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manners MATTER Travel It’s that time of year when most folks want to take that long-awaited vacation. Kids are out of school, the weather is pleasant, and it’s the much-needed break from your daily routine. No matter what your reasons are for travel, whether busi- ness or pleasure, there are always a few snafus that may come up that need to be handled with grace and civility. Karen La Corte is an etiquette and manners expert trained and certi- fied by the Emily Post Institute in Vermont. She has been teaching eti- quette and manners to children and adults for over thirty years. She is also a certified image and fashion consultant. Karen is happy to answer any personal etiquette or image questions you may have by emailing her at 102 BY KAREN LA CORTE A lthough you can’t control some of the difficulties you encounter, like delayed or cancelled flights, you can control how you react. That’s where manners come in. There are three courtesies of travel etiquette that apply whether you are taking the RV trip with the kids or cruising the Caribbean. Respect is the most important. Treat respectfully and be kind to those who are traveling with you, those whom you meet along with way, and those who serve you. Keep your requests reasonable. Asking to switch hotel rooms is fine. Making a scene when all the rooms with an ocean view are booked is not. Don’t leave a negative impression. You are a guest of sorts in another city or country. Avoid littering, confrontations of any degree, or arrogance that things are better back where you are from. Folks take pride in their country, customs and culture. Traveling with family is one thing. Traveling with friends is another. I am very picky when choosing who I travel with. I know who I can be compatible with. I set up a small meeting before the trip to talk about what we all want to see, and do, what time we want to start each day, and how much money we should bring. I suggest we all put in a certain amount of money at the start of the trip and then one person is the “banker.” This person pays for the food, drinks, activities and any other agreed-on items. If we run out of money in our kitty, we all pony up and put more in. If there is money left over at the end of the trip, we divide it equally. It’s the perfect way to make sure it’s fair and no one gets stuck with more expenses than others. This has worked for me whether it’s a trip to Vegas or Europe. Pre-planning any trip makes for stress-free travel. I make a checklist days before I leave. This includes my wardrobe items (including shoes, hat and jewelry), medicines, toiletries including sun- screen, personal or business documents, photo ID, and passport if necessary. I recently took a trip to Hawaii. Since I was flying, I observed a lot both in the airport and on the plane. I will share a few things with you that caught my attention. Make sure you check with the airlines on size limits for carry-on luggage and the number of pieces allowed. Be prepared for security. If you get wanded by a screener, or they go through your carry-on, don’t get upset. It’s their job. Be respect- ful and kind. Remember you can’t be too safe GILROY • MORGAN HILL • SAN MARTIN JUNE/JULY 2018 nowadays when traveling by air. Have your ticket and ID ready. Wait until your boarding time. Find out early which rows board first. Be patient. Be mindful of others waiting as well. Don’t put your luggage or purse on the chair next to you. Leave it open. Don’t talk long or loudly on your cell phone. When boarding, never push ahead of others. Be patient with the elderly or folks with children. Take your backpack or carry-on in your hands in front of you. This helps you avoid bumping into aisle-seat passengers with your bag as you make your way to your seat. Put your bag in the overhead bin, wheels out, and place your smaller bag underneath the seat in front of you. (If you’re sitting in the bulkhead, all bags go up in the bin). If you’re wearing a coat, wait until the end of boarding before your put it in the overhead bin, since it can easily fit into the remaining space. If you want to sleep, reserve a window seat. Be kind about the armrests. It’s an unwritten rule that the middle seat gets both arm- rests. Wear earbuds and keep the volume low when listening to music, watching a movie or playing video games. Always smile and be courteous to your seatmates. Please bring activities to keep your kids busy, like coloring books. If you bring food onboard, make sure that the odors aren’t going to offend others. Be showered with clean clothes. That said, make sure you don’t wear too much perfume or after shave. And while I’m talking about the nose here, don’t change a diaper in a seat. Take the baby to the lavatory. Don’t stay too long in the bathroom. Touching up makeup or doing your hair can wait until you’ve landed. If the person in the aisle seat is sleeping and you need to get out of your row, softly say, “Excuse me,” and if necessary, tap him lightly on the arm. Oh, and my pet-peeve, putting your seat back without regard for those in back of you. Folks could be eating or working on their tray. Treat the flight attendants with respect. They are not servants and work extremely hard to make your trip a pleasant one. Don’t drink too much. Alcohol hits harder at highe []Y\ˈY\\HBZ[[][H[][[]Y[ˈHœ[ޙH[HZ\\˂\ۈ[[Z][[] [\&\\™\[KH]Y[ HۜY\]HوH\[[K[[\Y][[[[ۈB^H] Z[KY[H[x&]HXYHH]Y[܈][\]]YH[[Z[ YH][BZ^K