Holiday Air Travel – How Do I Survive?
This is the question for everyone that travels over the holidays. How do I survive holiday air travel? You may be traveling alone or you may be traveling with your family. Here are some things that you can do to help make the travel go smoothly.
Travel on the holiday.
Airports historically are busiest the day before and the day after a holiday. You can avoid those crowds by traveling on the actual holiday itself. Another advantage of holiday air travel on the actual holiday is a cheaper fare. Many airlines will reduce the fare on the holiday because it is a less desirable date to ply.
Book direct flights
Holiday travel occurs in the winter months in many parts of the world. As a result, there is the real possibility of flight delays because of weather. Delays caused by weather can interfere with connecting flights. Book direct flights whenever possible. Some flights may encounter delays, but you will arrive at your destination. If you must book a connecting flight make sure to allow for adequate time at the connecting airport. consider the possibility of a flight delay.
Day of Travel
Prepare ahead! Think through all that needed for comfortable holiday air travel and bring those things with you.
Arrive 2 hours ahead
Arrive early for your flight. The check-in and security process takes more time on during peak travel times. Avoid additional stress by allowing yourself enough time to get through security and to your gate.
Print Boarding Passes at home
Boarding passes should be printed at home or saved as a photo on your phone. You will avoid a line and more time at the airport by printing your boarding passes at home.
Know what TSA allows you to bring
Check the TSA website before traveling to get the latest list of items that are allowed on the airplane. Water is one of the most common items that cause delay. Be sure that water bottles are empty before going through security checkpoints. Be prepared to take off your shoes and coat, place laptops in a separate bin and place all liquids in a 1-quart clear bag. Once through security, gather your items and move away from the security area to reassemble your belongings.
Gifts must be Unwrapped
Plan to wrap your gifts when you arrive at your destination. TSA does not allow wrapped gifts through security.
You can bring non-liquid items to the airport for your flight. Check the TSA website for the items that are allowed through security. Having your own snacks allows for you to move quickly to your gate and keep you nourished and comfortable on the plane.
On the Plane
Comfort items are very important for relaxing holiday air travel. Remember your headphones, travel pillow, and blanket or sweater
Sanitize your seat area
Bring sanitizing wipes to reduce the risk of illness as a result of travel. Airplanes are cleaned between flights by removing garbage from the seats but they are not sanitized in any way. Bring your own sanitizing wipes for wiping down the area around to reduce germs. Seat trays, arm rests, screen buttons, air vent and light controls are all places that are frequently touched and could have germs.
Bring things to occupy your time
Plan for activities to keep you busy while on the plane. Download movies or books before boarding. Magazines and books are also great ways to pass the time. If you have children traveling with you be sure they have activities to do.
Keep your cool
Airlines do their best to have on time departures. If you are delayed on the tarmac it is important to keep your cool. Your comfort items, food, and activities will help pass the time. Be kind to the flight attendants. They have no control over the delays. Showing kindness to the flight staff may be reflected back with perks to make your delay a little easier.
Once you Arrive
Mark your luggage
All black bags look alike on the baggage carousel. Tie a couple colored ribbons on the handle or attach a colorful luggage tag to make your suitcase easy to spot when it arrives.
Inform your transportation of your arrival
If you have a friend or relative picking you up, have them wait in the cell phone lot to avoid adding to the congestion at the airport. When the baggage carousel begins to deliver luggage is a good time to have them start driving to pick you up.
Happy Holidays and travel stress-free!
I hope this article has been helpful to you. Please leave a comment with your tips for stress-free holiday air travel.