To avoid being “that person” (the one holding up the boarding process due to bag struggles) this holiday travel season, you need to plan a bit before you leave. We’ve asked Heather Sanchez, a veteran Hawaiian Airlines flight attendant, for her tips on de-stressing the boarding experience.
• Pack light if you are carrying on luggage. Wear your biggest shoes and heaviest jacket or sweater on the plane and leave the shampoo and bath products at home; most hotels offer an unending supply.
• Most airlines allow passengers one carry-on and one personal item (purse, briefcase, laptop bag, small backpack or small musical instrument). Avoid having to check your bag by following these rules: bags must not exceed 25 pounds and must not exceed 22 inches long, 14 inches wide and 9 inches high.
• Use containers or ziplock bags to organize your belongings and keep clothing from getting wrinkled.
• Parents are allowed to bring car seats, infant-carrying seats and strollers as part of their carry-on allowance as long as the items can fit in the overhead compartment.
• Check with your credit card provider; most airlines have credit card programs that offer great perks, including free checked bags.
• For carry-on, keep your bag of toiletries separate and accessible. The Transportation Security Administration allows you to bring one quart-size ziplock bag through the checkpoint holding 3.4 ounces per container of liquids, aerosols, gels, creams and pastes.