There’s so much to learn in the travel world. Much like the final play of a football game, or the last act of a great play – all knowledge is put to the test, every time you step into an airport, onto a plane, into a hotel or even well before- when booking travel. Here are five things frequent travelers never do at any step of the process…

Use The General Security Lane…

There are so many ways to bypass the general security lane, even when flying economy. Frequent flyers do not stand in this agonizing line- ever. If you want to be a smart traveler, like the world’s best frequent flyers look into programs like: CLEAR, TSA PreCheck or Global Entry. Of course, if you fly enough with one single airline, you’ll earn the right to use the priority lane for free.

Forget To Select An Airline Seat…

There’s a long standing myth that not selecting a seat is the best way to get an upgrade. That’s false. Not selecting a seat will get you the worst seat, in economy. Frequent flyers don’t do that. Frequent flyers always carefully select a seat and look to improve their seat assignment by using tools like ExpertFlyer to see when better ones become available. THEN they hope for upgrades.

Pay For Travel Using A Debit Card…

It goes without saying that frequent travelers earn a lot of miles for their flying, but the best ones also earn a ton of credit card points, which they can convert into frequent flyer miles. Paying with a debit card? Yeah, frequent flyers don’t do that. With a debit card you miss out on the up to 5X points per dollar spent that some credit cards offer, in addition to the airline miles you actually earn.

Stand In The Wrong Boarding Zone…

Frequent travelers hate crowded boarding areas. For that reason, they never, ever stand around the boarding gate when it’s not their turn. If you want to make friends with frequent flyers, you shouldn’t either. Frequent flyers generally board first, or board last– staying out of sight until it’s their turn. Gotta keep things orderly, in a chaotic world.

Book With Travel Sites Versus Direct With Airline Or Hotel…

Whenever possible, frequent travelers never book using online booking sites. They know that when things go wrong– it’s much easier to deal directly with the airline or hotel you booked with. They also know that things like upgrades and perks are far more common when booking direct. Be smart like frequent travelers and book direct, assuming you can get the same price.

Check A Bag…

Ok- never might be strong, but again, whenever possible frequent flyers do not check bags. Instead, frequent flyers become expert packers, buy sophisticated luggage and save countless hours checking and waiting for bags at each juncture. They can also assure their underwear will make it to their destination, which is not guaranteed for anyone else.

Make A Reservation Without Monitoring It…

Most travelers pay for their hotel or airline ticket and then carry on living their lives. Frequent travelers don’t do that. Frequent travelers use apps and planning tools to stay on top of reservations. After all, schedule changes, hotel cancellations, aircraft changes and other crazy things happen all the time. Frequent travelers know before everyone else and they fix it.

Order A Special Meal In Economy…

Dietary restrictions aside- frequent travelers never order special meals while seated in economy. Why? Because they can guarantee they won’t receive an upgrade. Special meals move virtually any frequent flyer from the front of the upgrade list to the back. Knowing this, the best travelers eat before or after their flight, or bring snacks along to self cater. You can do that…

How many do you do?