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Airport Lifehacks for Your Next Flight

If air travel is a hassle for you, check out these airport lifehacks for your next flight. (You'll thank me later.)

By Leila ParkerPublished 6 years ago 5 min read

Air travel takes vacationing to a whole new level. There's no need to drive, and you can get to your destination quicker. However, new challenges arise when traveling by plane.

Everything from packing your luggage to getting through airport security swiftly can be a struggle. If you're sick and tired of obstacles and never quite being prepared as you should, no worries. Following the below airport lifehacks will help make your trip breezier the next time around.

Weigh your luggage at home to ensure you won't be charged extra.

When packing your luggage, if you're the type of person who packs everything you own, you'll want to follow this airport hack.

Assuming you don't want to pay extra for an add-on, make sure you weigh your luggage at home long before heading off to the airport. This can not only save you money but also save you the hassle of either eliminating something from your luggage or paying extra when you're already at airport security for a soon-to-be flight.

Take a picture of your parking spot, or use your smart phone to track your vehicle.

Especially if you're flying at a large airport, you'll want to take note of where you parked your vehicle. Through a long and tiring flight and trip, you'll want to make sure you know exactly where you parked when you come back, as surely, you'll be antsy to get home, and not to mention, long forgotten where you parked.

Taking or picture (or better yet a video if the parking lot is huge) is one way to ensure you remember where you parked. Many smart phones also allow you to drop a pin on its integrated map or even have a "Find my Car" app, so you can find your vehicle effortlessly by following a map or GPS.

If you don't have the latter apps or options, consider downloading one of these apps to help you locate your vehicle, such as:

  • ParkMe Parking
  • Find My Car Smarter
  • QuickPark
  • Waze
  • BestParking

Opt for travel-sized containers to store your products to comply with TSA rules.


Airport security may seem like a nuisance when it comes to liquids, bottles, and containers, but it's all for a good reason.

Instead of trying to sneak in items that go against TSA rules, prepare ahead of time. Many convenience stores offer travel versions of your favorite products. If a product you use isn't offered in travel-form, many stores sell travel-sized, empty bottles and containers you can fill yourself.

Also consider using contact lens cases for storing tiny amounts of lotion or makeup, for instance.

Buy a portable phone charger.

Probably among one of the top airport hacks, or really general traveling hacks, is to opt for a portable phone charger. In the 21st-century, most of us are glued to our smartphones. Unfortunately, even for the phones with good battery life, we all know how quickly they die.

Especially for longer flights, you won't want to skip out on a portable phone charger that will allow you to charge your phone from an external battery.

This is important not just for entertainment purposes but most importantly for when you get off your flight and need to contact friends or family letting them know you arrive safely or if you need to use your phone's GPS to locate your next stop.

Best of all, portable phone chargers are affordable with an average price of about $25 and can be purchased from Amazon.

Bring an empty water bottle, and fill it up after you pass the security line.

Most are aware that airport security are finicky with liquids, especially water bottles, for security purposes. Better safe than sorry, but no worries, you can still find a way to bring water on the plane without having to whip out $3 for a bottle of water at an airport vending machine or shop.

Just bring an empty water bottle, and fill it up in the bathroom or at a drinking fountain in the airport after passing security. This is also a great time-saver rather than having to track down who's selling water bottles and getting through lines to purchase one.

Wear some of your luggage prior to having it weighed.


If you're worried your luggage weighs more than it should, throw on some of the clothes in your luggage prior to getting to airport security. Opt for the heaviest articles of clothing such as jackets. If you have heavier shoes in your luggage, swap them out for what you're currently wearing. You can also layer shirts or pants if necessary.

Wearing some of the clothing in your luggage isn't such as a bad idea anyway as it can provide extra warmth if your airplane is chilly.

Best of all, airport security can't bust you for wearing extra clothing, but they can charge you extra for heavy luggage. (Clearly, you can see which option is best if you're hoping to save money.)

Know how to get free Wi Fi at your airport.

If access to Wi Fi is an absolute must for you, it's important that you're aware of how to access it at your airport. From this Google Maps link, you can quickly spot which airports have Wi Fi and what their passwords are without needing to find a staff member who can give it to you. Google Maps sure comes in handy!

This airport hack is potent if you're a busy business owner or are in dire need of using your Internet for any other reason. This will also be helpful if your flight gets delayed, and you're in need of entertainment during the wait.

Use an MP3 player for all your music needs, not your phone.

You might be thinking, what about airport lifehacks for music lovers? As simple as it sounds, make sure you opt for an MP3 player for all your music needs rather than listening to music from your phone, tablet, or other all-in-one portable device.

This way, you have 1) hundreds of songs stored on one device not taking up space on your phone and 2) battery life reserved on your phone. After all, phone storage fills up quickly, and even with a full charge prior a flight, your phone's battery can get eaten up quickly with all your apps and other goodies using energy.

Find the best seat on


If you're hoping to get the best amenities or the best seat on your flight, especially if hoping to travel via business class, you can do so via SeatGuru.

From SeatGuru, you can type in your airport and flight number to discover the best seats based on comfort, size of the seats, ability to recline, and other similar information. You can also view other flyers' images and comments regarding the seating.

Check-in and baggage guidelines, rules regarding infants and pets, and information regarding minor flyers can also be provided.

Out of all of these airport lifehacks, it should be said that nothing is more important than the proper research and preparation regarding TSA regulations and specific airport rules. What may work for one traveler may not work for all.


About the Creator

Leila Parker

Newly graduated Industrial-Organizational Psychologist. I'm a cyclist who works, thinks and writes about workplace culture, behavior and self-motivation.

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