Dear Fellow Holiday Traveler:

The roads will be packed, the airports busy, the flights at capacity and the trains full. Most all of us are going somewhere for a reason, whether to celebrate the holidays with family and friends or some to just unplug and escape for a while. No matter the purpose of travel, we have to remember that we are all going together in some way.

We have all been in those travel situations where frustrations can rise, haven’t we? You know where one thing leads to another like long lines and delays and people closer to your personal space than any other time in the year. It can lead to a lot of worry and impatience, irritation and lack of calm in most situations. So how do we get around that? Well unfortunately, the lines will still be there, the delays will happen and your personal space will be embarked upon but how we approach this is important.

Most experts of human behavior conclude that if you know the inevitable is well, inevitable and prepare for the worst and hope for the best, you will be able to deal better with what is at hand. If you know that everything is going to be that way because it is every year, plan for it strategically and mentally.

Here are some tips for making your travel a little less stressful:

  • No matter your mode of travel, go early. If to the train station or airport, arrive at least an hour earlier than you would on normal travel days. If by car, it is suggested that you leave at minimum 90 minutes early than a normal commute especially if you are travelling on main thoroughfares. And leave earlier in the day if you can.
  • Remember at the airport or train station that security checks will take longer and have your shoes, belts, keys and electronic devices ready for the screening lines.
  • One thing a lot of travelers forget is food. Pack snacks for any journey to be prepared when nothing is offered on your flight or if you are delayed and the lines are long at the food counters (also can get food from the store, packed with the meal tray packaging system). Also in driving bring waters in case you are caught in traffic.
  • In packing, remember to pack a light carry on and check the bulky bag, even if it could fit in the overhead bin. Nothing is more frustrating than the traveler trying to fit something that doesn’t fit.
  • Experts also say to determine that you are going to be a complaint free traveler and in doing so you prepare yourself to look at what could be worse than how something should be better.
  • Be friendly, smile and enjoy the journey.
  • Remember everyone else is dealing with exactly what you are dealing with and it puts you on common ground.

Simple thoughts? Yes, but proven to be effective ones.