Tips for reducing hot travel chaos this summer – Metro.co.uk

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Preparing for travel has never been more important (Picture: Getty Images)

In many ways, this summer can be best described as being ‘hot travel chaos.’

I, like most other people in the country, have had my fair share of travel delays – without even leaving the country.

Last week, my usual two-hour train to London took just under four hours. The week before that, I spent five hours in London Euston waiting for my (extremely delayed) ride home. 

With travel delays, long-lost luggage and abrupt cancellations at every turn, it’s important to start factoring this disruption into account – especially if you have a trip coming up.

Whether it’s making the most of long hours at the airport (or the station) or keeping the delays in mind as you pack, here are a few ways you can try to make the most out of one of the most chaotic summer holidays yet.

Anticipate delays

You might be waiting a while (Picture: Getty Images)

Sarah Boyd, product manager at Destination Sport Experiences says to ‘arrive early’ and have your liquids in a clear bag to ‘smoothly’ tackle pre-security chaos.

‘Remember that queues may look overwhelming, but airport staff are well-trained in managing the flow of foot traffic,’ she tells Metro.co.uk.

Bring distractions

Being prepared for the long delays also means thinking about how to fill the seemingly endless waiting times in the lounge.

Sarah advises travellers to fill up that time by doing things that ‘you might typically not have time for’ in your everyday life.

‘Use your wait time to enjoy some of the smaller pleasures [in life],’ she tells Metro.co.uk.

‘Get through some chapters of your book, listen to a podcast, binge a Netflix series or get hyped up reading/rechecking your holiday plans – time is a gift, so use it and embrace it.

‘Things often look worse at first glance – if you do experience lengthy delays or cancellations once through to departures, know that it is out of your control.’

Opt for cabin baggage

This summer may be the time for cabin luggage to (rightly) shine.

With this being the summer of lost luggage, you might want to pack savvy and go for the opposite of your typical holiday routine – and keep as much as you can on you. This means making cabin luggage your best friend.

Be tactical with packing large suitcases

Don’t get caught up with your essentials being buried in the graveyard of luggage (Picture: Getty Images)

If you’re travelling in a group, Sarah says to ‘split all of your belongings equally’ throughout the luggage.

‘This means, if one bag goes missing, it doesn’t leave one person without anything at all,’ she says.

‘It’s also important to label your suitcase with your name, contact number and home address.’ 

In terms of what to keep in your cabin bag, it’s advised to keep anything of importance.

This could be chargers, a spare change of clothes and security friendly toiletries, and anything else you can’t afford to lose to the luggage graveyard.

Look into trains and coaches

Finally, try and consider alternative ways of travel. If planes are looking unpredictable, see if rail travel suits you (although given the current disruption to UK trains you might want to plan ahead.)

One other, less talked about way of long distance travel is by coach. While it may take longer, it can often be a smoother journey from A to B. 

Andreas Schroling, managing director of long distance coach company FlixBus, tells Metro.co.uk that travellers should ‘do research about different types of transport options’ before settling on one.

‘Many consumers are aware that the coach industry is an unsung hero in terms of travel, as we have kept the country moving during recent rail strikes,’ says Andreas. 

‘For those going further afield, FlixBus offers direct, affordable international journeys from London to France, Germany and the Netherlands, which completely avoid airline cancellations and airport queues.’

Andreas also describes coach travel as a ‘really relaxing way to travel’ with coaches often taking you from city centre to city centre.

She adds: ‘Coach travel is reliable, sustainable and affordable, while the experience is comfortable – you will always get a seat with plenty of legroom – and our digital booking process is easy and straightforward.’

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