It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas, everywhere you look! Decorations, presents, snow, and even crowds are all part of of the festivities.
While snow and crowds are part of the holiday fun while you through a trail of Christmas lights, they have an entirely different effect when you're trying to get to your loved ones.
By using these tips, you'll be relaxed as you travel this holiday season.
Pack light and ship your gifts. You should pack a carry-on suitcase only. This will help you avoid long lines to check in luggage. It will also allow you to keep your items with you and take action more quickly should you have any flight schedule changes.
You will save a great deal of frustration by shipping your gifts. You won't need to worry about being over the weight limit or having them unwrapped if they're inspected.
Book your parking ahead of time. Instead of worrying because Lot C is full, you can relax knowing that you have a guaranteed parking place. If your airport doesn't offer this service, use an off-site parking lot. These lots are often cheaper than parking at the airport and offer a shuttle service from your car to the airport. Often they offer additional services like oil changes, car inspections, and even boarding for your pet.
Think "early". You're used to arriving at least two hours prior to your flight departure, but you may need to arrive even earlier than that in order to get through security.
Equally important is scheduling your flight as early in the day as possible. Statistically speaking, early flights are more likely to depart on time than ones later in the day. Will this mean you will "rope drop" the airport? Yes. Will it be worth it? Yes!
Have backup plans. You don't want to think about all the things that can go wrong when you're traveling, but things can, and do, go wrong. (Hello, Murphy!)
Your first and best backup plan is travel insurance. Look for policies that have Cancel For Any Reason (CFAR), lost baggage, and trip delay/interruption/cancellation coverage. You've made a financial investment in your holiday travel, and you'll want to protect it. Travel insurance allows you to do just that.
If your flight gets canceled, you'll want to know the alternate ways to get to your destination. Can you fly to and through a different city? Are there trains or buses that can get you to your destination? By thinking about this ahead of time, you'll have a plan of action if you need it.
And finally, have a true "Plan B" just in case your vacation turns into a "stay-cation." By having a few fun activities or a local hotel in mind, you won't feel like you missed out as much.
Pack your patient pants. There are so many things that are out of control when you travel. But the one thing that is always within your control is your attitude. Flight delay? You can try something new that you've always wanted to try while you wait. Flight cancelation? Be kind while you work with the ticketing agent or travel advisor. I promise you, they want you to get to the destination just as much as you! Maybe even more.
We hope these tips help spark ideas of how you can have a great travel experience during this holiday season.
We wish you well. We wish you safe and happy travels. And we can't wait to see you with your loved ones under the Christmas Star!