41 Useful Tips for First Time Flyers: How to Prepare (2023) (2023)

Table of Contents
Table of contents 41 Useful First Flight Tips (2023) 1. Check the airline's baggage restrictions 2. Make your baggage identifiable 3. Place important travel documents in the folder 4. Exchange currency in advance First-time flyer tips: Travel essentials to pack 5. Bring a portable luggage scale 6. Stay hygienic 7. Pack a portable battery 8. Invest in a travel pillow 9. Pack a light jacket 10. Bring headphones 11. Stay hydrated 12. Bring snacks for provisions 13. Personal Entertainment What to do the day before departure 14. Check in online in advance 15. Send flight information to family 16. Take a screenshot of the ticket 17. Know your backup plan TSA tips for first-time flyers 18. Wear a comfortable outfit 19. Shoes that are easy to take off 20. Put liquids in a plastic bag 21. Check TSA policies 22. Put valuables in personal bag 23. Keep your ID handy but secure What should a beginner do at the airport? 24. Arrive early 25. Check the departure board 26. Use the toilet before boarding First-time flyer tips: How to board the plane 27. Listen to announcements 28. Get out the boarding pass 29. Hand baggage in the overhead compartment 30. Personal bag under the seat 31. Phone in flight mode 32. Proper airport and travel etiquette What to Expect Flying for the first time Time to take off altitude Prepare for landing Is the first flight scary? 5 tips for first-time flyers with anxiety 33. Simple reminders 34. Listening to music 35. Read a book 36. Talk to your neighbor 37. Ask for help What to do when the plane lands 38. Remain seated 39. Turn off Airplane mode only when… 40. Wait to pack your bags 41. Knowing where to go Summary: First-time Flyer Tips (2023) More travel resources Videos

Whether it's your first time flying with family, friends, or alone, navigating an airport can be both incredibly exciting and stressful. However, the most important thing to remember is that we have all been there at some point in our lives and it will be okay! To ensure your experience is as smooth as possible,Here are my top 41 first-time flyer tips for everything from finding flights toget off the plane at the final destination.

Table of contents

  • 41 Useful First Flight Tips (2023)
    • Travel essentials to pack
    • What to do the day before departure
    • TSA tips for first-time flyers
    • What should a beginner do at the airport?
    • How to get on the plane
    • What to Expect Flying for the first time
    • Is the first flight scary?
    • Tips for first-time flyers with anxiety
    • What to do when the plane lands
  • Summary: Top Tips for First Time Flyers (2023)

41 Useful First Flight Tips (2023)

The first step in any airport trip is booking a flight. Two flight search engines that I highly recommend areHimmelsscannerAndStudentUniversum.

If you haven't heard of StudentUniverse, you can read itmy in-depth review of StudentUniverseto help you decide whether to use them.

1. Check the airline's baggage restrictions

When looking for the best airline tickets, it is important to always check the airline's baggage policy. Being aware of the restrictions and making sure your baggage is compliant in terms of both size dimensions and weight restrictions can help you avoid any unwanted surprises or charges.

When I first traveled solo I didn't think about it because I really thought there were universal sizes for carry-on and checked suitcases. I mean you think that would be the case!? Unfortunately, I found out through a surprise additional fee of $100 that this wasn't the case.

So do yourself a favor and check baggage restrictions and weigh your bag at home!Trust me, it's better to spend a few minutes looking for a measuring tape and scale in the back drawer than to give the airport staff your credit card 🙃

PROFITIPP:If you are flying with more than one airline, be sure to read the baggage policies ofeveryAirline! Budget airlines are notoriously strict!

Quick Guide to Baggage Sizes

  • Personal bag or item:Typically a small purse, purse, or school-sized backpack that can be stowed under the front seat. There is no weight limit for your personal baggage unless otherwise specified by the airline.
  • Hand luggage or hand luggage: A smaller suitcase or duffel bag that can be stowed in the overhead lockers near your seat. Some airlines do not have carry-on weight restrictions, while others have strict restrictions. Above all, remember that you must be able to lift the bag into the overhead compartment yourself.
  • Checked Baggage or Checked Baggage:Large suitcases or pieces of luggage that need to be weighed and checked in by airport staff. You will not have access to checked baggage throughout the flight nor will you take checked baggage through airport security. Most airlines have a weight limit of 23kg or 50lbs for checked baggage.
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2. Make your baggage identifiable

On your carry-on and any checked bags, I recommend adding aSuitcase tagthat has your contact details. These are helpful when separated from your baggage and can be great identifiers when collecting your checked baggage from baggage claim.

