August 2, 2022 Travel and holiday icon, Judith Chalmers has become Heathrow Express’ new Chief Smile Officer. The veteran TV presenter has taken on the honorary role to help travellers get their holiday off on the right note. And she’s released a series of tips to help people start their holiday off with a smile. Judith’s new role comes amid the recent boom in demand for a proper holiday. Judith, 86, revealed: “There are so many worries about travel and hold-ups but let’s face it, we all still want to get away.

“There are some things you can do to give yourself the best chance of a smooth and stress-free journey, which is why I’ve teamed up with Heathrow Express to help everyone travel with a smile.

“When you follow these simple tips – you will be able to start your trip on the right note and enjoy every part of your break away.”

Each day, an average of 17,000 passengers use Heathrow Express services. Each journey takes just 15mins from Paddington to London Heathrow (plus a few minutes more to Terminal 5) and aims to be stress-free and full of smiles!

Chief Smile Officer Judith’s best travel tips are:

1) Book early – keep it calm and carefree by booking your train, transfers, and trips nice and early, so there’s no rush or panic come travel day. You’ll have more choice, a better price, and may even get some perks thrown in.

2) Print it out – most tickets have gone digital now, but this often brings a worry that the phone battery will go down, or you can’t find where you saved the documents. Some of us don’t have smartphones either, so bring a paper back up. Print your tickets and release the stress, and take a pic of your passport too…. Just in case!

3) Group leader – when travelling with friends and family, one person will often become the designated leader and keep hold of tickets and boarding passes. It’s wise to double up and keep copies of each other’s vitals. Set up a group chat and share everyone’s boarding passes, passports, accommodation details, booking references, and itinerary, then there are no worries or arguments.

4) Be comfortable – you’re going to be sitting and walking for however long it takes to get to your destination, so you don’t want to do that in tight jeans. Loose, comfy clothing will help you keep that lovely smile!

5) Wrap up – and by this, I don’t mean wear a big coat! I mean bring a pashmina wrap or comfy scarf with you for the journey, as it will stop the draughts from getting to you, and can double up as a pillow. As well, of course, as being a fashion accessory!

6) Be Safe – while most countries no longer have covid procedures in place, you might want to keep hand sanitizer and a mask handy, just to be sure.

7) Stay connected – keep your charger in your hand luggage. Mobile phones weren’t even a thing when I started travelling, but they are certainly absolutely essential now, what with the built-in camera and maps. And if your battery is running low, you don’t want to dig too deep to find the charger.

8) Pack light, use wheels – we’ve all seen the images of cases waiting or their owners in airports, and we’ve all heard horror stories of cases going missing. If possible, travel with just hand luggage and keep it with you. You’ll sail through the airport at the other end too.

9) A little lingo goes a long way – before you arrive at your destination, you should at least learn how to say hello, goodbye, and thank you in the local language. Not only will you feel good when chatting to locals or ordering at the bar, but you’ll be spreading a smile too. And there’s nothing nicer than that!

10) Keep little minds busy – if you’re travelling with kids, the best way to keep them quiet is to keep them occupied! A book or tablet to read or play games, an activity pack, or even their favourite snacks in little tubs. Anything to keep them happy will make your journey more smiley!

11) To tourist or not to tourist! – Yes, we are all tourists. But that doesn’t mean we have to stick to tourist restaurants. Take a side street, go off the main strip, and sample food where the locals eat. You’ll generally eat better, cheaper, and more authentically.

12) Travel more – the best way to travel with a smile is to TRAVEL MORE! There’s a big and wonderful world out there, and every destination is another reason to smile!

Mark Eastwood, Commercial Strategy Lead at Heathrow Express commented “We are thrilled to welcome Judith Chalmers OBE to the Heathrow Express team. Every journey on Heathrow Express is important, as it’s the very start and very end of someone’s trip away. Judith has already been on board sharing her tips and her smiles, and we hope they will spread to all passengers who get on board!”

Heathrow Express operates up to 150 non-stop services a day between London Paddington and Heathrow Airport. All trains are fully electric, and passengers enjoy complimentary WiFi, HEx TV, at-seat power, and dedicated luggage space. Business First carriages offer a more private, spacious environment and tables that passengers can work from. The service is the smoothest and swiftest way to get from central London to Heathrow airport.

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