Air Travel Tips

As the kids finish school and summer has hit Houston with record temperatures this year, for some it's time for a vacation. If you're a fair weather traveler or you're travelling as a family, it can be pretty stressful. From the KUHF NewsLab — Edel Howlin has some tips to ease that stress.

Over 50 million people nationwide take a trip during the summer months, many of them travelling by air. More people can mean more delays and this can sometimes start your vacation off on the wrong note.

Marlene McClinton with Houston Airport System warns travelers that this is a very different time of year at Houston airports.

"Well as always, we remind passengers — those travelling through the airports — that during the summer months we have a different type of traveler in the terminals. We have more elderly, more children at the checkpoint lane that may mean you have a different experience."

McClinton says people need to be aware of what’s ahead of them before they even arrive at the airport. Something as straight forward as parking can be pretty difficult at this time of year.

"We have thousands of parking spaces at both of our airports, but obviously there’s a premium during the summer travel season. We want to make sure people leave enough time to transit from the parking areas."

Once passengers have arrived at the airport, the long lines can be intimidating. But McClinton says there’s a way around that.

"We do have the new automated people mover, the APM, which now connects all of the terminals. That would make things much easier for people connecting, or for instance, decide to go through the checkpoint at one terminal, because it’s more open and then walk the concourse to another terminal."

When it comes to security Louis Casanova with the TSA in Texas says there’s plenty of ways people can avoid big delays, starting with what you wear.

"Shoes that are easily removable, so that you don’t have to tie and untie like slipons. If you don’t have to wear a belt even better, otherwise you will probably would need to remove the belt. So the lighter the clothing, the easier it is for you and the quicker you’ll get through the line."

Casanova advises parents to look for family lanes so they can take their time and not worry about the line forming behind them. He also warns if you plan to bring back a souvenir from vacation, you may want to choose wisely.

"The problem with snow globes is because they can’t be opened and the liquid can’t be assessed. You’re better off shipping those."

Whether you’re traveling long haul or just a short city trip the most important thing is to plan ahead. For more information on Houston airports and travel schedules, visit Fly 2 Houston.com.

From the KUHF Newslab, I’m Edel Howlin.

Bio photo of Edel Howlin

Edel Howlin

Producer, Houston Matters

Edel is a producer on Houston Matters and reporter for PBS’s Newshour Weekend...