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Practical Tips for U.S. Travelers

1. Arrive at the airport two hours ahead for domestic departures, and three hours ahead for international departures. At some airports every minute of that two hours will be used going through security and ticket checks. Better have a little extra time than miss your flight because you're standing in line waiting to get through the x-ray machine.

2. Be absolutely sure you have a current photo ID with you.

3. Check with your airline regarding what objects you may carry on with you. The list of objects that are being confiscated changes, but in the recent past has included such things as pocketknives, scissors, nail clippers, combustible fluids.

4. Unless you have special needs, no unticketed persons will be allowed to pass through security. You'll have to say your good-byes before then.

5. Pack light. The more you carry with you, the more time may be needed to scrutinize your belongings. It's a good idea to pack smaller items (socks, lingere, underwear, etc.) together in lightweight mesh or plastic bags. That way, if your suitcase is inspected, these items won't get flung about. Also, this packing method helps you easily rebalance luggage should you find one of your bags is too heavy. Airline charges for extra weight can be very expensive. Also, be aware that some airlines are now charging additional fees for more than one checked piece of luggage.

Try Magellan's for great packing aids and organizers.

6. All types of electronic gear are being checked closely.

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