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The Most Useful Travel Hacks—Straight From The Mouths Of Flight Attendants

Take it from the pros
by Mabie Alagbate | Sep 30, 2017
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With seat sales happening all year-round, it’s no wonder Filipinos have gotten all travel-savvy. It’s not just about having the perfect itinerary or the most on-point IG posts or FB Stories, however. On top of having a basic understanding of your destination’s local customs and culture to ensure you don’t offend people, you also need to have a clear idea of what your plans are during your trip, even if the plan is to not have a plan.

The tiniest bit of detail can make or break your entire vacation. So to help you out, here are some basic but very useful tips and tricks from various local and international flight attendants. Because really, who knows best than these professionals.

1) They always have US Dollars on hand

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Don’t assume that you can easily exchange your Philippine Peso in your country of destination. Other countries have strict money exchange rules; most, if not all, hotels will exchange USD to their local currency. Remember, it’s always better to have cash on hand (break them down into smaller bills) in case any emergency comes up. Also, don’t be complacent about having your credit card with you because not all establishments will necessarily accept them.

2) They have a translator app

Before embarking on your trip, don’t forget to download the Google Translate App. This app is very useful especially if you’re going somewhere where English is not a second language. Also, this app doesn’t require an internet connection, so you can use this sans the WiFi or mobile data.

3) They pack spare undergarments 

You’ll never know when your flight will get cancelled due to unfortunate events. Ideally, you should have these in your hand carry. If it’s going to be in your check-in luggage, then it’s just going to be pointless because you won’t be able to access it anyway.

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4) They roll their clothes

Instead of folding your clothes, you can save a lot of space by rolling them instead. That way, you can bring more items with you, especially if you’re going to be away for several days.

5) They recycle the hotel bottles and refill them for their next flight

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Put those free toiletries to good use! Refill them when finished. Trust, you’ll end up saving a lot of money.

6) They regularly check the weather forecast

Erratic weather will ruin your itinerary. More importantly, you can end up getting sick if you do not have enough protective layering, especially if you’re travelling during the cold season. That’s why it’s best to know the weather beforehand to pack your stuff accordingly. Also, you don’t want to be sick in a foreign country, do you?


7) They bring hard copies of their travel documents

Going paperless is all the rage today, but for your own safety and security, you should print copies of your plane ticket in case you lose the one you have. The same goes for your passport, visas, and whatever other travel documents may be required. Keep one copy on your person, and the other in your checked bag. For additional safety, you can also download a copy to your mobile phone, and upload it in your Cloud or Drive, too.

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8) They always bring a pen

This lets you fill up disembarkation cards and immigration forms faster. Don’t rely on other people to lend you their pens. 

9) They invest in a good world adaptor

It comes in handy ALL. THE. TIME.

10) They drink a lot of water pre-flight

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The humidity on planes is typically around 10 percent. This dry air can lead to dry skin, irritated sinuses and throat, and itchy eyes. Over time, exposure to low humidity can increase your risk of colds, flu, and other infections. So if you’re feeling groggy while flying, that’s probably because you’re dehydrated. Better drink up, especially if it’s a long flight.

11) They go out for a walk under the sun after a flight

The best way to fight jet lag? Go outside, stat. After arrival, spend a lot of time under the sun. Being exposed to sunlight instantly helps your body reset its natural time clock to coincide with your new surroundings. Another trick: For longer trips, stay up until 10 PM local time. In the morning, go out in the sun for 15 minutes—that’ll be enough to help reset your body clock.

12) They save money by designing their own itinerary

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Group tours are fun and may seem cost-efficient. The downside, however, is that you don’t have control of your own time, or that you may not be able to check out the places you’d rather go to because it’s not included in the package. Save money by designing your own itinerary—not only do you get to choose the ones that are more aligned to your budget, but you can also customize it according to your own preferences.

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One other important thing that you should always keep in mind when you’re travelling is to be courteous and grateful to your cabin crew. They are the ones responsible for ensuring your safety when you’re on board their flight—they are not your personal maids up in the sky. Follow their instructions, cooperate as requested, and give them a smile and thanks, especially after a safe landing. These hardworking flight attendants definitely deserve it.

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