1. Line your suitcase with a plastic bag
On a trip to Molokai, the plane we were on was small and luggage was crammed in every which way. At baggage claim, we noticed that someone had packed a bottle of something and it had broken and leaked everywhere. Now we line our suitcases with garbage bags to protect our clothes, just in case.
Kathy Huseman, Niceville, Fla.
2. Don’t settle for the first answer to your travel question
If you need flight information, it’s a good idea to phone the airline more than once and ask the same question. Recently, I wanted to see if I could fly standby on an earlier flight the same day. The first time I called I was told the earlier flight was booked. The second time, the agent said I could certainly fly standby. In the end I not only got a standby flight, I was upgraded to first class.
Kathryn Johnson, New York, N.Y.
3. For sales on cruise mementos, pick the last sailing to a particular region
We like to buy shipboard souvenirs, so we try to choose a ship that’s completing its run of the area—that’s when merchandise is generally put on sale. Last year for example, on a sailing in South America, all of the T-shirts, glassware, and rain jackets were 75% off.
Kathie Kilker, Patterson, N.Y.
4. Hit the gym for free water
Before you buy expensive bottled water from your hotel room minibar, head to the fitness center. You’ll be able to fill up an empty bottle at the gym fountain for free… and you don’t need to break a sweat.
Karen Lees, Williamsville, N.Y.
5. Leave damaged dollar bills at home
We’ve traveled to Mexico and China in the last year and had the same experience in both countries: When we tried to exchange dollars to local currency, the banks wouldn’t take any bills with graffiti or that were ripped or damaged in anyway. Make sure any money you want to exchange are crisp and clean.
Julie Levinson, Northville, Mich.
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