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Cramped airline seats. . . long car rental lines. . . congested expressways. . . lost hotel reservations. . . Yikes! It's a litany of horror familiar to any traveler. And there's more to come: Despite the growth of electronic commerce we're hitting the road more often. Is there any way of making trips more pleasurable? If the experiences of veteran travelers is any guide, the answer is yes. Let's introduce our experts, all of whom make close to 100 trips per year: Leil Lowndes is a New York-based speaker who keynotes conventions and leads training seminars. John Tschohl is president of Service Quality Institute, a Minneapolis-based consulting firm. James Feldman is a Chicago speaker who, as "Doctor Travel," gives seminars on "The Cure for the Common Trip." Here's what they say:
Prepare For Success
Savvy travelers plan a successful trip long before they leave. "I always keep a travel bag handy with items that I know I'll need on any trip," says Lowndes. If you grab this bag on your way out the door you won't be caught short in mid-flight. Common prepacked items include business cards, aspirin, vitamins and prescriptions drugs, breath mints, a small umbrella, extra pens, an alarm clock, a toothbrush and toiletries including small bottles of shaving cream or cologne. Finally: A light weight robe to throw on if you need to run to the hotel vending machine in the evening. "To decide what should go on your own list, keep track of everything you use for two weeks prior to a typical trip," says Lowndes. Keep the list in your travel bag, then check each item before you go.
And pack your …