Credit: Judy Antell / Vegetarian TMOM

Tips to Avoid Travel Snafus

As a seasoned traveler, I should not have snafus. But every once in awhile, I let my guard down — and the travel gods are not kind.

These become more glaring when you fly.


Travel Mistakes to Avoid:

Go barefoot in the airport security line.


Credit: Judy Antell / Vegetarian TMOM

I have been following this mantra for years, ever since the TSA started making us take shoes off in the airport. But when I dropped my daughter off at JFK for her trip to Costa Rica, she was wearing Topsiders — and everyone knows you can’t wear them with socks. So I stood at security with the other parents and watched my barefoot daughter walk through the security. Ugh.

Don’t juice up your electronics.

I know that Twitter, Instagram and Facebook eat battery power, but I neglected to charge my phone before getting to my last flight. I was praying for a short line so I could show my e-boarding pass. I was in the danger zone, but I made it. Then I had to wait on line at the Miami airport for a free plug.

Forget the headphones.

Even if you don’t have an iPod, there might be a movie or TV screen and some airlines charge for low quality headphones.

Leave the sweater at home.

Even in summer, it can be cold in the airport or on the plane, and to save money, most airlines have taken away the free blankets. Plus, those blankets aren’t the softest. And if you wear a sweater, you save room in your suitcase for a cute pair of shoes.

Avoid packing a snack.

On my recent trip home from Portland, I was leaving too early in the morning to buy food, and the airport was a culinary wasteland, surprising for such a foodie city. Luckily, I had a stopover in Minneapolis and happened upon the organic French Meadow Bakery Café. I got excellent (though expensive) vegetarian black bean chili, and window-shopped great sandwiches and salads. But in the San Juan airport the next month, the healthy vegetarian choices were limited to bottled water. Plan ahead.