With all the madness in the travel industry, it's time for a little travel hackApple Air-Tagin your checked bag. Airports have been in absolute chaos lately, so this is one way to get the most up-to-date information on the whereabouts of your luggage.

If the airport claims to have lost your checked baggage, you can show them the location of your baggage with the Apple Air Tag, which can speed up the recovery process.

If you don't have a dedicated luggage tag or Apple Air Tag, and don't plan to buy one, I suggest putting a piece of paper with your contact information in your luggage.

3. Place important travel documents in the folder

One travel tip I wish I'd discovered when I was a first-time aviator is to use a school binder to keep all my important documents together.

I always print out my accommodation documents, travel insurance documents, flight information and all other documents and put them in a nice folder. While it may seem silly to do this when we have smartphones, if you are in a foreign country and don't have stable WiFi, your phone can be unreliable.

Additionally, one of the best things you can do to ease airport anxiety is to be organized and know where things are.Remember, success favors the prepared...and gets organizedD!

4. Exchange currency in advance

If you are traveling abroad to a place that uses a different currency than your home currency, I strongly recommend converting the currency at least 3 weeks before your trip.

This is because exchange rates at airports and abroad are usually worse than at your home bank. And even in the age of travel credit cards, you should always have some cash with you for emergencies. In addition, small traders and taxi drivers often only accept cash.

In general, I recommend getting $100 worth of foreign currency per week of travel. When you request money from your bank, it usually takes between 3 days and 2 weeks to arrive in the mail. So take your time!

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First-time flyer tips: Travel essentials to pack

If it's a few days before your trip, it's time to start packing! Here are some essential travel essentials that I bring with me on every flight and encourage you to do so.

5. Bring a portable luggage scale

It's all too easy these days to accidentally pack too much or take home a few too many travel souvenirs. Something that has been absolutely life changing for my travels is carrying a portable electric luggage scale.

They're super light, easy to use, and help you stay in control. I find them particularly worthwhile if you want to visit multiple destinations in a single trip. Gone are the days of extra fees for overweight bags.

👉 Click here to buy the $12Portable electric luggage scaleI like to use it and can only recommend it.

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6. Stay hygienic

With COVID-19 and new variants appearing seemingly every 6 months, it's better to be safe than sorry.I recommend bringing a small travel-size bottle of hand sanitizer along with a packet of antibacterial wipes.

Airports and planes are pretty dirty with the amount of foot traffic they get. So I like to get some rest by wiping down the seat shell before I put something of my own on it. Additionally, hand sanitizer is a way to clean up if you have a window seat and don't want to bother your seat neighbors to go to the bathroom.

7. Pack a portable battery

One thing I've found incredibly useful over the years is a portable battery for my phone.

It happened so many times that I showed up at the airport and the outlets weren't working. In turn, I spend all my time doing my best to save my phone's battery. Also, some aircraft do not offer you outlets, e.g. B. those with shorter flights.

The worst thing is arriving at an unfamiliar destination and not sure if you have enough battery power to reach your accommodation. Eliminate the added stress and fear of low batteries by investing in a good portable battery.

👉 Buy nowportable batterythat I use and recommend. You get two for the price of one so it's a bargain in my humble opinion 🤠

8. Invest in a travel pillow

So for those longer flights, or really any flight where you might fall asleep, it's worth investing in a travel pillow.

I used to take 10 hour flights without a travel pillow and even if I had a window seat I would wake up feeling like death. Sometimes my neck would still hurt for a few days after the flight because my head was thrown forward so many times. Lesson learned is to spare yourself the pain and get a travel pillow.

