Even More Useful Travel Tips
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We received great feedback from last month’s feature, “Very Useful Travel Tips.” By popular demand, and to further help our fellow travelers, here are more very useful travel tips culled from issues of the Bottom Line Personal publication.
Hotel business centers getting upgrades.
Many hotels are making their business centers more efficient and useful. Improvements include moving them to the lobby area, offering free Wi-Fi, installing more comfortable seats, and upgrading technology, such as videoconferencing and printing wirelessly from hotel laptops or your own device. Next time you book a room, ask what the business center offers.
Save time at security with TSA PreCheck.
Check your boarding pass for TSA PreCheck codes, which show that you’ve been enrolled in the TSA’s expedited security screening program. Members can walk through a separate, faster line at the airport. With PreCheck, you don’t have to remove shoes, belts, or light jackets, and laptops don’t have to be taken out of their bags. Also, some airports have special security lanes for prescreened passengers.
Travel safety tips to remember.
When you’re traveling, there are things you can do to help protect your personal belongings. First, don’t bring your checkbook or credit cards you don’t need. If you carry a purse, camera bag, or other type of bag, get a slash-proof one. Don’t accept “help” from strangers, and trust your instinct with people trying to “sell” you something. Also, watch your bags on airport conveyor belts and while using public transportation.
Advice before traveling abroad.
Read reviews of international airlines on AirlineRatings.com, which offers reviews based on ratings safety, service, and amenities. Also consider registering for the free Smart Traveler Enrollment program at Step.State.gov, which lets the U.S. government know where you are traveling abroad, so you can be alerted if any issues arise.
Prepare credit cards for travel.
Before going away, let your credit card issuers know that you’ll be traveling, so that increased activity won’t trigger a fraud alert and potential card shutdown. Pay as much off the balance beforehand to keep within credit limits, carry a back-up card, and bring toll-free customer service numbers just in case.
Ready your bags for flying.
Making sure your suitcases are zip closed and locked aren’t the only things you should do prior to flying. If possible, weigh your bag to ensure it’s under the 50 lbs. checked bag limit. Before leaving for the airport, put local contact information and your cell phone number somewhere visible inside your bags, so if lost, someone can easily contact you. Outside the bag, attach bright tape, a scarf, or other personal marker that will identify it as yours among the sea of black bags on the conveyor belt. If you check your bags, verify the destination code on your receipts, and look up the codes at AirportCodes.com.
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