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Tag Archives: airports

Holiday Travel Tips

16 Nov

 

The holiday season is upon us and with that comes time with friends and family, lots of food and of course travel. Traveling year round can be as stressful as it is enjoyable but add a holiday in the mix and it becomes that much more intense. I myself have done a good bit of traveling around holidays and here are a few tips I find serve me well:

 

  • Book early and look around- If you know you plan to travel start checking flights ASAP! Generally as the date draws closer, the cost of the flight exponentially increases as the demand is now high. I would recommend booking at least 6 weeks in advance if you can to ensure the best price. Also take some time to check different airlines and third party booking sites for the best deal.

 

  • Try avoiding peak days- When it comes to holidays, some of the busiest days are the two days before or the two days after the actual holiday, this means fares are up, delays are rampant and airport lines are long. Interestingly, the actual holiday is usually much quieter with lower fares to boot. To get a better idea, there are some websites that actually list the best and worst days to travel in terms of fare costs and how busy.

 

  • Avoid peak times- Travel early am or late at night. This is in the same vein as avoiding peak days. Very early or late flights tend to be more rare meaning shorter lines. Very early flights are less likely to be delayed as well. There are also websites that offer some insight as to the best times of day to travel.

 

  • Allow for connections- Many of us have to take connecting flights in order to get to our destination. This is definitely a source of travel induced stress. If the first flight is delayed or the immigration/customs/security lines are long, you can end up missing your next flight which can send the entire trip into a tailspin. Try to book your flights with enough time in between to allow for a smooth connection. This may require a little research into the airports you’ll be traveling through to understand the layout, get info on the wait times etc.

 

  • Plan ahead: check-in online, plan for ride pick up/drop off/ weigh luggage- All in an effort to achieve a nice smooth travel experience, check-in in advance, book rental cars or pick ups in advance and ensure that your luggage and its contents meet the security and airline requirements…IN ADVANCE!

 

  • Be early- They say that Timeliness is next to Godliness…or is it Cleanliness? Anyway, if you leave early you will at the very least arrive on time. I recently traveled out of LAX and LA is infamous for the actual worst traffic. What did I do? I got my Lyft ride to collect me 4 1/2 hours before my flight. I was so early there was no one to check in luggage and I sat at the check in desk for almost an hour, but that was okay I’d rather sit at the gate for two hours than sit anxiously in traffic, lose my mind while checking in and have to run through security and to my gate.

 

  • Pack smart- I try to avoid checking luggage whenever I can because that saves money as well as time (spent waiting for luggage to come off the conveyor belt) and hassle (when it mysteriously doesn’t come off the conveyor belt). If you can’t avoid having checked luggage, remember pack your essentials, versatile clothing and in keeping with baggage policies to avoid issues with overweight or oversize charges and customs hassles.

 

  • Eat well/Bring snacks- Travel can sometimes be long and arduous, you don’t need hangry-ness on top of that. I advise having a nutritious, filling meal before you begin your travels and pack along something to munch on while waiting in lines or on flight. You can of course eat at the numerous overpriced eateries available inside airport terminals , just make sure you stay well fed and hydrated.

 

  • Dress comfortably- I have mentioned this before in my post about dressing for travel,  but comfort is key when traveling. That, and being dressed to run to a gate it you have to. Wear comfortable well fitting clothing and shoes that are simple to remove and replace during security checks.

 

  • Be patient/Prepared for delays- Despite your best efforts to be prepared; on time, appropriately dressed, perfectly packed something can still go wrong. There could be a major delay or flight cancellation, lost luggage or nothing but terrible restaurants in your terminal. Just take a deep breath because this too shall pass.

Thanks for reading, have an awesome day and safe travels.

 

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