Rachel Rudwall gets around. As an on-camera host and Emmy-nominated TV producer (she’s worked on shows including History Channel’s “Ice Road Truckers” and “Ax Men”), she regularly drops herself into far-flung locations to relate their stories to outsiders. She’s touched down on six continents and more than 40 nations for TV networks such as National Geographic, Travel, and Discovery.
Rudwall is also the co-creator and host of How 2 Travelers, a digital travel series also starring world traveler Andrea Feczko that takes viewers on a weekly trip around the world with videos like “2 Girls, 1 Jetpack,” “Six Strange Things to Do on a Train,” and “Hot Dogs in Iceland.” And if those instant classics sound unlike anything you’ve seen before, Rudwall’s got the travel tips to match: Here are her favorite ways to make your travel experience quicker, easier, and a whole lot more fun (make sure to click the links for full-video explanations of each tip from How 2 Travelers!).
Keep your in-flight “must haves” in one place so that you’re ready to go at the drop of a hat. There’s nothing worse than scrambling to find your passport before an international flight, or realizing you’ve forgotten your neck cushion at home as you’re boarding a red-eye. If you keep all of your favorite amenities in one place, packing can be fiasco-free.
Roll—don’t fold—your clothing. You’ll be able to fit a lot more into your suitcase and increase your chances of getting everything into that wee little carry-on, which saves you money since you won’t have to check a bag.
Whether you want that TSA Precheck stamp on all your boarding passes (See ya, security lines! I’m leaving you my shoes on!), or the ability to bypass passport control and customs lines when reentering the U.S. from overseas, Global Entry will save you loads of time on every trip you take. Of course, being enrolled in the program requires a rigorous background check.
Ever heard those pre-boarding announcements saying your flight is oversold and the airline is looking for passengers to bump to a later flight? Get on that. By volunteering your seat, you can make hundreds of dollars in travel vouchers, and often you’re put on a flight arriving to your destination just a few hours behind schedule.
You’ve probably already got luggage tags on your bag so that if your stuff gets lost in transit, it still finds its way to you. The problem is, sometimes bag tags go missing, making it tough to locate your lost luggage. To avoid that drama, place a large note on the top of your clothing in your suitcase, sharing your name, email, and telephone number, informing the airlines whose bag they’ve found. With that trick up your sleeve, the airline can reunite you and your precious luggage.
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