If you're one of the 40 million or so Americans who travel at Thanksgiving, you know what a hassle it
can be. But with a plan in hand you can ease some of the stress and strain by
following these dos and don'ts.
Do Plan Your Flight Early
In late summer or early fall, sign up for airline price notifications. Be sure to
include flights for surrounding airports, because even if it means a longer
drive from your home or to your final destination, the savings could be well
worth it. Keep in mind that early bird discounts are often first posted on
Twitter or Facebook, so if you are not a social media fan, now might be a good
time to start.
Don't Travel on the Busiest Days
The day before Thanksgiving and the Sunday after are the busiest travel days of the year. Avoid
the chaos by flying out on Tuesday, or get a really good deal by leaving home on
Thanksgiving morning. You can save 15-20 percent on airfare and still make it
in time for dinner. If your schedule allows, return home on Friday when
everyone else heads to the mall for Black Friday deals, or Monday when the
airport crowds have tapered off.
Don't Over Pack
Since most airlines charge for checked bags, pack light and carry it on. Keep in mind that
everyone else will have the same idea so take a bag that's small enough to shove
under the seat if the overhead bins are full. Consider shipping bulky items or
early holiday presents ahead of time vs. lugging them onto the plane.
Do Put Your Smart Phone to Use
Everything you need is right at your fingertips! Keep track of your flight status, parking, weather alerts,
airport volume, gate changes, restaurants, and last-minute shopping deals by
loading up with all the relevant apps. Many airlines are using Twitter to keep
passengers up-to-date about last minute changes, another good reason to be a
Do Consider a Plan B - Driving
Driving to your destination can save you time, allow you to pack more, and eliminate airport
headaches. It does, however, come with its own challenges. Highways, especially
around major metropolitan areas, can become very congested, and the weather can
turn dicey that time of year. Follow some of the same advice above: plan ahead,
leave early and use technology like your smart phone or GPS system to stay
Don't Forget to Secure Your Home Before Leaving
Do not post your travel plans on social media sites. Stop mail, newspapers, and
deliveries and use timers to operate lights at various times throughout the
house and day. You can ease your worries further by keeping an eye on your home
using a web-based home security system that allows you to check your home via
phone or laptop.
Happy safe travels and have a wonderful Thanksgiving from our family to yours!