Although the Key West Airport isn’t a large airport by any means, many trips require a connecting flight, and those can be tricky to navigate. Although young, I have had plenty of experience on planes traveling alone and with my family. Here’s a list of my tips and tricks for the airport and airplane.
First, try to keep your carry-on and personal bags packed light. It’s hard enough to put the bags in the overhead bins, but you also have to carry them around the airport with you. This tip is especially useful if you don’t have a carry-on suitcase and are using a duffle bag instead. Your personal bag is useful as well, but if you hate carrying more than one bag, as I do, pants with lots of pockets will be a lifesaver. Just make sure to only carry the necessary items, you don’t want to hold up the line at the Transport Security Administration (TSA). Keep your ID handy, and if you get it out before you have to hand it over, it keeps the line moving, and you get through faster.
There are some items you will want to keep easily accessible during your flight and while you wait. Keep a charger on hand, especially if you have a connecting flight. Those long waits will have you bored out of your mind, and though a book is handy, many will resort to their phones. Keep a pair of earbuds or headphones on you too. Earbuds are handy for people who hate the quiet. I recommend wired earbuds so the battery on your phone or earbuds doesn’t die, but if it’s the only thing you have, or you just prefer them, BlueTooth earbuds work just as well. Pack some snacks for your trip too. Although airport food is good for meals and snacks, it’s expensive, packing some snacks doesn’t hurt, but wait to get a drink.
Connecting flights are a pain, yet necessary. I recommend plugging in your phone, relaxing with some music, watching videos, or reading a book. Sometimes your wait time can be hours long, but I don’t recommend sleeping during your layover. Unless you wake up well to an alarm clock, you could sleep through your flight, and that would be a bummer. I also recommend using the time during your layover to use the bathroom and stretch out, though the seats are tempting, your legs will get cramped during the flight.
The clothing you wear to the airport is just as important as the clothes you pack. You might want to look cute, but the first priority is comfort. Know the weather of where you’re landing too, the last thing you want is to be wearing shorts cause it’s nice out, but freezing once you land. Some airplanes are colder than the airport you just went through, so bringing a jacket is a must. Wearing jewelry shouldn’t be a problem, but it might be smart to not wear it or put it on after going through TSA.
Getting around an airport can be confusing the first couple of times you do it, but the signs all around help out a ton. If you don’t know where your next flight is, asking for directions to your next gate is a huge help. If the fastest way to your next gate is using a tram, don’t be afraid to get on one. As long as you listen to where you are, you’ll find your way. The tram gets you places much faster and requires less navigation.
Although some airports are small like the Key West Airport, it’s good to be prepared for anything when you land. I may not be a pro, but hopefully, these tips will help you next time you ride a plane. Many people have different tips to offer too, these are just a few of the ones I’ve picked up during flights.