How to Handle Holiday Travel Hassles

Holiday travel is the busiest travel time of the year.  The increased crowds and potential for weather related delays can turn a happy holiday season into a headache if you don’t plan ahead.  Here are some tips to make your holiday travel a little easier.

Arrive early and check in ahead of time. 

Try to get to the airport at least 1 1/2 hours ahead of time for domestic flights and 2 hours for international flights.  Some airports won’t check in your bags if you are within 45 minutes of your flight, so make sure you know the required check in times for your airport.  Checking in online can save you from having to stand in line, and pre-paying for your baggage fees can save you a few dollars per bag.  You can print your boarding pass at home and then all you have to do is take your bags to the airline baggage drop.

Trak a Line

Some airports offer the Trak a Line system where you submit your flight time and e-mail address and you will get updates about security wait times.  It’s a great tool and you’ll know if one security area is faster or where the delays are.  Check your airport website to see if they offer this information service or one like it.  I used it for the Thanksgiving week and was able to check the system on the ride over from our park and fly lot. It saved us 15 minutes by knowing which side of the airport to use for security.

Will your carry on fit?

With all of the baggage fees these days more and more people are using carry on bags to save money.  But there are a lot of times when passengers overfill their bags to the point that they won’t fit in the overhead bin.  Be sure to check your airline’s bag measurements (including wheels and handles) and you will save yourself time and aggravation from trying to cram your bag in the overhead bin.

The Secure Flight Program

As of November 1, 2010, there is a new requirement for flights in the US and flights coming to the US.  Passengers must add their full name, date of birth and gender to their ticket information to comply with these new requirements. For more information about the program, go here.

Have a great stress free flight!

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