Trip Prep and Travel Etiquette

Posted On: June 27, 2017

Whoever said, “It’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey,” probably never suffered through a long flight in the middle seat of the back row on a trans-Atlantic flight with an armrest hog on one side and a non-stop talker on the other. 

Carefully preparing for your trip can make the difference between lugging around overstuffed bags or losing the battle over an armrest and being able to relax and soak in all that a fascinating, new destination offers. Our team at Docherty Incentives & Meetings compiled a list of packing tips and travel etiquette to help you make the most of your upcoming travel incentive trip.

Before the Trip: Packing Like a Boss

Once we have your travel incentive plans set, you get to focus on packing for your particular destination. A common tip for travelers is to pack your bag, then remove half of the items and leave them at home. Remember: the only people who’ll know you’re wearing the same outfit multiple times are you and your traveling companions (and probably they’ll be too excited by the amazing new sights or asleep on the beach to notice).

Here are some other great packing tips for savvy travelers:

  • List. Make a packing list. Check out for some tips on how to stick to one bag for your trip.
  • Roll. Rolling each item will take up less room in your luggage. Also consider organizing your belongings in packable cubes.
  • Carry. If you check your suitcase, your carry-on bag should have your prescription medications, glasses and/or contact lenses, a sweater or jacket (airplanes tend to be chilly) and possibly a change of clothes. Plan for the worst (a lost bag), but hope for the best.
  • Washables. Bring washable clothes in neutral colors. You can add a scarf or jacket to change up any outfit.
  • Shoes. Pack comfortable shoes. Nothing is worse than missing a great walking tour because of blisters from heels, pumps, new shoes that aren’t broken-in or stylish footwear that look killer, but kill your feet.
  • Bags. Put a few reusable plastic bags in your luggage. They’re great for dirty clothes or shoes and wet bathing suits.
  • Headphones. Headphones are excellent if you want to listen to music, watch movies or simply drown out a loud seat mate.
  • Adaptors. For overseas trips, bring an adapter for your electronic devices. Check with Docherty Incentives & Meetings for specific information on which adapter you’ll need for your destination.
  • Copies. Take one copy of your passport, and leave one copy at home. Put a copy of your itinerary on top of your packed items. In case your bag is lost or someone mistakenly takes yours, your luggage can find its way back to you.
  • No-nos. Leave valuables at home.

Getting There is Half the Battle: Travel Etiquette

No matter the length of your flight, an uncomfortable trip can affect your mood for days — or even weeks. Practicing positive travel etiquette can only help make your trip smooth sailing:

  1. The Dreaded Middle: If you’re in the middle seat, take out everything you’ll need for the flight and put it in your seat pocket before you even sit down. Trying to access your bags during the trip can be a nuisance.
  2. Armrest Wars: Instead of battling over the arm rest, discuss a time-share option for the flight: you get the arm rest for half of the flight, and your seat mate gets it during the other half.
  3. Plug-in, Drown-out: Bring earbuds, or better yet, noise-canceling headphones.
  4. Happily Honest: To deal with seat-pullers or seat-kickers, space invaders, loud talkers or people at the luggage carousel who block everyone else, always remember: manners matter. By politely acknowledging someone’s bothersome behavior you’ll likely see it come to an end. 

You can’t control other people’s behavior, but you can control how you respond to their behavior…and that can make all the difference.

At Docherty Incentives & Meetings, we have over 30 years of experience planning amazing trips, travel rewards and meetings worldwide and in the process helping our clients prepare for every adventure. We want your travelers to focus on enjoying the destination, so we’re here to make the journey easier. Call us today to learn how we can help you make the most of your group travel program.