear what people have learned to do to make their traveling experiences the best as possible. Not just "get status" but things more available to anyone.


For example, I got thinking about this when I bought a small organizer bag, a tiny laptop charger, and a few other things. Now I can pack everything I need for my electronics (other than the computer/tablet itself) in something that takes up the same amount of space as a traditional bulky laptop charger would.

๐Ÿ›ฉ Travel
22
funcoupons
WR Officer
+11
Kahluapons
If traveling with a checked bag, pack a carry on with essentials. Medication, a change of clothes, toothbrush, phone charger, toiletries you need. That way, if your luggage gets lost you're not stranded wherever with only the gross sweaty clothes on your back and nothing else.

Be kind to the check in person and flight attendants, greet them with a smile and a good morning/afternoon/evening. Not only because it's the polite thing to do, but because they get shit from rude people all day. Your friendly face might get you an upgraded seat or a free drink.

Dress nicely for flights. Business casual is preferred. If coach/business is overbooked and they need to bump people up to the next class they'll look for people who belong there - not the people in pajamas who looked like they just rolled out of bed. This also helps if you need help from the airline...flight got cancelled and you need on the next one? The person dressed nicely looking important will get better and more efficient treatment than others, it's a fact.
funcoupons
WR Officer
+11
Kahluapons
Oh one last tip...before you get settled in your seat, wipe everything around you down with a sanitizer wipe. The seat, tv screen, seatbelt latch, tray, everything you might end up touching. People are fucking gross on planes, changing baby's diapers on the tray where food goes, picking their nose, not washing their hands after going to the bathroom...and airlines do not clean like this often, if at all.
WCK
Politicker
+8
Padre de Tequila
I can't stress enough the carry-on with essentials. It is so overlooked but so key.
CuriousFox
WR Officer
+11
Needer of Life Alert
Packing cubes changed my life.ย 
funcoupons
WR Officer
+11
Kahluapons
I LOVE packing cubes. Keeps my suitcase so organized and tidy, super easy to find stuff, and when you go home you can put all of your dirty stuff in a cube so it doesn't contaminate the rest of your clean clothes.
CuriousFox
WR Officer
+11
Needer of Life Alert
I packed for my two week training in one carry on case. Totally worth the $80 I spent at the department store for these things. I even watched YouTube tutorials. I don't know how I functioned before ๐Ÿคทโ€โ™€๏ธ
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braintank
Politicker
+6
Enterprise Account Executive
This bag changed my life: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07H59NJ4Z/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apa_glt_fabc_58S8QNNPVM3325AZCSNP
Tres
Politicker
+6
Account Executive
@braintankย I'm a big carry on only guy, so this bag looks perfect for that
braintank
Politicker
+6
Enterprise Account Executive
100% -- it's perfect. Suit and shirts don't get wrinkled and plenty of room for shoes, workout gear, etc. Much more convenient than a traditional garment bag.
SalesPharaoh
Politicker
+8
AM BDR
should be added in the commission store
Telehealth_2the_Moon
Notable Contributor
+12
Director of Business Development
Sold! I hadn't searched hard yet, but I had in mind what I wanted to replace my garment bag, this checks all the boxes. Thanks for the recommendation!
braintank
Politicker
+6
Enterprise Account Executive
I was worried clothes would get wrinkled but so far so good.
Beans
Politicker
+5
Account Executive
NEXUS Pass for my NA folks.ย 
Telehealth_2the_Moon
Notable Contributor
+12
Director of Business Development
I'll have to check that out. I've got pre-check along with global entry. Global entry has been a lifesaver, walking right through customs after 15 hours of flying is quite rewarding.
AinslieStreet
Politicker
+5
Sales Consultant
Never, and I mean NEVER, fly American Airlines.ย 
Telehealth_2the_Moon
Notable Contributor
+12
Director of Business Development
Haha I wish that was an option. Living in Chicago means I have United and Southwest hubs, but American has a huge presence going to places that the others don't, it's definitely the last choice.
AinslieStreet
Politicker
+5
Sales Consultant
No way, I'm in Chicago too! I fly United out of ORD exclusively because of that. But my travel was United-friendly. Mostly to Akron, OH and Orange County, CA.ย 
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CaneWolf
Politicker
+12
Call me what you want, just sign the damn contract
AmEx Platinum is absolutely worth it if you travel in the US a lot.

If you're traveling for something that requires hiking boots or something bulky that doesn't fit in your bag, use a plastic bag and tie it to the handle of your carry-on. Security won't say a thing.
Telehealth_2the_Moon
Notable Contributor
+12
Director of Business Development
That's a good idea, shoes are always the bane of packing light just due to how much space they take up!
JJASBE
Catalyst
+6
Sr. AE
Not sure this is a hack, per se- but I typically go up to the desk before boarding and ask nicely, 'is there any way in the universe you might be able to find me an upgraded seat?ย  I know the flight isn't quite at capacity, and would be so grateful if you could help me."

3 out of 5 times, I've been upgraded to First at no additional charge.
The key insight I picked up once was that the desk person looked at my (last minute purchase) ticket and said 'wow you did pay a lot for this ticket...let me get you moved.'

