HOUSTON, TX – Holiday travel season is nearly here, and today AIG Travel provided tips for navigating challenging holiday air travel experiences. According to Airports Council International (ACI), the overall number of global airline passengers grew by 4.8 percent in the first half of 2014, outpacing year-over-year growth seen in the first half of 2013 and creating the likelihood that this year’s holiday travel season will be a crowded and hectic time in airports around the world.
“Flying during the holidays can be stressful for even the most seasoned travelers,” said Jeff Rutledge, CEO, AIG Travel. “A moderately priced travel insurance plan may help mitigate the costs of unforeseen delays or cancellations, lost or damaged luggage, and medical emergencies while traveling, but being aware of some basic tips can help prevent many other hassles that can accompany air travel.”
Some of AIG Travel’s expert tips include:
Airlines and airports
•Reserve flights early to ensure the most convenient routes.
•Book flights that depart earlier in the day to help avoid potential delays.
•Arrive early to the airport – at least two hours prior to your departure, longer for international flights – as getting through security can take up to 90 minutes.
•Avoid checking bags, if possible.
•Keep holiday gifts unwrapped in carry-on bags and checked luggage, as packages can be opened for an additional security screening.
•Carry a printed boarding pass as a backup to your mobile device.
Research and reserve
•Research local airports and be aware of alternative airports near your departure and destination, so you or your travel assistance provider (like AIG Travel) can try to reroute in case of unforeseen closures or departure issues.
•Note the locations of airport security checkpoints, baggage claim and ticket counters.
•Research social media networks for your preferred airline and airports of choice to stay up to date on pertinent information.
•Keep copies of adult passengers’ photo IDs or passports as .pdf documents on your secured mobile device.
•Put airlines’ websites and customer service phone numbers in your mobile phone contact list along with the phone number for your travel insurance and assistance provider, so you can get immediate assistance if you need it.
•Keep a list of contact information (phone number, web address and email) for your hotel, car rental company, and other providers related to your travel plans.
•Bring an all-in-one portable charger for phones, laptops, tablets and other devices.