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Essential tips to help you navigate crowded airports with ease

Essential tips to help you navigate crowded airports with ease
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Your suitcase may be packed, but that doesn't mean you're fully prepared for your holiday travel. No one can fully prepare for the stress that comes with it.

But thankfully, there are simple things you can do to take some of that stress off your shoulders. No, you can't change the long lines and crowded airports, but you can change how you navigate through them.

That's why anyone who's planning on traveling this year needs these three crucial apps. We're assuming you've already found a great deal on a flight, so these apps will help you steer clear of those headache-causing zones until you've arrived at your destination.

1. Get gate information and status updates

If you're stuck in an unfamiliar airport and don't know where to go, you'll need some help getting around.

Maybe you're just hanging out between flights. Or maybe you're killing some time before takeoff. Either way, you don't want to risk getting lost.

Before your trip, download GateGuru on your phone (Apple, Android; free). Besides offering real-time flight status reports, security wait times and other gate information, GateGuru offers a complete look at airports themselves.

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View a list of airport restaurants, or check out the airport's shops and services. The app even includes more than 35,000 reviews and tips with 10,000 photos from fellow travelers.

Need help finding something? You can find your way around with airport terminal maps for more than 200 locations across the world. Not only that, you can use GateGuru to reserve airport rental cars at a discount.

2. Prevent jet lag using light from your phone

While traveling from one time zone to another, it's a good possibility you'll arrive with jet lag. This common side effect of traveling is caused by a disrupted circadian clock or the "internal clock" that keeps us all on a day-night cycle.

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