I've been a flight attendant for 2 years. Here are 11 of the best travel tips I've collected so far.

The author wearing a pink beret and a black dress over a white shirt. She is posing in front of the Louvre.
As a flight attendant, I've picked up lots of travel tips over the years.Valerie Fraser
  • I'm a flight attendant who has flown hundreds of thousands of miles around the globe.

  • I recommend downloading the airline's app before flying to stay up-to-date on flight information.

  • I advise travelers to build an extra day or two into their itinerary when flying for a big event.

Traveling can be stressful, especially if you're not a frequent flier.

As a flight attendant of two years who has flown hundreds of thousands of miles around the globe, I've collected useful tips to make your travels more enjoyable.

Download the airline's app on your phone 

Each airline has its own unique mobile app, which I highly recommend downloading before heading to the airport.

This is where airlines can send out important information about your flight, from gate changes to delays or cancellations. Sometimes these apps send notifications before flight crews even find out about the changes.

Travel earlier in the day

A board showing flight statuses at the airport
A board showing flight statuses at the airport

I always recommend flying earlier in the day to avoid flight delays and cancellations.Adam McCullough/Shutterstock

If you're nervous about a flight being delayed or canceled, traveling earlier in the day can ease some of that worry.

Statistically speaking, flights have a tendency to be delayed more throughout the day, as delays can build on each other. By traveling early, you can often avoid the impacts of other delays and cancellations.

If you have an important event to attend, build an extra day or two into your itinerary

Because of weather and unexpected maintenance or crew issues, air travel can be unpredictable. If a flight is delayed or canceled, the airline will typically rebook you on the next available flight.

To avoid the possibility of missing an important event, I always recommend leaving a day or two of wiggle room in your itinerary if possible.

Travel with only a carry-on whenever you can

Luggage in the overhead bin on a plane.
Luggage in the overhead bin on a plane.

To avoid lost luggage, I recommend traveling with a carry-on bag.Semachkovsky/Shutterstock

To avoid the risk of lost luggage or paying a fee to check an oversized bag, I recommend traveling with a carry-on instead of a checked bag.

One of the best brands I've seen is TravelPro, which is what all the flight attendants use. I also love Beis, which offers cute and efficient storage with unique pockets and organization, as well as Away, which has a variety of great carry-on bags.

It's definitely worth it to invest in a nicer bag that will last a long time or at least come with a great warranty policy.

Don't stray from your usual skin-care or hair-care routine

Many travelers shy away from bringing a carry-on bag because of the restrictions on liquids. However, there are still ways to pack every step of your daily routine in a carry-on.

I love using the Cadence leak-proof travel containers, which can hold small amounts of your favorite products. These super cute, compact containers are also magnetic, making them easy to keep together in one spot.

Stay hydrated throughout your trip

Be sure to drink plenty of water before, during, and after flying. Because your body tends to dehydrate while in the air, drinking liquids will lessen your chances of getting a headache, getting sick, or having terrible jet lag.

Drinking water also helps to keep your skin hydrated, though I do still recommend bringing a mist or lotion to apply during and after your flight.

Bring things to keep you busy

A man reading a book on a plane
A man reading a book on a plane

A good book can keep you busy for the whole flight.Surachet Jo/Shutterstock

Because flights can be unpredictable, unexpected delays are always possible.

In-flight entertainment systems aren't always available or guaranteed, so I always tell passengers to download movies, TV shows, books, or games on their personal devices before their flight.

Always pack a large plastic bag in your luggage

A plastic bag is the most versatile item you can travel with.

Leaky cosmetics? Solved. A bathing suit that's still wet from a dip in the ocean? No problem. Filthy shoes from a hike? A plastic bag allows you to isolate them from your other items.

Bring filling snacks with you

No matter how much I eat before a flight, I still end up getting hungry. I always pack something salty and something sweet to pick on during or after my flight.

Some of my go-to snacks include granola bars, snack mixes, and dried fruits.

Pack an extra outfit in your carry-on

It's always a good idea to pack an extra outfit in your carry-on in case you get too hot or cold during the flight. It's also handy in case you spill something on yourself mid-flight.

Don't be afraid of a guided tour if you're traveling solo

Two photos of the author traveling. On the left, she is taking a selfie at the Cliffs of Moher in Ireland. On the right, she is posing while hiking a volcano in Guatemala.
I love booking guided tours during my time off.Valerie Fraser

Some of my favorite solo travel experiences have been guided day tours I've booked on Viator, Get Your Guide, and Airbnb Experiences.

Many tours pack multiple must-see attractions into one trip, and it's a great way to meet both locals and other tourists. I love doing food tours or booking a photographer for a unique and authentic experience.

Read the original article on Insider