Eating at the airport when traveling frequently is more of a chore than a pleasurable experience. The lines are long, the food is overpriced and time is limited. Choices mostly range from fast food to faster food, but there’s ways to make the trip easier.

Be Prepared

Make a pit stop before the airport at a convenience store. The larger bags of candy and other snacks are significantly more expensive at the airport. Grab a couple of snacks and toss them in the top of your carry-on. Also, any single serve medicines to nurse a hangover are worth a grab if in need.

Save Receipts and Use a Credit Card

Food costs during travel are expenses that can be deductions at tax time. Carry a letter-sized envelope in sandwich bag in one of the outside pockets of your carry-on to stash receipts and put it in right away. There’s no way to find that tiny slip of paper later mixed in with the rest of your stuff.

Avoid cash and use credit cards when eating in airports. It creates a second (more accurate) record of your spending come tax time and keeps your cash wherever it’s stashed. Carrying small amounts of cash avoids unwanted attention from the prying eyes and hands of the TSA.

Airline Lounges

Take advantage of those airline perks and join the lounge clubs they offer. Free (alcoholic) drinks and snack foods are usually complimentary. There are usually work stations to charge your devices and fire off emails before boarding. 

Eat Before the Security Checkpoint

In most large airports finding a spot to grab a quick bite after the security checkpoint is no problem but smaller, regional airports are usually very limited past security. More often than not, eating before the security checkpoint is optimal as you don’t know what may be available and going back through security is never a good idea.

Eat Light

Traveling is tiring and eating large, heavy meals will only drag a person down further. Skip the burger and fries and go with salads, fruits and yogurts. After all, who wants to fell bloated and gassy right before sliding into a small seat in a sealed tube for a couple hours?

To Drink or Not to Drink?

Drinking alcohol before a flight splits travelers right down the middle. Some travelers can’t step foot on a plane without liquid courage but spend an hour on YouTube watching drunk passenger videos and you may skip alcohol altogether. Should you choose to drink, know your limits and remain respectful of fellow passengers.