Inclement weather, delays and crowds – oh my! Traveling during the busy holiday season doesn’t have to weigh on your nerves or purse strings. While some things you can’t control, by following these seven holiday travel tips, you can still be well on your way to finding a boat- or plane-load of joy in your stocking.
- Avoid peak travel days of the week. At Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s, traveling on the actual holidays is almost always cheaper than the days leading up to them. Your travel professional can help in finding you the best value.
- Oh, the weather outside is frightful. Weather can be unpredictable and turn ugly on a dime, so leave plenty of time between you and your destination. Check with your carrier prior to heading to the airport, and keep their app handy for gate changes and updates. Know the weather report where you’re headed, so you can pack appropriately. Getting stuck in Rockefeller Plaza in the snow with no mittens is certainly no fun.
- It’s a mad, mad world. Being caught in holiday traffic can be a nightmare – literally! Leave plenty of time to get to the airport, and consider taking a shuttle, car service or public transportation. Trust us; you’ll thank us later!
- If you’re flying, choose the right seat and flight. All airplane seats are NOT created equal – and we’re not just talking first class versus coach. Check seat and plane reviews on SeatGuru. Spending a little extra money to enjoy more leg room, priority boarding access or even lounge access can also go a long way on the ease factor. As far as timing, flying out as early in the day as possible usually means less delays.
- Bring comfort items for you and your travel mates. No, we’re not talking your Sherpa throw blanket and bunny slippers, but we do suggest a good book or noise canceling earphones with your favorite tunes, a sleep mask and pillow if you have a longer flight and your favorite healthy snacks. Wearing comfortable clothing completes the Zen you’re seeking.
- Keep it small. If you can, skip checking baggage and instead bring a carry-on to save yourself the stress of a lost suitcase. Whether you check or carry on, don’t pack gift-wrapped presents, or airport security will have a field day with them. Consider shipping gifts ahead of time, or if you must bring them, a collapsible gift bag that can be used to wrap upon arrival works nicely.
- Above all else, stay positive. Studies show that keeping a cheerful and optimistic attitude allows you to cope better with stressful situations. You’ve got this!
Avoid the stress and let a travel professional help you on your next holiday outing. A good travel agent, like those you’ll find at Nexion, can secure the perfect package for you that includes the best airline seats, hotel rooms and rental cars.
Written by Suzanne A. Harbison, Marketing Manager at Nexion LLC
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