NATIONAL NEWS - With the festive season approaching, many of us will be planning visits to loved ones or holiday destinations.
It’s a wonderful time of the year, with opportunities to reconnect with friends and family, and to take a break from commutes, meetings, teleconferences and the to-do lists. This does lead to airports getting overcrowded, but that needn’t mean getting caught in the throng.
Shaun Pozyn, head of marketing at kulula.com and British Airways (operated by Comair) offers the following tips to make the most of your airport experience:
Take care of business online
In our fast-paced world, it is no secret that customers prefer to do so much more from their laptops, tablets and smartphones. With everybody being online 24/7, checking in online is not only empowering, but quick, easy and most of all it gives you an opportunity to share the news that you are on your way to that island getaway with all your friends on Facebook!
Lighten your load
Rather than queuing to check in your luggage, you can use the bag drop facilities if you have already checked yourself in and only have your luggage to be taken care of.
Breeze through security
With boarding pass in hand, and your luggage taken care of all you need to do is get yourself onto the plane and off on your well-deserved holiday. But first you need to get through security. Before getting to the airport make sure you are free of any metal that will cause beeps, such as copper change or a bunch of keys that will set off the metal detector. Rather, place that in your hand luggage and put it through the scanner. If you are travelling with a laptop, take it out of its bag ahead of time and move swiftly through security.
Remember the regulations on what you can carry in your handluggage: it’s not just the bayonet which your grandad brought home from the war and which is now used to cut the cake at family weddings, like the one you’re flying to. Security staff are likely to confiscate nail-scissors, multitools and even toy weapons. “That floppy rubber sword your little Jack or Jane Sparrow likes to brandish? It might be taken away, much to your pirate’s distrrrrrrress,” warns Pozyn.
Give junior a tablet
And if you’re travelling with youngsters, you’ll be grateful for toys and games that keep them busy. But while Lego and Meccano are excellent for kids’ creativity, the small parts will be tricky to retrieve from the floor of an airline cabin.
This may be the one occasion to let the kids play on a smartphone or tablet as much as they like.
Chew on this
Small children sometimes struggle to equalise the pressure in their ears as the aircraft ascends and descends, so age-appropriate food and drink that encourage swallowing can help. If you’re worried that sugar will make them hyperactive, then cooled rooibos tea and droëwors will do the trick.