Your neck will thank you later, and you can use it for car rides, train rides, or pretty much anywhere you might fall asleep.

9. Pack a light jacket

Even if you are traveling to a hot and sunny destination, I recommend always carrying a light jacket in your personal bag or backpack. Airplanes get pretty cold when they turn up the air conditioning.

If nothing else they make a decent pillow if you don't have a proper travel pillow. That being said, your jacket probably can't keep you warm and serve as a comfortable pillow.

10. Bring headphones

One of my top tips for first-time flyers is to always bring headphones or earplugs. If you have noise-cancelling headphones, that's even better.

On almost every flight there is inevitably at least one screaming child who makes it difficult to fall asleep. At times like these you want something to deaden the noise, especially if you're already terrified of flying.

Recently I was on a flight I'm not kidding, there were 30 kids under 5 on the flight. Literally more than a quarter of the passengers on the flight were young children. Never in my life have I been so grateful to have erasing headphones.

Even when I'm not trying to sleep, headphones that block out the outside noise of the plane itself make the flight experience more enjoyable. So I highly recommend packing something to block out the noise.

(Video) FLYING FOR FIRST TIME? All our tips for flying, how to prepare for a flight & traveling to airport
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11. Stay hydrated

A reusable water bottle is a must. One of the effects of flying and being at high altitude is dehydration. Therefore, it is important to make an effort to stay hydrated.

You cannot go through security with liquids in your water bottle, so make sure you drink or empty everything before entering the airport. After you go through security, I recommend finding a water fountain right away to refill your bottle. That way you won't forget it later and can relax when you reach your boarding gate.

12. Bring snacks for provisions

Another tip for first-time flyers is to bring some snacks. For example, I always try to pack some granola bars, a pod of crackers, and some mint mentos to chew on.

Snacks also come in handy when your flight is delayed and you don't want to pay for overpriced food at the airport!

Just remember that international flights may require you to declare some groceries. If you bring something that isn't allowed into the country, like fresh fruit, you'll likely be thrown away by border control.

NOTE:Don't forget to pack some gum to open your ears during the flight!

13. Personal Entertainment

Since not all flights offer inflight entertainment, I recommend bringing something to help pass the time. For example, I like to download 5 or 6 shows from Netflix and an audio book to my phone at home.

Do not rely on airport WiFi to download large files as airport WiFi is often slow or has a time limit before you are asked to pay. The worst is when you can connect to the wifi but have no internet access so it feels like quite a fuss.

To avoid the hassles of airport wifi, just assume there isn't one, and that way you'll be pleasantly surprised if it actually works!

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What to do the day before departure

If it's the day before your flight, I have four first-time tips to make sure everything's ready to go!

14. Check in online in advance

A few days before your flight departure, your flight provider will often send you an email reminder or two. At this point, I recommend setting some sort of alarm or reminder on your calendar that goes off exactly 24 hours before departure.

Most airlines allow you to check in 24 hours before departure, and you definitely want to check in as soon as possible. This results in three possible advantages:

First of all, you will be given an entry time that is favorable for the move. Typically, passengers are assigned boarding groups (or zones) based on award status and check-in time. The earlier you check in, the earlier you can board.

An earlier boarding time also meansYou'll find it easier to settle into your seat and find space for your carry-on luggage in the overhead bins.

If you are in one of the last boarding groups, overhead compartment space will be limited and you may be forced to stow your carry-on bag somewhere far from your seat. Retrieving your carry-on baggage, on the other hand, can be tedious and take more time.

The last and best reason to check in early is thatYou may be able to select your preferred seat at no additional cost. Usually you have to pay extra if you want a specific seat.

However, a small travel tip is that if you check in immediately, some airlines let passengers without seat preferences select their desired seat. Knowing where you'll be seated can help reduce stress and anxiety, especially if you're someone who knows they'll want an aisle or window seat.

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15. Send flight information to family

After you've checked in, it's always a good idea to send your flight information to a trusted family member or friend. That way someone outside of your tour group will know what your general travel plans are and where you should be roughly at certain times.

