Do Not Pass Go – Unless You Have the Proper Credentials

So, as one who is EXTREMELY anal retentive when it comes to travel and travel preparations, you would not think that I would be ill prepared for a trip.  But, that was the case on one of my most recent excursions.  I purchased the plane ticket for this trip more than four months in advance.  Arranged my accommodations with a travel provider five months in advance.  Had my suitcase packed and ready to go at least two weeks in advance.  Printed copies of my itinerary and local information one week in advance and printed my boarding passes 24 hours in advance.  Yet and still, somehow, I arrived at the airport, crossed through security and was prepared to board the plane with NO PASSPORT.  Yikes!!  Yes, that is right, I said it, no passport.  Where was it?  In my everyday bag/purse, which was in the trunk of my car, parked in the off-site parking lot.

So, how did I come to realize that I was traveling sans passport?  Well, like any female who has consumed a gallon of water throughout the day, I had to make a run to the ladies room.  Just as I was prepared to leave, a small voice in my head said, passport- make sure you have it.  I tore through all of my carry-on items and didn’t see it.  In instant I went from cute chica with stacked sandals, sundress and floppy beach hat in hand to frantic chick sweating bullets and looking crazy.  Though I missed my first flight (and there were no more departing for the day), all was not lost.  I was actually planning to spend the night at my sunny american destination, prior to continuing to my caribbean destination.  So, I was able to get on a flight departing at 6a.m. the following day and make my connecting flight to the caribbean.  The hotel where I planned to spend the night canceled my appointment with no issue and I actually shared my connecting flight with the hair diva– Diana Ross.

Bottom line— make sure you have all of your documentation in hand before you drive to the airport, park the car and proceed to the airport terminal.  I dodged a bullet this time because I was staying overnight in my connecting city.  However, had I not checked for the passport in the ladies room and my flight to the caribbean had been on the same day, that would have been a VERY expensive mistake.

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