I will try this on EVERY flight from here on out.ย  Perhaps it'll work for you?ย  Good luck lol
Telehealth_2the_Moon
Notable Contributor
+12
Director of Business Development
Nice stuff, you don't get what you don't ask for. Also, gate agents deal with so much shit all the time, they must just love having someone be nice and pleasant to work with for a little.
JJASBE
Catalyst
+6
Sr. AE
That's my theory too.ย  I was traveling with my son to Dublin and it was just after his 18th birthday.ย  I asked kindly could we work together to give him a first class experience.ย  That was one of the no's, but we did move from the 30's to the early teens on that flight, in terms of seating.ย  At least we boarded and exited earlier than we would've originally.ย  People enjoy helping when they can.ย  It's helpful to tell them exactly how you might be helped :)
TheFemaleWolf
Opinionated
+3
Director of Sales
I only flew American. Good status perks and easy upgrades. That said Miami is a hub so they are better here.ย 

Small hacks. Have old school wired headphones in case your Bluetooth accidentally dies.

Buy the airline WiFi package so you donโ€™t have to buy every time depending on how often you fly.ย 

Buy Briggs and Riley bags. Lifetime guarantee and hold up SO well.ย 
Telehealth_2the_Moon
Notable Contributor
+12
Director of Business Development
Awesome stuff, thank you
paddy
Arsonist
+9
Account Executive
I keep an emergency briefcase stuffed with cash, passports, cigars, and a rubber chicken (don't ask why) at all times when I travel.ย 
Telehealth_2the_Moon
Notable Contributor
+12
Director of Business Development
I bet the rubber chicken has seen some shit
WCK
Politicker
+8
Padre de Tequila
If you look for cost-efficient flights, use Hopper to track the dates and airports, and use skiplagged to book. Hopper's price prediction algorithm is head and shoulders above everyone else, but Skiplagged will ALWAYS have better rates. Track with Hopper, when notified of bottom pricing, use Skiplagged to buy.
Telehealth_2the_Moon
Notable Contributor
+12
Director of Business Development
Solid stuff, I'll check it out for my personal trips!
Ba
Bandido
Politicker
+3
Client Director
More of a booking hack, but I book all my vacations on the on expedia using their bundle deals (I think they call them packages now) its them bundling flights and hotels together and the cost difference from booking direct is insane.

We did our whole honeymoon in europe as like 3 or 4 different "bundles within a bundle" and saw so many different cities for a fraction of the cost.
1nbatopshotfan
Politicker
+5
Senior Director, Enterprise Technology
I have a spare set of chargers in my travel bag so that I donโ€™t have to cobble together the ones I use daily. Itโ€™s a nice set up.ย 
Telehealth_2the_Moon
Notable Contributor
+12
Director of Business Development
Yeah, 100%, that's how I went down this rabbit hole for the hack I shared in the original post, looked into a second laptop charger to not have to untangle everything whenever I leave
Artemis
Politicker
+7
Business Development Representative
I just learned today that I'll be taking my first ever work trip in two weeks. So thanks for posting this thread, because it will be so helpful for me!
DonDraper
Politicker
+4
National Sales Manager
I always take a Powerbaord with me for all my devices. Just put one in your bag, even International - 1 adapter is all that is required.
Telehealth_2the_Moon
Notable Contributor
+12
Director of Business Development
I'm assuming this is a battery pack type of thing, but I googled it since I'm looking for a new one I can keep on me and the first hits where all one of those two wheeled "hoverboards". Went down a fun lane thinking about you carrying that around on planes with you...
JuicyKlay
Politicker
+9
AM
I keep a suitcase always packed with literally everything I need expect my phone and laptop.ย 
DustFrog
Valued Contributor
+4
Business Development Manager
-Get precheck, but also get good at moving through that shit quickly. Don't slow down us pros.

-Don't fly/drive/sleep with any company you don't get rewards for. Take advantage of that shit.

-Try to stick with whatever brand of airline/hotel/car that's most convenient for your city/cities. I live in a United Hub, so I roll with that, Enterprise, and Hilton/IHG (depending on the city). Better to concentrate your rewards so you're Gold with 1 and not Bronze with 3. Bronze is useless.

-Bring a good portable phone charger like an Anker. You never know when you'll get delayed. Having a charged phone is essential.

-Have non-wrinkle clothes

-Fly in to smaller airports whenever possible. Fuck Heathrow, O'Hare, etc if you can. Although ATL does a great job.

-Get a good Dopp kit. Include a couple of band-aids and tylenol in there. Also those little teeth-brushy things and some wipes if it'll fit. Sometimes you have to do a quick whore bath before a meeting.

-Not checking a bag is always the goal.

-When I fly I always try to pick the same seat on the plane. Not always possible I know, but when in doubt I'm 12A. That way if I ever get messed up, hungover, look at the wrong ticket, etc I'm in the right spot 95% of the time anyway. Window seat FTW.ย 

-Try to shit before you go to the airport. Nothing worse than getting stuck in the stall next to the dude who has been holding it on an international flight for 8 hours and is still depressurizing.ย 

-Pack extra undies and an extra pair of "leisure" clothes (tshirt and shorts). You never know.

-Noise cancelling headphones are game changers.

-If you're driving and need to take a dump, look for a business travel hotel (Holiday Inn, Ramada, etc). The lobby bathrooms are always super clean and hardly ever anyone in there.

-It is 10x better to get to the airport an hour early than an hour late. Killing time in an airport sucks but the alternative of missing a flight (and either wrecking your appointment schedule or not being able to go home) is the worst.

There's probably more but as you can tell I'm thinking about pooping.

Source: former (pre-COVID) 80k miles/yr traveller.
hauru.sales
Arsonist
+8
Sales Enthusiast
Lighter Nokia
Telehealth_2the_Moon
Notable Contributor
+12
Director of Business Development
I'm lost, what is this?
hauru.sales
Arsonist
+8
Sales Enthusiast
First generation of Nokia Mobile phone, super hard to broke! useful with everything!
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