For example, I always email my parents my flight number and departure/arrival time for every flight I take. Even if they can't really do anything if something unexpected happens, at least they can track the flight and stay informed. Plus, knowing that someone is watching out for you can just add an extra layer of peace.

✈️ PROTIP: I recommend the Notion app for travel planning because it allows you to seamlessly share your travel information with people you trust. In addition, the app is updated in real time, so everyone involved can see changes to your itinerary.

16. Take a screenshot of the ticket

Another first flight tip is to always take a screenshot of your ticket. If the airline sends you your boarding pass online, be sure to take a screenshot to make sure you have it handy in case you can't load your email.

Keep in mind that airport WiFi can be finicky and you don't want to accidentally hold up lines.

17. Know your backup plan

The last thing you should do the day before you leave is make a backup plan. In the hopefully unlikely event that something happens, e.g. For example, if your flight is canceled or severely delayed after you arrive at the airport, come up with an action plan.

It can be as simple as jotting down the customer service number on your phone or getting settled at the airport. Just knowing what the first step is, in case something unexpected happens, will help you stay calm as you evaluate your next step.

TSA tips for first-time flyers

Part of the airport security process involves examining your body, as well as examining the items in your carry-on baggage and personal bag. In my opinion, this is the most feared and stressful part of flying. There are usually a lot of people there, TSA agents often yell, and I just want to get through as soon as possible.

To ensure you're prepared and to minimize the chance of being yelled at by TSA employees, here are some first-time flyer tips on what to do before heading to the airport.

18. Wear a comfortable outfit

First, you should make sure you are wearing something that is comfortable to wear for the duration of your flight. Whether jeans, shorts or sweats, the main thing is that you feel comfortable in them, especially if you have a long-haul flight.

Nobody likes to sit in the same position for a long time wearing restrictive clothing. And if you want to dress to impress someone waiting for you on the other side, remember that you can always change in a bathroom after disembarking at your destination.

(Video) 75 Airplane & Airport Travel Hacks ✈️ | Flying Tips for 2021!

Another thing to consider is that the more accessories you carry, the longer it will take you through TSA security. I usually keep it simple and opt for a couple of sweatshirts, a regular t-shirt and a light jacket.

19. Shoes that are easy to take off

Similar to the point above, it is recommended to wear shoes that are easy to remove.

At almost every airport I've been to, TSA employees will ask you to remove your shoes before going through their giant scanners. You don't want to get nervous about the people behind you getting impatient while they wait for you to take off your shoes.

I also highly recommend wearing socks with whatever shoes you choose.If you wear sandals you just know you have to walk around barefoot and airport floors are absolutely disgusting.

Also, there's a good chance at least one person will step on or roll over your shoes, so keep that in mind if you decide to wear your best sneakers.

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20. Put liquids in a plastic bag

Part of the TSA policy states that all liquids, like shampoo, lotion, and contact solution, must fit in a quart-sized plastic bag. Additionally, each individual item must not exceed 3.4 fluid ounces or 100 ml.

To speed up the process, I recommend packing all your liquids in a quart-sized clear plastic bag before heading to the airport. If you wait with it until the airport, you run the risk of having anything that doesn't fit in your pocket thrown away or confiscated.

I also suggest conserving your liquidPocket near the top of your personal pocket. You don't want to unpack everything in your carry-on or spend an inordinate amount of time looking for your fluid bag.

👉 PRO TIP: I highly recommend using itTSA Compliant Reusable Travel Bottlesfor storing shampoo, conditioner and cleaning products. They help reduce plastic waste and are awesome!

21. Check TSA policies

Make sure you don't accidentally take anything illegal on the plane. If you do this, your baggage will be separated from the rest of your baggage and inspected by a TSA agent.

Depending on how busy the airport is, this can take some time. It's always better to just show up prepared and get through security as quickly as possible. If you're not sure if your baggage is TSA compliant, check itThe TSA's extensive list of what's allowed and what's not.

22. Put valuables in personal bag

One of the last things you need to do before heading to the airport is to make sure you put all your valuables in your personal bag. For example, I keep my laptop, wallet, phone, tablet, camera, chargers, and hydration bag in my personal backpack.

