Travel can be stressful at any time of year, but even more so during the holidays with so many more people traveling. If you’ll be doing any sort of holiday travel, there are steps you can take to make your trip as stress-free as possible.

While you can’t avoid flight delays, weather, or other people, if you follow the holiday travel tips below, including having the right luggage, you’ll enjoy your experience a whole lot more.

Planning Ahead: The Key to Smooth Travel

Travel planning is essential for a smooth trip, especially during the hectic holiday season.

Booking Essentials

Early travel planning is key during the holidays. Consider pre-booking your airport parking space and looking for other ways for advance check-ins to save time, such as doing a pre-flight check-in and getting your flight boarding pass on your phone.

If you’re wondering how far in advance you should book a rental car, you should do so
while booking your flight. Do this as soon as possible so you don’t risk not being able to get a car.

Try to always book direct flights to lessen your chances of missing a connection along the way. And if you’re in close enough proximity to your destination, forgo planes altogether and opt for a train or bus instead.

Choosing Off-Peak Travel Days

If your schedule allows, avoid the busiest travel days for flights, which are December 22, 23, and 26. Instead, travel during less popular days and times, including the holiday itself, to avoid crowds and potential delays or overbooked flights.

Another way to avoid crowds and extra stress is to fly out of alternate airports.

Packing Smart: Ensuring You Have Everything You Need

First, avoid packing at the last minute. You’ll end up with a chaotic scene leaving the
house and more bags than you need to be traveling with. You’ll also be more likely to
forget something important.

Second, pack smart by efficiently packing carry-on luggage and using travel accessories to help you stay organized and make your travels convenient.

The Art of Carry-On Packing

When packing carry-on luggage, maximizing space and ensuring you have room for all
your essentials is important. Follow these tips to get the most out of your luggage when traveling:
· Ensure your carry-on meets the size requirements for your airline.
· Bring clothes that can be layered, maximizing each item and avoiding packing
extra clothes you don’t need.
· Pack shoes that are versatile and comfortable. Shoes are bulky and take up a lot of
space, so the less pairs you bring, the better.
· Roll clothes instead of folding to pack more items into tighter spaces.

Travel Accessories to Enhance Your Journey

Make packing and traveling even easier with the right travel accessories. If there’s one
accessory we consider a must-have, it’s packing cubes. They help you stay organized
during your trip and keep your clothes from wrinkling. Once you see how useful they are, you won’t travel without them again.

Navigating Common Travel Challenges

In addition to booking as much as possible in advance and ensuring you have the right
luggage and pack efficiently, you’ll want to be prepared to handle common travel
challenges you may face.

Anticipating and Overcoming Problems

While you can’t always avoid all problems when traveling, you can anticipate them in
advance so you can overcome them with, hopefully, less stress.

Depending on your trip, some things you can do to avoid or overcome potential issues
· Confirming reservations
· Packing healthy snacks
· Bringing backup chargers for electronics
· Downloading travel apps
· Being familiar with current TSA rules
· Making copies of travel documents
· Carrying prescriptions in their original bottles

The more prepared you are, the better equipped you’ll be to handle any issues or
unexpected surprises.

Family Travel: Keeping Everyone Happy

Traveling can be stressful, and when traveling as a family, the stresses can quickly lead to kids having meltdowns and grandparents getting cranky. Below are a few family travel tips to help your whole family enjoy a pleasant trip regardless of any snags that may arise.
· Bring items that will help everyone pass the time, from gaming devices for the
kids to books and crosswords for grandparents. Also, bring a portable activity you
can all do together, like a deck of cards.
· Carry light snacks to avoid anyone becoming hangry - and to save money.
· Triple check that you have everything packed for any family members with special
medical needs, such as prescriptions, an inhaler, EpiPen, etc.

Holiday-Specific Recommendations

When traveling with your family for the holidays, it can be easy to let common travel
stresses ruin your experience. Follow these tips for the holidays to keep the holiday spirit and enjoy your time together.

Making the Most of the Festive Season

These holiday season tips will help you and your family become immersed in the spirit of the holidays and make fond memories, even while traveling.
· Take lots of pics and videos that you can look back on for years to come.
· Buy souvenirs as memorabilia of your fun family adventures.
· Try something new while traveling, like eating new food, going on a hike, or
attending a festival.
· Take time to slow down and enjoy your surroundings so you can be present with
one another.

Remember, holiday travel doesn’t have to be chaotic or stressful. When you’re prepared with the right luggage, bring essentials, pack efficiently, and plan ahead to avoid or navigate potential problems with traveling, you’ll enjoy a successful holiday travel experience.

Prioritize your planning and consider Briggs & Riley's luggage and accessories to elevate your holiday travel game.