Some of the busiest travel days in the U.S. are almost upon us, and while you may not have started packing yet, you can still prepare.
The Federal Aviation Administration released its tips for staying safe on Tuesday, and even frequent travelers will benefit from a refresher.
Pay Attention to Your Flight Attendants
Pay attention to the flight attendants during the safety briefing and read the safety briefing card. It could save your life in an emergency.
Unless you fly very, very frequently, the pre-flight safety instructions are not a time to scroll through Twitter or begin your in-flight video binging. Flight attendants are trained to protect passengers, but they can't do it without your help.
Leave Your Bags (and the Cannoli)
The biggest tip in the event of an airplane evacuation: Leave your bags and personal items behind.
“Your luggage is not worth your life,” the FAA writes on its website. “Passengers are expected to evacuate an airplane within 90 seconds. You do not have time to grab your luggage or personal items. Opening an overhead compartment will delay evacuation and put the lives of everyone around you at risk.”
Leave Hazardous Materials at Home
This seems like it would be an obvious one, but there are items you may not think of as hazardous that should not go in your luggage.
Lithium batteries for one, and aerosols for another. Check the FAA's complete list of hazardous items before you leave for the airport.
And Hazardous Tech, Too
If you've still got a Samsung Galaxy Note 7, don't take it to the airport.
Wear Your Seatbelt
When you're in your seat, keep the seatbelt fastened. It's a simple step that will keep you safe in the event of unexpected turbulence (and it's often unexpected).
Protect Young Children
If you're flying with a young child in your lap, don't expect to be able to protect them in the event of rough air—let alone an emergency. The FAA has a video that shows how to install a child safety seat on a plane.