Your personal bag is the safest place for your valuables as you are unlikely to ever lose sight of them.

23. Keep your ID handy but secure

At the airport you will normally be asked to present your ID card and passport (for international travel) at least three times.

Two first flight tips that will save time and help you be prepared are to keep your ID in an easily accessible place and in a safe place.By that I mean stashing those essential items in a pocket that is only accessible from your personal pocket.

So you always know where your ID and passport are and don't have to stand in line and rummage in your bag for your things.

Likewise, you don't want to keep anything of great value in a small pocket on the outside of your bag that can be easily opened by someone standing behind you. As someone whose wallet has been stolen in Paris, always be vigilant towards airport thieves and people attempting to steal bags.

What should a beginner do at the airport?

24. Arrive early

It's finally time to go to the airport! Allow adequate time to go through the airport process and security check, especially if you are departing from a major airport.

The general rule is to arrive 2 hours earlier for domestic flights and 3 hours earlier for international flights.

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Upon arrival at the airport…

If you're checking in a large piece of baggage, look for the check-in counter of the airline you're flying with. Go there so they can weigh your bag, check your passport and ticket, and check in your bag.

From there, or if you are not traveling with checked baggage, head towards the airport security checkpoint. There are usually large signs directing where to go, but if in doubt just ask the airport staff. They are there to help you, so don't be afraid!

When you arrive at security there is always a member of staff to check your ticket and ID (or passport).

As previously mentioned, TSA agents will ask you to remove liquids and large electronic devices such as laptops or tablets from your baggage. You will also be asked to remove your shoes, belts and hats. Remove pretty much everything until you're down to a shirt, pants, and socks—or a single layer of clothing.

25. Check the departure board

Once you've cleared security and all your belongings are safely back in your bags, check the departure board. This will give you the most up-to-date information about your flight and which gate you will have to wait at.

After that, just follow the signs to your gate and look for a water fountain to fill up your water bottle!

Once you've found your gate, you should continue to check your flight status regularly. Sometimes your gate number changes at the last minute. Most of the time they will make an announcement when this happens, but not always.

NOTE:Make sure you know your flight number.

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26. Use the toilet before boarding

About 20 minutes before boarding, I recommend going to the bathroom before boarding your flight. Especially towards the end of a long flight, you definitely want to avoid using the cramped bathroom on the plane.

To put it lightly, they can become less than ideal after more than 50 people have used them. Also, you don't want to have to disturb the other people in your row when they're sleeping.

First-time flyer tips: How to board the plane

27. Listen to announcements

Listen to the boarding announcement about an hour before departure. The exact time when boarding begins should be listed on your ticket, but depending on whether there are delays, this time may change.

28. Get out the boarding pass

When you start hearing announcements, this is a good time to get out your boarding pass and ID (or passport). Make sure you know your entry group or zone number.

Airport gate agents begin calling boarding groups or zones forward. If you don't get in line, you will be asked to step aside or go to the back.

(Video) Top 10 Hidden Tricks To Book CHEAP Flights in 2023

29. Hand baggage in the overhead compartment

When boarding the plane, first place your personal item on your seat before attempting to place your carry-on baggage in the overhead compartment. This will hopefully prevent you from accidentally bumping into those around you with your personal bag.

Then store your hand luggage in such a way that it takes up as little space as possible. This usually means the wheels first and making sure the upright handle is facing you.

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30. Personal bag under the seat

When you have taken care of your hand luggage, place your personal bag under the front seat.

Sometimes people can bring a purse and a small backpack as "one" personal item. In this case, make sure that both fit under the front seat. You don't want anything loose in your lap at launch because it's a safety hazard.

31. Phone in flight mode

After the doors close and the plane starts moving, put your phone in airplane mode.

This is done as a safety precaution as our phones emit electronic signals that interfere with the aircraft. Additionally, Airplane mode helps extend your phone's battery life, which is always a good thing!

From there, follow instructions from your flight crew, who will explain all applicable safety measures.

32. Proper airport and travel etiquette

As a general reminder, it is important to be respectful of other people's spaces throughout the airport process. Everyone feels all sorts of emotions, so just pay attention to people's personal space bubbles.

