Turkey Lurkey!, by Sugar Daze

First off, Happy Thanksgiving to everyone! If you are traveling today, here are a few tips that have served me well over the years.

  • Read your airline’s policy on carry-on bags (size and weight) BEFORE you pack
  • Carry everything on if you can
  • Convert large liquid toiletries into small travel sizes for your trip
  • Ship anything bulky or any large quantities of liquids instead of bringing them on the plane
  • Research the airport layout and probable location for your departure gate so you know exactly where to go, how to get there, and nearby food and drink options
  • If you are not checking a bag, check in online the day before (within 24-hours of departure) and ensure your seat selection is good, and print out your boarding pass
  • If you must check a bag, read your airline’s policies for weight and what charges you may incur
  • Arrive at least two hours before your departure (more at some airports, contact your airline for guidance)
  • When approaching the TSA checkpoint, have your ID ready with your boarding pass
  • Smile and be cool and friendly with the TSA agent (do you think he or she likes being called a molester?)
  • Pull your laptop and any other large electronics out of your bag and run them through the X-Ray separately
  • Remove top layer coats, shoes, belts, metal objects, and everything from your pockets and run it through the X-Ray (I typically put everything in my coat pocket and run that through which allows me to exit the checkpoint quickly)
  • If you see the backscatter (TSA Porn-o-matic) machine in use for everyone, just go through it to avoid the intrusive pat down
  • Remember, you don’t get to choose the TSA agent that gives you a pat down (Bunny Ranch style)1
  • If you see the machine in use for “random selections,” get in line immediately after someone is selected (not foolproof, but works most of the time)
  • Quickly go through the checkpoint, and proceed to picking up your belongings (get them quickly and move along to avoid creating a line behind you)
  • Go to your gate, and sit down for a bit
  • When it is time to board, ONLY BOARD when your group is called
  • After boarding, quickly move down to your row and step into the row while stowing baggage
  • Put one of your bags under the seat in front of you (if it will fit, and if you have that option)
  • ENJOY YOUR FLIGHT!

Finally folks, please remember, Flight Attendants like Heather Poole are there for your safety first, and comfort second. Unless you paid for a first class ticket, don’t be upset if:

  • You can’t find a spot for your bag
  • You are in a middle seat between two fat guys
  • The food option you wanted to purchase is not available
  • The drink you want is not available
  • Your headphones don’t work for the in-flight entertainment

And even if you did pay for that big ticket, it’s just a couple of hours! 🙂

This post originally appeared on BrandenWilliams.com.

  1. Though it would be an interesting business model. []