Monthly Archives: July 2012
There are 2 programs out there that will make your life at the airport much easier.
Global Entry (Get through US customs without waiting in lines)
I have been a Global Entry member for the past year and a half. It is a spectacular program which, once you have been approved, lets you use an automated machine that scans your passport, takes your fingerprints and photo, and lets you fill out that pesky arrival card on a touch screen.
The best part about this is zipping through the whole process while trying to catch a connection or after you arrive home from a long flight.
The sign up process is fairly involved with a good amount of paperwork and an in person interview with an agent. There is a $100 fee, which some frequent flyer programs or credit card programs will cover for you. The registration lasts 5 years.
Visit http://www.globalentry.gov/ to get signed up.
TSA Pre (Get through security with your shoes on)
I had signed up for this program a while back but just experienced it for the first time last week. The TSA person scanned my ticket before I entered the general line and directed me to a new line I had never seen before which had a “TSA Pre(check)” sign next to it. I walked right up to the security conveyor belt and a TSA person instructed me to leave my laptop and liquids in my luggage, keep my shoes and belt on and just empty my pockets. I was done in under 2 min. It was AWESOME!
This program goes hand in hand with Global Entry so I would sign up for both.
Visit here for more info http://www.tsa.gov/what_we_do/escreening.shtm
Air Sickness is a combination of motion sickness and altitude sickness. I have done plenty of research on remedies and found some of my own measures that help. Below are the key items and actions which will help keep you feeling good as you are cooped up in a plane for 10+ hours.
Air planes are incredibly dry and dehydration can be the main cause to headaches, nausea and general air sickness.
- COCONUT WATER is hands down the best drink to bring on a plane. Brands such as VitaCoco, ONE or Zico can be found in most airport newsstands. The hydrate better than sport drinks and electrolyte enhanced water.
- Never pass on water when offered by the crew.
- Avoid alcohol, this can add to the dehydration.
- Limit your caffeine intake.
SNACK ON CRACKERS AND PRETZELS
This is a trick I learned when sailing. If you snack on bland crackers (like oyster crackers, saltines, water crackers) and pretzels, it keeps your stomach settled. If you hit a lounge beforehand stock up on their crackers.
GET SOME SLEEP
Lack of sleep will add to that air sickness feeling. Try to relax. Sleep is your friend.
- Get a neck pillow, put in earplugs, strap on a sleeping mask and take deep breaths
- Dramamine, and PM meds can help with this too
- Try herbal relaxers like Valerian Root…this is great stuff, even helps with adjusting to time zones.
***BONUS TIP: Adam’s Dehydration Magic Potion Recipe***
If you still feel sick after landing, or after a long night, try these below steps.
In a blender mix up (or omit banana and mix in a glass)
1. Half a can of Coke Zero (Must be coke, not pepsi or Shasta or RC etc.)
2. About 8oz straight Coconut Water
3. One dose of liquid pepto bismol
4. 1 banana
Use this drink to swallow 2 Excedrin Migraine tablets
You will start feeling better in about 30 minutes.
Here are a few packing tips that I have learned along the way…Part 1
IF POSSIBLE CARRY ON
Having all your luggage with you gives you flexibility and ensures that your luggage doesn’t get lost. If I have a 4 day trip, I carry on. If I am going to be in a different hotel each night for a week, I carry on. Remember that hotels have laundry services, so if needed you can minimize what you bring along in the first place.
DON’T FORGET YOUR UNDERWEAR
I pack my clothes as I would get dressed. (1st)Underwear, (2nd) Pants, (3rd)Shirts, (4th)Socks. That way I don’t miss any of the essentials. Whoops I forgot my belt.
ROLL CERTAIN PIECES
Some people like to roll everything rather than fold, I mix it up a little. I always roll my underwear, athletic gear and t-shirts. I fold pants, polos, shirts and blazers(a video on how to pack a suit on its way). Socks I use for stuffing and padding.
TRY PACKING CUBES
I have been using packing cubes for the past year and I really like them. The keep my clothes sorted and allow me to quickly remove chunks of my luggage so I can get to the bottom without making a mess. There are plenty of options for packing cubes out there. I use Rick Steve’s Packing cubes which I bought on Amazon http://www.amazon.com/Rick-Steves-Packing-Cube–Black/dp/B000PWIQHW/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1342466837&sr=8-1&keywords=rick+steves+packing+cubes
REPACK YOUR DIRTY LAUNDRY
Ever notice how you have less room in your suitcase on the way home? Yes you probably bought some stuff but most times it is because the dirty laundry bag is stuffed and bulging.
I know it sounds silly but I refold my dirty laundry when I put it into my laundry bag, it keeps it in the same size as when I packed it, giving me all that space I had when I efficiently packed my bag in the first place.
Do you have any packing tips? Leave us a comment.
Thanks for following Sample the Culture and check in next Monday for another blog entry.
Check out the rural area of Vinh Long Vietnam, just outside of Saigon. You wont find this with a tour guide.
Yes that’s right, it’s time for a new video already.
We will post it Monday night…it’s a good one too.