Tips for planning your next trip
Airport screeners keep track of troublemakers? The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) maintains a database of travelers who threaten screeners or display excessive anger. Database information may be shared with government agencies, airlines and rail and bus systems. This was reported in USA Today.
  • If your flight is canceled, while waiting in line at the ticket counter; make sure you have your travel consultant’s phone number and contact her/him. If your travel agency is not open be sure to have the airline 800 number and call them.
  • You can buy unclaimed/lost baggage at at deep discounts (80% below retail).
  • Short term airline-club passes are available from most US carriers.  This isn’t made public but day passes to private lounges are available for about $50/day (always ask for a free pass first) — well worth the price when facing a long delay.
  • Only drink bottled water on flights originating overseas.
  • Have some clothes packed for each family member in each suitcase.  If one bag is lost or delayed, each person will have at least one change of clothes until the missing luggage is found.
  • Do you travel with your pets?  Check out
  • Storing Suitcases?  If you are putting them away after a trip, put an unwrapped bar of soap in them and it will prevent them from getting that musty smell.
  • In the spring and fall, cruise lines send their ships to different parts of the world in order to take advantage of the seasons.  These are called repositioning cruises and they can be tremendous bargains (cruise lines do not advertise the discounts).
  • If you go on vacation for several days be sure and disconnect your automatic garage door opener.  This will prevent someone on the same frequency from opening it and preventing entry by a thief.
  • mountainsWould you like to make some money?  If yes, then board the plane last and if someone is in your seat you have a good chance of being compensated.  Make it clear that you are not going to be bought off cheaply.  No matter what you negotiate for, make sure the airline throws in a first class seat on the next flight out.
  • Missing and/or lost luggage is a particular nightmare for travelers. The following are some ideas that may prove helpful.
    1. Use the slide-in window about the size of a business card to provide a source for secondary identification (make sure the information is up to date).
    2. Do not list your home address (you don’t want thieves to know you are on vacation) but rather your business address or you can list our agency address.
    3. Put additional identification inside your luggage including a copy of your itinerary with instructions on how to contact you (make sure you do not have any credit card numbers on your travel itinerary).
    4. It is always a good idea to label everything of value that you are taking on vacation.
    5. To prevent someone from accidentally picking up your bag thinking it is theirs, tie a brightly colored ribbon on the handle.
    6. It is smart to not only tip, but be very friendly to the Skycap. This will go a long way in making sure your luggage is checked properly.
    7. Don’t leave the airport before completing the lost luggage report with the baggage agent. Be sure and get a phone number so you can follow up on what progress is being made.
  • Do you really need to take your wallet on vacation? Take one (or 2, max) credit card(s), a little cash and your ID. The point is, the less you take, the better. Make photocopies of everything you do take and store the copies separately. If you normally have joint credit card accounts with a traveling companion, then each traveler should carry a different card. That way, canceling one person’s card does not eliminate all credit card transactions. Advise you credit card company where you will be at.
  • Enjoy your trip and know that these heightened safety measures are for your protection and peace-of-mind.