Monday, December 1, 2014

Making Holiday Travel Less Scary

Happy December everyone!

I have a love/hate relationship with December. 

For one it means old man winter is really here.
Two, the pressure of Christmas is mind blowing and it makes people freak out.
Three, my birthday (30th)...worse time to have a birthday EVER. 

I have a general rule in life and that is do not focus on the negative things in life - they will bring you down faster than a sinking ship.

So the reasons why I LOVE December are:

The spirit of Christmas.  Give with no expectation of receiving.  
Use the Holy holiday as a chance to teach your children about the spirit of giving and the true meaning of Christmas.

It is always a month that brings reflection: I find that I always look back on the year to replay the things the universe has given to me and taken away.  Good times had and memories that I rather no take with me onto the next year.

Family.  Good God I love my family.  Holidays around our homes mean that the all the kids, cousins, aunts, uncles and Grandparents will be together as much as possible.  Whether it be on Christmas Day, hunting, shopping or just celebrating life.  

The joy of searching for the perfect gift for someone who does not expect anything from you.  And the relief of knowing that my family does not do lavish gifts....thank God!

And my last and sorta most favorite reasons for loving December is  that the new year is almost over and that means VACATION time!  
We always take our trips in February because that is the most miserable month of the entire year!  

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Lets talk about December travels do's and dont's.

Are any of you dreading booking your plan tickets for the entire family? Is the pain in your gut you get from seeing the price per ticket still with you from last year?

Keep this in mind when searching for tickets:
The average airfare for domestic travel around December 25 is $433.  To get the best deals make your booking during the first week of December up until the 10th which will get your prices about 6% below average before prices shoot up again.  Booking in advance is not always best because the people who booked back in July actually paid the highest holiday prices at 27% more than the rest of us.
If you are going international over the holidays it is best to book well in advance.  Around the 25th the average airfare is $1,251 but if you booked back in July the lowest fares came in around 16% less than the average price.  And if you wait last minute...well you will be paying about 40% higher than the average price.  
It pays to be an early bird.

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How you can make the airport experience more pleasurable in the midst of chaos.  
Check in early and allow extra time.  These two things are CRUCIAL!
By all means take advantage of the 24 hr in advance check-in offered by most airlines.  This reduces the risk of you being bumped from your flight if you run into a delay or if your flight is overbooked.  
Allowing extra time is sorta a no brainer.  Things pop up all the time that will add minutes onto your travels.  Try to anticipate these things to avoid severe stress in public places....never a good thing!

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Know your flights!
I cannot stress this enough.  Winter weather is a scary and inconvenient. We all use smartphones these days so download the app that will allow you to stay up to date.  The worst feeling in the entire world is when you miss a connecting flight that throws off your entire itinerary so make sure you have an idea of the layout of the airport because you certainly do not want to spend half your time trying to figure out where to do.  You can also talk to your flight attendant because she may be able to let the other gate know you're on your way and possibly let you off first. 

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Parking/Shuttles
I hate searching for a parking spot when I am trying to make a flight....the most frustrating thing ever!  So a simple but not always possible solution to this is to reserve a parking spot.  Some airports allow it but you can check and make the reservations here for parking and shuttles.

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Gifts
When you fly with gifts understand one thing: they will be opened for inspection.  So do yourself a favor and TSA and do not wrap them...wait until you arrive at your destination or just put them in bags if small enough.  Also, TSA does not bend the rules on their carry-on restrictions just because it is the holidays so keep in mind that the bottle of perfume for your mother needs to be in your checked luggage.
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Luggage
As always I suggest only packing a carry-on.  But again may not be possible with the gifts you are bringing.  

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Traveling by car???
Follow these three simple steps: 

1.  Prep your car.
This means everything from packing the night before, gassing up without the whole family in the car AND packing an emergency winter car kit.  Check your oil and tires before setting out on a road trip always!

2.  Know your route.
Make sure you know where you're driving and that all roads are open.  If driving to or through the mountains some roads become impassable in the winter so check the state's DOT website for road conditions and closures.  

3. Theft
When you pack the gifts in your car pack them so they are not visibly seen from the outside.  The holidays are a difficult time for a lot of people so do not tempt people to steal.  

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They are a great way to book ALL your travel needs from airfare, car rental, hotels, event tickets etc.  So let them take the stress off your shoulders this holiday season by booking through them!
866-582-9579

1 comment:

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Thank you so very much for taking the time to visit my blog! Traveling is very dear to me and sharing my travels and desires with you makes my heart smile. I want to hear all about your adventures because sharing travel stories is the root to all inspiration. Also, any suggestions you may have on how I can improve this blog - I am all ears!!
Smiles,
Allie xoxo