For example, split the armrests and try to keep your body parts in your seat. For those with long hair, make sure your hair isn't blocking the screen on the back of your chair. Essentially, just be polite and friendly.

What to Expect Flying for the first time

Aside from what I've already mentioned, there are a few things to expect during takeoff and your actual flight.

When the doors close, the cabin crew walks down the aisle, closes the overhead bins, checks that everything is properly stowed, and makes sure the passengers' seat belts are fastened. The pilot and co-pilot introduce themselves simultaneously and give you general flight information.

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Time to take off

Then, as the plane approaches the runway, the plane turns off all main lights and finally announces, "Prepare for takeoff." When this happens, there is usually a loud rumble from the engines starting up.

After a few moments, the plane accelerates rapidly and begins to climb into the air. Your ears may be blocked and you may feel slightly pushed back in your seat.


As the plane reaches its cruising altitude, the pilot makes a few announcements, and shortly thereafter the flight attendants begin offering drinks and a small snack.

Depending on how long your flight is, you may be given a meal or two. In general, a meal is included on a long-haul flight (6 hours or more).

If you have any dietary restrictions, make sure you make a meal request in your flight portal on the airline's website beforehand. This gives the airline time to prepare you a special meal.

Another thing to note is that there can be slight or even a decent amount of turbulence during flight. This is 100% normal and happens on almost every flight. The turbulence is caused by the aircraft encountering strong, erratic wind currents.

Do your best to remain calm and make sure your seat belt is on.

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Prepare for landing

About 45 minutes before the plane lands, the pilot usually makes an announcement, "Prepare for landing." At this point, return your seats to their upright position, fold up your trays, and stow any large electronic devices.

In terms of feelings, there may be occasional but brief moments of pitting during the descent of the plane. In addition, your ears can also become clogged again.

When the plane lands, the plane may jump over the runway and wobble a little. However, this should only take a few seconds as the plane decelerates quickly.

After landing, the plane slowly moves to your arrival gate.

Is the first flight scary?

Unfortunately, the answer to this question depends entirely on what type of person you are. Some people find the experience exciting when thinking about where they're going, while others hate the concept of flying in a metal tube.

I will say that even after visiting 20+ countries and 50+ flights, I am still worried about going through the airport process. I hate being yelled at or accidentally doing something wrong, so navigating an airport in a foreign country can be stressful. That being said, I don't think the physical act of flying is scary.

The only thing you need to know is that you are likely to feel all sorts of emotions and whatever you are feeling is totally fine.

5 tips for first-time flyers with anxiety

If you're particularly anxious, here are 5 first time tips to help you cope with the anxiety.

33. Simple reminders

When you're panicking or feeling stressed, try to remember simple facts.

For example, the pilots are incredibly well trained, having literally over ten thousand hours of training behind them. When something unexpected happens, they are trained to assess the situation and respond appropriately.

Likewise, the aircraft itself and its equipment are regularly inspected. You have no reason not to trust the device

Finally, remember that flying is the safest mode of transportation. You are safer in the hands of these awesome pilots than driving your own car to the grocery store or traveling on public transport.

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34. Listening to music

As I mentioned before, I like to calm down during the flight by listening to music. Blocking out the outside noise on an airplane with headphones is an effective way to distract your mind.

Escape into the world of music and focus on the lyrics of a song instead of your surroundings.

(Video) Do NOT Make These Travel Mistakes (Carry-On, TSA Line, First Time Flying)

35. Read a book

Alternatively, I also recommend listening to an audio book or reading a physical book. Both can distract you by making you think about the information at hand instead of where you are right now.

36. Talk to your neighbor

If you prefer not to be alone with your thoughts, try to strike up a conversation with the person seated next to you. Focus on them instead of yourself and what's going on in your head.

Plus, you already know that you have at least one thing in common with them: you're both heading for the same destination! Ask them why they are going there or where their final destination is if they are changing onto another flight.

Nine times out of ten people love to talk about themselves and by putting yourself out there you give yourself a chance to connect with so many wonderful people.

