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If there is anything a bit off-putting about going on vacation, I’d say it’s time spent at the airport and an airplane. I find it really frustrating to spend hours at an airport waiting to board a flight and another number of hours flying to the destination. It may not be entirely the fault of the airplane or airport, but simply my perception. Over time, I’ve identified a few best airport travel hacks every traveler should know that have really helped me in my travels.

Airport Travel Hacks 01 – Get free wifi by sitting outside the airport lounge

Airport Hack Use wifi outside airport lounge
Airport Hack – To Use wifi outside the airport lounge

This is one of the ultimate airport hacks every traveler should know. Not every ordinary traveler had the privilege of accessing an airline’s lounge at the airport. I typically am a budget traveler, so the economy class is how I usually travel. But, this secret travel hack has made me come as close to a lounge as I can. If you can’t access the lounge, you can still get near it and poach the free wifi. Now that’s something good to know, especially when you want to get connected at the airport.

Airport Travel Hacks 02 – Use the USB ports on the back of TVs

airport hack use tv usb port for charding phone
airport hack to use a tv USB port for charging a phone

If you want to charge your phone and simply can’t find a charging station, all you need to do is look for a TV. The airport has many TVs and it’s going to be easy to find one. Once you find a TV, charge your phone using the USB port at the back of it. Remember this as one of the ultimate airport hacks every traveler should know

Airport Travel Hacks 03 – Choose the best airport for your layover

airport hacks Singapore Airport Worlds best
Singapore – Worlds best Airport

I know this option is not in your control, but if you do have some control over it, it’s a lifesaver. Layovers are some of the worst experiences of flying to me and really drain me out. However, when I got to know that I did get a choice of choosing the airport for my layover, I was elated. I suggest you also make the most of the opportunity if you get it. Some airports are great for layovers, with several entertainment and dining options available to you. I find the Changi Airport in Singapore, Dubai International Airport, and Vancouver International Airport to be some of the best airport options for layovers.

Airport Travel Hacks 04 – Download the airline’s app on your phone

airport hacks waiting area
A Man making use of airline’s app on his phone

Another thing I hate about airports and flying is the sudden changes in boarding information and the need to constantly keep an eye on the departure board. Now what I do is, download the airline’s official app so that I’ll be notified of any changes and boarding information. It gives me the freedom to walk around the airport and enjoy my time.

Secret Airport Hacks 05 – Exercise before going to the airport

airport hacks exercise before airport travel
airport travel hacks to exercise before travel

I know this may not sound like the thing you do before flying off to another destination. However, I’ve personally felt this secret travel hack works great on me. If possible, I do try to catch some exercise time before I head off to the airport. I’ve noticed it makes it easier for me to fall asleep once I’m on the flight. It also keeps me stress-free and in a better mood despite all of the hassle I have to go through at some airports.

Airport Travel Hacks 06 – Empty your water bottle before the security check

airport hacks Empty your water bottle before the security check
Empty water bottle before security check

It’s a well-known fact that you can’t take liquids through the security check at the gates. However, you can carry an empty bottle with you and get it filled up once you’re in departures. I fill it up before every flight because it’s important to stay hydrated. The air inside the plane really makes you, so you need to drink lots of water.

Airport Travel Hacks 07 – Turn left at the security checkpoint

airport hacks airport security check turn left
airport security check travel hacks

This is one of the best airport tips for first-time flyers. More people instinctively move towards the right side at the security, because they prefer to turn towards their dominant hand. What I do is go left at the fork in the security line. Almost every time I travel, I’ve noticed it has fewer people than in the queue on the right.

Airport Travel Hacks 08 – Rebook canceled flights through the customer service line

airport hacks Rebook your flight via call centre instead of standing in a queue
airport hack rebook your flight via the call center instead of standing in a queue

If you realize that your flight has been canceled while you’re at the airport, the first thing you’d do is run to the counter. It’s not only you, almost everyone who was meant to go on that particular flight, will be there with you. One of my friends suggested this secret travel hack that worked out for him when he experienced a canceled flight during one of his trips. It’s to call the customer service line and rebook your flight. It will save you time and avoid waiting in a queue.

Top Airport Hacks 09 – Weigh your luggage at home

airport hacks Weight your luggage at home
Weight your luggage at home

This is another absolute lifesaving secret travel hack that I always do whenever I go on a tour. I have a set of digital luggage scales at home that I always use to check the weight of my bags before leaving for the airport. The last thing I want is to rummage my bag once it gets caught for being heavier than what is allowed. Another thing I fear about my bags being heavy is that I’d have to leave some of things back at the airport. To avoid both these situations, I find it best to weigh my bags beforehand.

Secret Travel Hack 10 – Add a name tag to your luggage

airport hacks luggage with handwritten name tag
luggage with a handwritten name tag

This may not seem like a secret travel hack at all as it is an obvious fact. However, you’d be surprised to know that it’s been overlooked. I know a lot of people who don’t want to go through the hassle of labeling their luggage thinking it’s not something you ought to waste your time on. Believe me, you need to add a name tag to your luggage. You could be rushing through security and need to submit your bag for inspection at the security. Since you’ve added a name tag for your bag, rest assured that it will find its way back to you fast. Remember this as it is one of the most important airport tips for first-time flyers.

Airport Tips for First-time flyer 11 – Conduct online check-in

airport hacks checkin for your flight using mobile app and reserve your seats
check-in for your flight using the mobile app and reserve your seats

Online checking is one secret travel hack that I say everyone should try. I mean… what’s better than saving a whole lot of time waiting in queues at the airport trying to check in. Airlines typically allow you to check in 24 hours before the flight. I’d personally recommend doing this as it saves a lot of time and allows you to check in from the comfort of your own home. It eliminates all the stress related to doing the same at the airport.

Airport Travel Hacks 12 – Choose the seat of your choice

airport hacks flight seat selection before flying online check in
flight seat selection before flying online check-in

I don’t know about others, but I feel reassured knowing the seat I am allocated on the flight. Recently, I checked online and managed to find a window seat on a fully-booked flight. It was the best feeling because I was traveling by myself, so the window seat was what I was eyeing. It’s always better to have a choice of your seat and know where you’ll be sitting. 

Airport Travel Hacks 13 – Note down your parking spot at the airport

airport car parking spot note down
airport car parking spot note down

We often get so preoccupied with flying to our destination that and become excited about the whole tour we are about to take. However, one thing I’ve noticed happening to a lot of people is that they tend to forget where they parked their cars about a week ago. It’s going to be a long and tiresome flight and you won’t want to be standing in the car park searching for your vehicle. Next time you drive your car to the airport, take a minute to mark the parking spot so that you can easily find it on your back from your tour.

Airport Tips for First-time flyer 14 – Be prepared for the security check

airport hacks airport security check
airport security check

I personally feel that the security check at the airport is the most stressful part of my journey. It’s the anticipation that kills you making you wonder if there’d be something you need to leave behind or what else could occur at the security check. However, I realized that a lot of trouble and worry and trouble could be prevented if I prepared for it beforehand. I remove my belt and watch while I am in the line, so that the security check would be a breeze once I reach the checking point.

Airport Travel Hacks 2023 – Wear slip-on’s

airport hacks flight travel wear slip-on comfortable
flight travel wear slip-on comfortable

Here’s another one of the best airport tips for first-time flyers. There are a lot of reasons why you should wear slip-ons to the airport. It’s easier to slip off and slip on when required at the security checkpoint. Slip-ons are also very comfortable and ideal for air travel, which could make you feel comfortable in many ways.

Airport Hacks 2023 – Stay hydrated

It’s essential to stay hydrated during your travels. Even while you fly and during a layover at the airport, you should drink water as much as possible. Air travel makes you dehydrated, which is why you need to drink water to stay hydrated. Also, avoid alcohol as it could make you dehydrated.

Airport Travel Hacks 17 – Don’t have a heavy meal

Flying on an airplane means you are stuck in a seat for hours on end, which makes your body hard to digest food that you’ve eaten. Therefore, it’s best to eat a light meal while you’re at the airport, to avoid feeling sluggish and uncomfortable during your flight.

Airport Travel Hacks 18 – Keep your ears open at the airport

airport hacks airport flight announcement gate change cancellation
airport flight announcement gate change cancellation

The airport staff constantly keeps updating travelers with regard to flight arrangements, changes, and other things. Therefore, always keep your ears open at the airport, so that you don’t miss any important information regarding your flight.

Airport Travel Hacks 19 – Pack your in-flight essentials in a small bag

Make sure you pack all of your in-flight essentials in one small bag. That way, once you are inside the flight you can throw your rucksack into the overhead compartment and have all of the essentials you might need during the flight, at hand.

Airport Travel Hacks 20 – Patiently wait to board

airport hacks flight boarding queue
flight boarding queue

Patience is important when flying, especially when boarding a flight. Wait in the queue until your seating is announced. Airplane staff typically start boarding from the back of the plane to the front. It is to avoid people standing up in the aisles and blocking the others’ way. Therefore, patiently wait for your turn to board the flight.

These 20 airport hacks have definitely helped me in enjoying my vacations and not worry about traveling and other procedures related to it. You should try these ultimate airport hacks every traveler should know when you’re traveling so that you also get to enjoy your vacation.


  • Imran AK

    Meet Imran AK, the globetrotting virtuoso of the senior travel scene. Whether it’s discovering hidden gems in far-flung locales or delving into the heart of ancient cultures, he revels in each journey as an exploration of life's rich tapestry.

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