Pack a Good Attitude - and Other Travel Tips

A big "thank you" to USA Today travel reporter Charisse Jones for including several of my travel tips in today's holiday travel article!

Since I fly more than 150,000 miles each year, I'm a big believer in controlling what you can - and chilling out about the rest of it. 

The article quotes me in several places, but here are a few more ways I stay sane and productive when travelling:

#1 - Create a "Happy Zone" Around You

Be nice to TSA workers, gate agents, flight attendants and other passengers.  Smiles and calmness are contagious, and they will help you maintain a good attitude – even when faced with travel disruption.

#2 - Book the First Flight of the Day

It’s not fun to get up early, but 6 a.m. flights generally depart on time.

#3 - Don't Book the Last Flight

If you absolutely positively must be there in the morning, you have no backup if the flight is cancelled.  Since I always do morning shows, this is a big one for me.

#4 - Expect Delays and Cancellations

Assume that your flight will be delayed and that you will spend time on the tarmac.  I always check flight schedules to have a back-up plan in case I need to make changes.

#5 - Pack Water and Snacks

Don’t depend on an in-flight beverage service, especially on short flights.  Buy a bottle in the airport, or bring an empty bottle to fill after security.  My carry-on always includes packages of mixed nuts, Larabars or an apple.

#6 - Have Something to Read

I usually have a pile of work to do, but also have a Texture subscription on my iPad so I always have People, Vanity Fair, Vogue, and other magazines at my fingertips.  

#7 - Bring Headphones

Essential for listening to music or watching movies, but they also help tune out the chaos around you.

#8 - Let It Go

For me, the key to stress-free travel is recognizing that the entire process is outside of my control.  If there are weather delays, flight cancellations or other issues, there is absolutely nothing I can do about it.  Control what you can (see tips one through seven), and try to simply go with the flow. 

What other tips work for you?