When you’re traveling by plane, you can sometimes be a little more disorganized than usual. You’re holding a carry-on, personal item, suitcase and maybe a coat and a bag of lunch, too. So when you’ve finally checked in, your boarding pass may be the least important things in your physical and mental list of “stuff.” That notwithstanding, here are some things you should NEVER do with your boarding pass:
Understanding what airline alliances are and which airlines are in each alliance is a key that unlocks the door to the next level of miles and points earning and usage. The basics of airline alliances is not that difficult to understand and that knowledge will allow you to use your miles in ways you never thought were possible.
When you find a hotel rate, especially in the United States, you will rarely, if ever pay just that amount. Just like when you purchase an item in the U.S., unless it says that tax is included, chances are good that you’ll have to pay tax on top of the advertised price; that’s just how we charge for things in the U.S. The same goes for hotels. Unless an advertised price explicitly says that taxes & fees are included, you can bet that something(s) is/are going to be added on to make your final price. And in recent years, some hotels have added on something sneaky called a “resort fee,” too. Plus you often have to put down a deposit for incidentals. But let’s start at the very beginning (a very good place to start):
Unless you’re of the generation that has been raised with computers, smart phones, etc., there can sometimes be a learning curve when you have a new piece of electronics. For some it might be as simple as a glance at the instructions just to learn one specific thing. For others, well, maybe they need to take a class or two. Such was the case of this poor chap…
When applying for a credit card you’ll usually see a place to add authorized users. The banks will phrase it like “ADD UP TO FIVE PEOPLE TO YOUR ACCOUNT FOR NO EXTRA CHARGE!” If you do this, the bank will send credit cards for everyone. Great, right? Maybe, maybe not. Here’s a quick rundown of what an authorized user is and why it may be a good, or a bad, idea to add one to your account.
I’ve written in the past about how to sign up for frequent flyer programs and hotel programs. With each of those, you earn loyalty points or miles you can redeem in the future for flights or hotel nights. While some car rental companies also run loyalty programs that can earn you free rental days, the reason you should sign up for these programs is because of how much easier they make renting a car.
The thing I hate most about renting a car is the experience at the rental counter. It’s when, after usually waiting in a line, you get to talk to the car rental agent……. and then the sales pitches for an upgraded car, extra features (navigation, satellite radio), pre-paid gas and coverages begin. After denying (or accepting, I’m not one to judge) each one of these, I feel as if I had to make a deal just to rent the car I reserved for the price I agreed to pay. This is where registering for the loyalty program really pays off. You answer all of these questions in advance and certify these choices will apply to all your rentals unless you specify otherwise. Now when you walk to the counter, you simply hand over your drivers license and credit card and sign for the keys, or so they say. It’s easier to rent from some rental companies than others but enrolling in the rental company’s program will always make the process go along with less hiccups.
Here are the sign up links for the major car rental loyalty programs including any perks that are included and if they award loyalty points.
We all know the process of getting through X-ray has become something of a time consuming organized chaos in the past several years. In fact, I’d put it up towards the top of the more stressful parts of air travel, up there with delays and the actual flight. Getting approved for TSA Pre✓® (which is currently available in more than 180 airports, with 37 participating airlines nationwide) or Global Entry does help tremendously, but even then, there are people who are not super familiar with the modern-day process of going through X-ray, with or without TSA Pre✓®, simply because they don’t fly very often, and sometimes that unfamiliarity can cause the line to snag even more. Here’s a list that might help: