Are you planning to travel during the holidays this year? Then you’ll want to be sure to check out these Christmas travel tips. You’ll be able to make the holiday season more enjoyable and less stressful by planning ahead. Whether you’re flying in a plane, sailing on a cruise ship, or driving across the country on a road trip, these tips will come in handy this season.
Obviously if you’re flying, you want to make sure you get to the airport early. Typically you’ll want to get to your local airport at least 2-3 hours before your flight, perhaps an hour or two earlier if you’re traveling internationally.
But during the holiday season, there’s a larger amount of people traveling, so you should probably add an additional hour or two onto those time frames. It’s better (and cheaper) to be too early for your flight, than too late. You don’t want to miss it and have to re-book another flight. Plus you never can be sure how long security checkpoints will take.
You’ll also want to pack smartly for your flight. Anything large that you want to take with you, you probably would be better off shipping to your destination (if possible) rather than checking it as cargo baggage.
You’ll have to be aware of the liquids rule for flying too. This means things like snow globes for example, can’t be taken on the plane. If you want to take those on your trip, it’d be smarter to ship them ahead of time if possible, or wait and purchase them when you arrive at your destination if you haven’t already bought your snow globes. Anything else that’s small and fragile you’ll want to wrap carefully and place in your carry-on or seat bag, preferably surrounded by additional padding such as a sweater.
As for cruises or traveling by ship, I’m not that familiar with that travel method, but I would imagine similar rules and tips apply. Obviously boats are slower than planes, so you’ll need additional clothing, food, etc. for the trip. Similarly, you’ll need to do this for a road trip too. Like with flying, highways will likely be more crowded than usual during the holidays, so you should leave earlier than you normally wood. Say it takes you 3 hours to get to your destination and you want to get there by 12:00 PM. Instead of leaving around 8:30 – 9:00 AM, you might consider leaving around 7:00 AM to give yourself a bit of cushion due to traffic.
The same tips apply for carrying large or breakable items too. Though sometimes packages can be delayed or damaged, so make sure you use way more padding than necessary, but don’t wrap it too tightly. You might also consider taking your fragile items with you in the car or on the boat if possible, since you’re more likely to be able to account for bumps in the road/waves.
If you’re headed out on the freeways this season, don’t forget your GPS, whether you have a dedicated device or are using your cell phone. And if you’re going somewhere with spotty cell reception, it might help to pick up a paper map at a gas station or rest area. You can also print one through Google, Bing, etc.
Hopefully you’ll make it to your Christmas travel destination with time to spare and with everything you need for an extra happy holiday season!