It’s the most wonderful time of the year! The season of 2-hour airport security lines, traffic jams with a car full of kids, and that annual reminder that yes, fruitcake is TSA-approved, but that gravy in your carry-on (looking at you, Chrissy Teigen) is more than 3.4 fluid ounces.
It’s peak travel season, and the weeks of Thanksgiving and Christmas, in particular, will see millions of Americans swarming major transit hubs in order to make it home for the holidays. While some level of chaos is essentially guaranteed, there are a few travel hacks anyone can apply to make the coming festive season a little less stressful.
RELATED: RHOC’s Braunwyn Windham-Burke — Mother of 7 — Reveals How She Travels with her ChildrenTravel at off hours, or even on off days, whenever possible.
Heading to grandma’s house on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving is always going to be a slog. If possible, try to travel at less popular times: Very early in the morning or later at night, instead of in the afternoon or during evening rush hour.
Even better, travel on less popular days, advises AAA. Driving to and from your Turkey Day destination on Wednesday afternoon and Sunday evening, for example, is best avoided. Making the trip on the Monday or Tuesday prior and returning the following Monday should save some traffic headaches. And if you’re flying, you’ll likely find cheaper ticket prices.Arrive to the airport early. Like, really early.
Cautious planners, this is your time to shine. Unexpected delays, like long lines to check baggage or go through security, can add significant time to your trip. The TSA recommends arriving to the airport two hours before your flight for domestic travel and three hours ahead for international trips during the holidays.Don’t pack presents.
For your own peace of mind, it’s a good idea to ship presents ahead to your holiday destination. It will mean less to lug through the airport while sweating in your ski jacket, and less likelihood of incurring an overweight bag fee.And if you must, don’t wrap them.
If, for any reason, the TSA finds a wrapped gift suspicious, they can — and will — unwrap it. Every year, holiday travelers are shocked to find upon opening their suitcases after a flight, that their carefully packaged presen