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Contents: Prices | Jet Lag | Health | Baggage


Booking 8 weeks in advance will usually get the best price.
Average price for a round trip from NJ to CA spring 2014:
Time before travel:
3 months    $350
2 months    $350
1 month     $400
2 weeks     $500-$550
10 days     $550-$600
1 week      $500-$550  (Prices may drop if it looks like seats are not filling)

Holliday Air Travel:
5 Tips for Saving on Holiday Air Travel - The New York Times 2016:
Book your Thanksgiving flights before Halloween.

Book your Christmas flight before your Thanksgiving flight - Hopper Research
Based on Hopper's historical data, on average the best time to book Christmas flights is about 80 days before departure (aka Beginning of October)

Kayak data 2012:
air travel prices
The Best Time to Book Your Travel is... - KAYAK Travel Hacker l Blog
Price Trends & Tips Explanation - KAYAK


  • Many frequent flyer programs allow you to send arrival infromation to your pick-up person by text message or phone message.
  • Be prepared to wait at the airport. Even if you have your airline account setup to send you email, text messages and/or phone messages you may not be notified until after your scheduled departure that you have been moved to a different flight because of a connecting flight cancellation. I checked my bags, checked in at the gate and headed down the jet-way when they came and got me to inform me my flight had been changed. My online itinerary from the Internet and 800 number still showed me on the original flight.
  • Check your on-line profile every-so-often to make sure it has the right phone number and text message number. My text message info. got deleted when they reorganized their web site.
  • The airline can give your seat away if you don't check in within a certain time before the flight.
  • If you find a flight cancelled at the airport and they tell you to wait for an agent to re-schedule you, you may be able to call the airline and get on another, more convenient flight without waiting for the agent.
  • You never know when your luggage will be lost/delayed. Cary meds and extra underwear in your cary-on.
  • Carry snacks with you for nutrition if you get stuck somewhere.
  • Take care to only fill containers 5/6 of the way full and squeeze out excess air so they won't leak due to altitude changes.
  • Make sure the tag applied to your luggage has the right airport code for your destination.


  • Pick security line on the left. Most people like to turn right.
  • Rolling clothes takes up less room than folding.

Jet Lag

One adapts more easily after a flight Westward because there is a longer day and we have an endogenous1 clock of about 25 hours. Circadian rhythms need about one day to adapt for each time zone crossed. In other words 5 hours' time difference will require approximately 5 days adaptation.
Source: Richard M Harding and F John Mills Aviation Medicine Articles from BMJ 1983

Tips for avoiding jet Lag.

  • Make sure you have had enough sleep before you leave. Sleep deficit or 'debt' will make jet lag worse.
  • Limit or avoid alcohol and caffeinated drinks.
  • Carry water with you and drink 8 oz./hr.
  • Try to nap whenever you feel sleepy.
  • Eat small meals frequently, choosing lighter foods like fruit and vegetables.
  • Wear loose, comfortable clothing.
  • Whenever possible, walk around the cabin or do exercises in your seat.
  • Take a nap about an hour after you land.

Frequent Flyer points: 100 points are worth about $1, so it doesn't pay to charge your $400 sewer bill to a credit card if there is a $9 fee.

See Also: Techniques for reducing jet lag
Coping with Jet Lag
Information about sleep at the NIH

Can Jet Lag be minimized by taking Melatonin?
There have been conflicting reports on the side affects of melatonin and now there are strong doubts about Melatonin as a jet lag remedy.
See: Latest Research, Melatonin:A Review

No-Jet-Lag is a homeopathic pill from Miers Labs which may help. It's available at Pharmacies, Natural Food Stores, Luggage and Travel Accessory stores and Magellans. _______________________

1. "endogenous" - Internal Biological Clock as opposed to exogenous clock which is affected by environmental cues the strongest of which is light, but social cues and exercise are also factors.


Airborne An effervescent tablet like Alka Seltzer that with seven Herbal Extracts, Antioxidants, Electrolytes, and Amino Acids, offers maximum vitamin and herbal protection for hours! You can get it at Longs, Rite Aid, Walgreens, Walmart, Albertsons, Trader Joes, travel stores and others or Magellans.

Myth - You are more likely to get a cold on a plane because the air ventilation system circulates the germs
Studies show that travelers on airplanes that use fresh air rather than recirculated are just a likely to get colds. People who fly a lot are more likely to get colds. Source: NPR - Savvy Traveler

There are solutions and ointments (e.g. Boroleum) that you can use in-flight to keep your nasal membranes moist. This will help lower your susceptibilty to airborne viruses.

Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) can be a problem when sitting for many hours in a cramped airline seat. Prevention:

  • Drink lots of water, and avoid beverages that dehydrate (coffee, tea, alcohol)
  • Avoid salty food; snack instead on healthy foods to encourage good circulation
  • Wear support socks that apply the proper amount of compression to the lower legs
  • Get up and move around the aircraft cabin occasionally (aisle seats make this easier)
  • Exercise your feet and legs four to five minutes every hour when seated. Consider special exercise and support cushions that are medically designed to aid this exercise
See Also: Health & Hygiene at Magellans

Baggage Luggage

Prohibited Items (pdf) for Carry-on and Checked luggage at the Transportation Security Administration (TSA)

Maximum Carry-on dimensions:
Carry-on Advice at

Maximum combined linear measurement (L + W + H) of the carry-on bag:
Max. common for all: 9x14x22 in.

  • United: 45 in. and dimensions should not be more than 9x14x22.
  • Continental: 51 inches combined.
  • American: 45 in/114 c.
  • SW Air: 10x16x24 inches.
  • Delta: 9"x14"x22"
  • Thai: 10x18x22 in. = 56 + 46 + 25 cm
  • China Air: 9x14x22 in. = 56cm/L x 23cm/W x 36cm/H

See also:
Fare Finders
Travel Tips at SW Air
Travel Advise at Magellans a website for business travelers by Joe Brancatelli.
Ask Flyana - Diana Fairechild has on-time stats for individual flights.

Savvy Traveler
Air Travel at Yahoo

last updated 21 Oct 2004