Steve Slater, the Jet Blue flight attendant who popped a circuit and generated national empathy (we like the fact that he grabbed two beers before hitting the chute), might be the hero of the moment to millions of dissatisfied employees, many of whom are working longer hours in a grim economy, but to DJs, Slater and the entire crew on every flight play the hero–all the time. Here’s some travel tips from international DJs.
Get to your gateway city as early as you can. Delays stack up as the day progresses, so book the first flight you can into a hub if you have a connecting flight.
Buy your ticket under the exact name that appears on your ID. It might seem obvious to you that Frank is a nickname for Francis, but it may not to a desk agent―any of whom could ask you to show ID with that name before boarding.
Stockpile samples. Carry samples of cosmetics and prescription creams. Go to walmart.triaddigital.com or freesamplesblog.com for a variety of freebie offers. Or take advantage of Sephora’s and Kiehls’s policies of giving three free samples with any online order.
BYO blanket (and disinfecting wipes, too). Here’s a dirty secret: tray tables are rarely cleaned, so wipe them off before you use them. And steer clear of the blankets and pillows. They’re only washed when they look dirty.
Call for help. If you’ve missed a connection, don’t stand in line to rebook with a gate agent. Instead, use your cell phone to call the airline’s customer-service number (tuck it in your wallet before leaving). You’ll speak to someone faster, giving you a better shot at a seat on the next flight.
Get fed fast. To have dinner waiting in your hotel room when you arrive, call and order room service from the road. It can save a hungry half hour.