18 Things You Have To Do Before Boarding An Aircraft

Check the luggage policy of the airline company you’re traveling with

One thing that we tend to forget, and wrongly think it’s the same at every airline company is the baggage allowance  policy, which is the number, and maximum luggage weight that you can check-in or carry-on on your flight. As for Egyptians who are known to be major over-packers make sure to check the airline baggage policy before even booking your flight tickets to avoid over-packing, and paying for overweight. (Photo courtesy: Katy Warner)

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Pack your essentials

Try your best not to over-pack -I know it’s difficult, but it only requires practice-, to be practical, and to only carry things that you will actually be using, and that’s for several reasons; 1. not to pay for extra-weight, 2. no matter how hard you try but at some point you will have to carry your bags which would give you shoulder, neck and back pain, and if you won’t carry them in any way be kind to those who will, 3. you won’t have any space for souvenirs and shopping.

Tip: If the baggage allowance is 2 bags, fill up one, but the second fold it inside the first -if it’s foldable- or fill 50% or less of each bag to have enough space for shopping. 

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To not carry liquids exceeding 100ml in your carry-on or sharp items

Another thing that we usually forget, do you recall this time when you begged, and shed a tear as they had to throw away your new shampoo, perfume, and hand-cream? Remember the rule of no more than a 100ml in your carry-on, and you are good to do. Also do not carry any sharp items, avoid scissors, swiss-knife, etc. (Photo courtesy: MarLeah Cole)

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Check the visa policy of your country of destination

Don’t you ever leave the country without knowing the visa policy of your country of destination from the embassy itself, even if it’s visa free, you never know maybe the visa policy has changed. (Photo courtesy: Daniel Greer)

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Call your credit/debit card bank

Whether you will be using your credit/debit card, or only leaving it for emergencies make sure before you leave to have them activated, and to inform your bank that you are traveling to X destination/s, along with your travel dates, as they tend to believe that your card was stolen whenever used out of the country of issuance in case of failure to inform the bank.

Tip: Make sure to have at least one card that has a smart chip, as in most countries they only accept cards with a smart chip. (Smart chip by Dennis S Hurd)

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Call your mobile network provider to activate roaming services

Though I am against using roaming services as they come pretty expensive, and am totally with buying a sim card from the country of destination, but having roaming services for emergencies is a must. Be aware that if you do not activate the roaming service before you leave, don’t expect to have it automatically activated, call your mobile network provider so they would activate the service, and tell you about the exact rates, so you wouldn’t have to pay one hell of an expensive bill. (Photo courtesy: Yuichi Shiraishi)

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Create an out-of-office message

Just so everybody is informed that you have no direct access to your mailbox, won’t be able to reply to their messages right away, and also to avoid unnecessary “anti-vacation” calls specially ones that involve work. (Photo courtesy: Shane Robinson)

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Hand-over your work

Even if your manager is living in “La La Land”, and not aware of the work in hand, don’t you dare to leave without handing over any pending, or on-going stuff, the last thing you want is receiving calls during your vacation from people asking about stuff related to work. (Photo courtesy: Kevin Harber)

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Deactivate Mobile Data

Unless you have a super duper mobile data plan avoid using mobile data at all cost, as it can cost you a fortune, no kidding “a fortune”. (Photo courtesy: Johan Larsson)

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Write important phone numbers in an agenda

I know you’d say but I have my mobile phone, but what if for some unfortunate reason you lost it? The last thing you want is not having contacts of anyone at all. So don’t leave home without writing all important numbers in an agenda -even if you know them by heart-, i.e. your mum’s, dad’s, husband’s, wife’s, siblings’, friends’ you will be traveling with, the place where you are staying, and emergency numbers in the country of destination. (Photo courtesy: me)

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Make sure you have enough cash and your credit cards are settled and activated

Yes credit and debit cards are way safer, and easier to carry, however for some “completely out of your hands” reason it could not work, or could not be accepted, in some developing countries it’s not a widely spread practice, and in some cases using cards can expose you to endless chances of fraud, therefore make sure to have enough cash on you, to have your credit cards settled, and activated. (Photo courtesy: fsecart)

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Pack maps, guide books and transportation schedule

This is very important, so you’d more or less know what you’d be up to during your trip, not get lost as much, and to lessen your chances of going to remote areas while not finding a ride to your desired destination. (Photo courtesy: Ed Yourdon)

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Know exactly how you will get from the airport to the place of stay at your country of destination

That’s very important so you’d understand what’s the best, quickest, most affordable yet safest option to reach your accommodation, and also to avoid; standing in long information desk queues, and going through the hassle of haggling with taxi drivers who would charge you more than you should. (Photo courtesy: Daniel Horacio Agostini)

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Check the weather forecast

That’s the first thing you should consider when planning for a trip, as depending on the forecast you’d choose the type of trip you are looking forward to, know whether it’s the best or worst time to visit, whether you’d better go ahead with your plans, postpone them, or choose another destination that offers more convenience, and to know exactly what to pack. (Photo courtesy: McBeth)

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Take care of accommodation reservations

That’s very important as well, to avoid the hassle of looking, waiting, and seeking good accommodation with availability and affordable deals. Book way in advance to get the best deals. (Photo by Shreveport-Bossier Convention and Tourist Bureau)

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Create an itinerary

You have to roughly know what your plans are, it won’t be a bible, but a helper to get you started. (Photo courtesy: Laura)

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Take a book, your tablet, or your laptop and earphones

In some flights you’d be unlucky enough to not have your own TV, and most of the times they would turn on a lame movie that’s 30 to 40 years old, if not a boring documentary about an uninteresting topic. It’s torturous when on a long haul flight, specially if you usually find hard time to sleep, your cure is a book, your tablet to read or to play games, or your laptop and earphones to watch a movie. (Photo courtesy: M.)

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Have your mobile phone fully charged

That’s something that I personally forget every time I travel, it starts by over-using my phone while waiting at the airport to kill the boredom, thinking that I would definitely find countless “functioning” electricity outlets at Cairo International Airport to recharge my phone -unfortunately it’s never the case-, so I end up with an uncharged phone, unable to communicate with anyone for several hours, and even worse if I am waiting for someone to pick me up from the airport. (Photo courtesy: r. nial bradshaw)

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Bonus yet not very necessary suggestions

Use the restroom

Well it’s just a suggestion as the restroom inside flights is a little bit too tight, stressful, usually very smelly, and not literally a “rest” room, but one that makes you feel extremely uncomfortable. (Photo courtesy: Sam Howzit)

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Chew gum

To get over air pressure, make sure to chew gum specially during take off, and landing. (Photo courtesy: Allen)

Tip: As a side effect gum causes bloating.

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Eat without over-eating before boarding

That’s because the meals served during flights are usually un-filling, and sometimes also un-fulfilling.

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So now that you know all about what you should do before boarding an aircraft, isn’t it time to drop everything, book a ticket, & flyTravel Now!

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Our Readers Comments

  1. It’s true all over the world. But be sure also that’s the most welcome you can have in Egypt

  2. Perfect. ..excellent summary…plz keep on

  3. You saved writing our always missing to-do list.. Perfect

  4. Thanks for the resume . It helped us a lot. Thanks keep on..

  5. Thanks for the info it was vet helpful. Keep on the good work

  6. I think you can add “get an international driving license”

    • Well, I don’t think it’s not a must at all!
      Using public transportation is a real pleasure :)

  7. What are the procedures and requirements to get a Schengen Visa for Egyptians

  8. Dont forget to get your camera !!

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