The Thursday edition of the Wall Street Journal's Personal Journal section had several good tips for frequent travelers. Here are a few:
* If you fly coach and prefer the aisle seat, you might want to either pay for early boarding or pay to check your bag. Airlines are fine-tuning the boarding process. Several, such as United and Delta, are now boarding passengers by window first, followed by middle and then aisle seats. So if you're an aisle seat ticket holder, you'll probably find less room available in the overhead bins.
* American Airlines passengers should preprint boarding passes or download them to a smartphone. American is using a new randomized boarding process, and checking in online may give you a better chance of being assigned to an earlier boarding group at the airport vs. those who check in at the airport.
* Mobile apps for travelers can help you snag a great last-minute hotel or rental car deal. For example, the Journal's Timothy W. Martin writes that "Some hotel chains, eager to fill empty beds, offer special discounts to travelers who book while in town," which a GPS-enabled smartphone or tablet enables you to do.