You could be going to Grandma’s or on a grand getaway with your ‘better half’, but no matter where you’re headed for the holidays, the first thing to pack is a good attitude, says Twist Travel Magazine Editor-in-Chief Keryn Means.
“A smile will always get you farther than a cranky attitude. Stay positive, stay helpful, especially if you have delays or cancellations at the airport, because you helping them will make them want to help you more than you screaming at them or telling them what a horrible job they're doing,” Means says.
Maybe you're not the one traveling, but it’s your parents.
If your mom or dad don’t fly often and have medical issues, they may need a reminder or two, says Means. She explains, “Those who have diabetes or traveling with syringes need to make sure that they're bringing a doctor's note. If you have allergies, you need to also make sure that you're wearing your medical bracelet and also be carrying your Epipen in case of emergencies.”
If you are traveling, especially alone, share your itinerary with a loved one back home and, Means says, “Make copies of your passport and your credit card and other important documents. You want to keep a copy of these at home for someone to access in case yours are lost or stolen.”
Otherwise, try to keep your personal information private. Means explains, “One way to stay safe during the holiday season is to use luggage tag covers or to put your office address on your luggage tag instead of your home address.” If you don’t have an office address, think about using your email address instead, says Means.
Means says this time of year it is critical to check in for flights as soon as the airlines let you.
“Checking in early can really make a difference whether you're going to get on that flight or not, as more airlines are overbooking flights, and making sure that your seat is secure is pretty much essential at this point,” Means explains.
Plus, getting to the airport early isn’t as painful as it used to be, she says. Means explains, “It's not so bad being at the airport anymore because they're basically like big malls. Just do a little bit of shopping and go grab a great meal.”
[SPECIAL SECTION: 3 On Your Side stories]