37. Ask for help

If you feel sick or can't control your anxiety, don't hesitate to ask for help. People are often good and want to see that you are doing well.

Remember that flight attendants are trained to assist you in any way they can and have likely helped many passengers with a fear of flying. You can trust them to support you when you panic or have problems.

What to do when the plane lands

After the plane has landed safely and makes its way to your arrival gate, the pilot will make some final announcements about your arrival destination. These are a few tips that everyone should remember, not just first-time flyers.

38. Remain seated

When the aircraft reaches your arrival gate, the seat belt sign will turn off, indicating it is safe to unbuckle your seat belt. In that case, I urge you to remain seated.

You will probably see a lot of people around you who immediately get up and start getting their hand luggage from the overhead compartments. Please don't do this. It will slow down the disembarkation process and you will likely be asked to sit down by the flight crew.

During this waiting period, airport staff securely attaches the aircraft to the tunnel that connects the aircraft to the airport.

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39. Turn off Airplane mode only when…

While you wait, you can disable airplane mode on your phone when traveling domestically.

In the event that you are traveling internationally, I recommend waiting until you can switch to stable WiFi before disabling Airplane mode. This is because your phone will immediately start searching for signal and WiFi networks to connect to. This uses mobile data.

If you are in a foreign country, there is a good chance that you will be charged extra for using data abroad. For example, I know my phone plan costs $40 a day when using international cellular data. Of course, this can get expensive quickly, so be careful.

There are only two instances where I recommend turning Airplane mode off while on a plane in a foreign country. First, if you know your phone plan includes international data, or you can afford international data with your cellphone plan. The second case is when you have received a special SIM card that is designed for the foreign country or countries you are visiting.

40. Wait to pack your bags

Usually the flight crew does not make announcements over the speaker when to start packing. Instead, they just let the first few lines know if it's okay.

From there, the immediate line behind the first few will follow suit, slowly getting their bags. This process continues to the rear of the aircraft.

I suggest waiting your turn to get off the plane to get your bag. If you try to get it earlier, you run the risk of accidentally bumping someone with your bag. Just try to be patient and remember to pay extra attention to your surroundings.

41. Knowing where to go

After getting off the plane, you may not be sure where to go. Don't worry, I was there too. Here are a few first-time flyer tips to help guide you.

If in doubt, first check your itinerary to see which of the following situations applies to you.

connecting flight

For connecting flights, check a nearby departure board to find out which gate to go to next. If your flight was delayed or you are not sure which direction to fly, ask the airport staff for help. Again, they're there to help you, so remember to be kind and patient!

NOTE:In the event that you cross international borders, e.g. B. If you're flying from the US, changing planes in Canada and flying to Paris, you may need to go through a different security checkpoint.

domestic flights

If you have flown domestically and are at your final destination, follow the baggage claim signs to collect your checked baggage. There is often a sign that reads flight numbers and indicates which conveyor belongs to which flight.

After you've collected your checked baggage, or if you don't have any, you're ready to leave the airport!

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International flights

If you were on an international flight, you must clear immigration and customs before you can reach baggage claim. Immigration and customs vary slightly from country to country, but that's generally how they both work.

Immigration affects people moving between countries. An immigration officer will check your passport, ask some questions about the details of your trip and may ask you to fill out some forms. Think of it as a mini-interview with an extremely high chance of success.

In contrast, customs is all about the items you are transporting. They will state what you brought into the country and answer some questions. Depending on the country's regulations, you can continue on your merry way, or customs officials may ask you to fill out additional forms to declare some goods.

After clearing immigration and customs, you can proceed to baggage claim to collect your checked baggage.

After that, or if you haven't checked your bags, breathe a sigh of relief that you've made it and can finally leave the airport! YAY!

Summary: First-time Flyer Tips (2023)

I know that figuring out the entire airport process can be overwhelming and scary at times, but hopefully with my wealth of first flight tips, you'll be able to fly with confidence.

Remember that you have this and success favors the prepared. When in doubt, just ask for help because that's what airport staff are there for. With this in mind, I wish you a smooth airport journey and safe journey!

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