U.S.A. As someone who was born and raised near New York City, I always seemed to be more exhausted and frustrated with air travel because of the airports. It seems that airports tend to make many travelers anxious for their upcoming trips. Most of us associate these hubs as chaotic and stressful, loud and overwhelming. We think “Oh great, I’m packing my things now just to undo it all during the security check”, “The lines are going to take forever” or “Today is going to be such a long day!”. If this sounds like you, here are a few ways to make your travel experiences smoother.

Be Punctual!

It’s always better to arrive too early than to run to catch your plane as it’s leaving. If anything, you have extra time to get through the security lines, grab a meal or sit and wait for boarding. To make this wait more enjoyable, download a movie on your laptop or phone. Another option is to people watch; when else will you see people from so many unique places at once?  The time will fly by!

Be an Organized Packer!

If you take the time to pack neatly, traveling will be much less stressful. Keep electronics together and most importantly, pack liquids in clear sealable bags PRIOR to your departure for the airport. By placing these items in a reachable spot of your suitcase, you will be able to easily go through security and keep your belongings together when on your trip. This will save significant time as well as avoid needing your bags to be re-screened or losing them.

Be Proactive!

If given the option, check in for your flight and print your boarding passes before you arrive at the airport. This is a huge time saver because it allows you to go straight to security. Another way to be proactive is to arrange transport to and from airports well in advance. You must also make sure to have your identification, cash, and credit cards or else you will not be permitted to board your flight.

Be Flexible!

I have learned time and time again how rare it is for my plans to work out exactly as expected. Allow some room for flexibility in your plans; it will help you maintain a good attitude, avoid stress and be more at ease. Otherwise, setbacks can make your travel experience a nightmare. If your flight is delayed, grab a snack or drink at a restaurant, go to one of the bookstores to browse magazines, or talk with others in the airport; you never know who you’ll meet!