Stress-free travel Eight handy hacks for a happy holiday
Travel smoothly every time with these tips
RE-PACK YOUR SUITCASE
Dragging a big suitcase can be a nightmare – think navigating airports and hotels without elevators with that behemoth. There’s a better way. Pull out your case and pack everything you think you need for your upcoming trip. Now, take a look at everything in there and really question if you need that extra pair of jeans or second dress shirt.
CHOOSE YOUR PLANE SEAT
Heading on a long-haul flight? Do not, under any circumstances, leave your seat selection until the airport check-in – you may end up in the middle of the middle row. Some airlines charge for booking seats until online check-in becomes available 24 to 48 hours prior to flying. If you don’t want to pay, set an alarm to login at the time you can check-in.
GET TRAVEL INSURANCE
Don’t risk it, if heading overseas or cruising, travel insurance is a must. Travellers without travel insurance are personally liable for covering any medical and associated costs. Don’t think that a broken ankle or gastro will happen to you? You never know. And while you’re at it, jump on Smart Traveller (smartraveller.gov. au) and check the travel advice for the country you are visiting.
ALWAYS BE COURTEOUS TO FLIGHT CREW AND, IN RETURN, YOU WILL GET BETTER SERVICE EVERY TIME
WORK OUT YOUR ROUTE ON GROUND
Wondering whether to catch the train, bus or hire a car to get from A to B – which is quicker and which is cheaper? Download the Rome2rio app where you can compare various modes of transportation, as well as their prices. It also gives you estimated travel times. Rome2rio displays flight, train, bus, ferry and driving options. rome2rio.com.
USE A TRAVEL AGENT
A trusted travel agent will be there every step of your journey, you just need to stipulate exactly what you want from your holiday and let them help make the perfect personalised itinerary. The advantages? They can often get better deals and perks, such as free breakfast and room upgrades, and should anything go wrong when you’re away, they are your point of contact.
CUT PHONE COSTS
After you come home from a holiday, you don’t want to be stuck with a huge phone bill. Set up a travel pack with your phone company, where you pay $5 to $10 per day to access data and make calls. Check notifications and turn off anything that is not needed. Make sure you have maps and services like Whatsapp and Messenger for when wifi is available.
Heading to a country for the first time and want to see all the sights? Maybe it’s the US and you’ve scheduled two days in Los Angeles, one night in Las Vegas and two days in San Francisco? Big mistake! Remember to factor in all the travelling time in-between, whether it’s by car, train or plane. It’s always better to spend longer in a city so you can really explore, instead of ticking off sites. Be flexible. If you schedule in too much you will just be exhausted and won’t have a good time.
track your spending
You want to make every cent count on your holiday. An easy way to keep tabs is to download an app called Trail Wallet. All you need to do is set yourself a daily budget and, every time you make a purchase, simply input your spend. The app can convert currency for you so you can do it all in Australian dollars. voyagetravelapps.com/ trail-wallet.
ARE YOU AN AISLE OR WINDOW SEAT PERSON? IT’S IMPORTANT TO CHOOSE AHEAD BE SURE TO READ THE FINE PRINT CAREFULLY BEFORE CHOOSING YOUR TRAVEL INSURANCE POLICY
SAVE TIME BY PLANNING YOUR ROUTE
DON’T TRY TO TICK OFF THE BUCKET LIST ALL AT ONCE