Eight Tips for Easy Air Travel

Last Updated Oct 1, 2009 12:17 PM EDT

Fly much? Then you know why the experience provides such rich fodder for comedians. It's a pain in the rear from the moment you step foot in the airport.

Fortunately, there are ways to make air travel a little easier. Here's a sampling from the eight tips over at Productivity 501:

Ship Your Luggage With the additional fees airlines are charging simply to check a suitcase, shipping your luggage to your destination can be cost effective. Not only do you skip the extra fees, but you can avoid the long lines some airports have waiting for your checked luggage to be x-rayed.

Early Flights Make sure you know when the airline opens. If you arrive two hours early, you may end up sitting in the lobby, waiting for the ticket counter or security to open. Just because the airline says to get there two hours early doesn't mean they are going to show up.

Although there's probably nothing on this list you haven't seen before, it's a good refresher for those who don't travel regularly.

Personally, I always make sure I've got something to read, including at least one book and/or magazine in case my iPhone dies (taking my treasured Kindle e-book app with it). You never know where a delay will happen: On the ground, on the tarmac, or even in the air.

Got any air-travel tips of your own to share? Hit the comments.

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    Rick Broida, a technology writer for more than 20 years, is the author of more than a dozen books. In addition to writing CNET's The Cheapskate blog, he contributes to CNET's iPhone Atlas.