Our Senior Vice President of Sales, John Thiesfeld, spends more than one third of his year on the road. This makes John our most well-traveled team member and our go-to expert for traveling advice. Whether you fly once a year, or multiple times a week, John’s tips can turn even the most inexperienced flyer into a traveling connoisseur!
Move away from checking a bag.
“It not only saves you time on departure, but you have everything you need if your flight gets canceled. This allows you to get on a different flight without worrying about your possessions.”
Sign up for TSA Pre ✓.
“It is worth every penny of the cost, even if you don’t fly often. Knowing you will rarely have a long wait for security is reassuring.”
Pack smart and be prepared.
“If you are traveling for business, pack your dress shirts and suits in the plastic bags from the dry cleaners. It keeps them fresh and less wrinkled. If you can, always have a bag packed with your regular travel items; this saves time and stress when a trip comes up last minute.”
Pack healthy snacks.
“Always keep healthy snacks in your carry-on bag. Though most airports sell healthy options, you can bring your own for a fraction of the cost”.
“Make sure to charge all electronics the night before your flight. Some airports are loaded with outlets, while others keep you searching.”
Sign up for an airline lounge membership.
“If you fly at least once per month, make sure to sign up for an airline lounge membership. They are a great place to re-charge before a flight. The flight attendants are able to do everything a gate agent can, and sometimes more if your flight gets delayed or cancelled.”
Stick with one hotel company / airline.
“Try to stick to one airline and hotel company. I know with so many travel options available, including Airbnb, it may seem silly, but the perks available (even at the lowest levels of some programs) are worth it.”
Sign up for frequent flyer programs
“Sign up for different airline’s frequent flyer programs, even if you are not sure if you will ever fly them. Being a member and downloading their respective apps can help you if your airline of choice is not available or if there is a problem with your flight. You can often find new flights on the app much faster than trying to call the airline and it is faster than going to the customer service counter.”
Book non-stop flights.
“If possible, make sure to book non-stop flights. Many times, the stress and potential problems that can occur with connection flights, especially those with a tight timeline, are not worth it.”
Take the early flight out.
“It is never fun to wake up at 4 am for the first flight out, but statistics don’t lie; the first flight of the day rarely gets cancelled or delayed. The first flight sets the tone, so the airline will do whatever it takes to get the plane out on time.”
A round trip ticket may not be the best option.
“Though a round trip flight may look easier to book, two one-way tickets may be cheaper. Also, if one of those flights gets cancelled, it is much easier for the airline to change one ticket, as opposed to the airline having to re-issue a round trip ticket.”
Print a boarding pass.
“There have been multiple occasions where the TSA processors were down or the actual check-in machines for the flight were inoperable. The only people allowed through were those with paper boarding passes.”
Exercise and explore the area.
“As a runner, I appreciate a well-equipped fitness center, but my preference is to run outside; it gives me a feel for the destination. If running isn’t your thing, get out of your hotel and walk around the neighborhood. Not only is it good for your health, but you never know what you may be missing!”
Smile and be kind.
“Travel can be stressful on both the traveler and the airline/hotel associates. Make sure to smile and be kind; it is always better than the alternative.”