9 Tips for Easing Your Holiday Travel Woes

9 Tips for Easing Your Holiday Travel Woes

By Stephanie Andre

RISMEDIA, November 16, 2010—With just a little more than a week before Thanksgiving, the stress of holiday travel is quickly approaching.

However, with some advanced preparation and a bit more time packing, there’s no reason why your holiday travel can’t be exactly what you’d dream it could be: easy.

Here, AirTran Airways provides some travel tips and guidelines to help you have a happy holiday:

Layer your ingredients – Much like your favorite Thanksgiving dessert, layers work best. Pack a layer of clothes, then a layer of electronics, another layer of clothes and then any heavier items. This allows transportation security officers to see what’s in your bag quickly, thus moving lines along faster.

Set your timer – With increased airport traffic during the holidays, it’s best to arrive at the airport at least two hours prior to takeoff. Airport parking lots will be more crowded, ticket lines will invariably be longer and other passengers, who aren’t as prepared as you, could hold up security check points. Arriving to the airport early helps to alleviate concerns about missed flights due to elongated check-in procedures.

“Dressing” for success – Avoid wearing clothes and accessories that have metal as they will certainly slow down the security process. All footwear must go through the security screening process as well.

A liquid diet – Airport security guidelines do allow for travelers to bring liquids, gels and aerosols in their carry-on luggage. However, the items must be stored in containers no larger than three ounces and must be placed in a single, quart-sized zip-top, clear plastic bag.

Protect your bounty – Place your wallet, keys, money clips and cell phone inside of your carry-on luggage prior to arriving to the security checkpoint. This is extra protection from thieves and will expedite the item retrieval process once you’ve passed the checkpoint.

Check the status of your “pilgrim” age – It is a good idea to confirm your flight status before heading to the airport. Most airlines will allow you to print your boarding pass and a receipt from your computer.

Tag your luggage – A baggage tag with your name, home address and telephone number must be placed on the outside of your bag. For easy identification upon arrival, passengers may also want to use a ribbon or other easily identifiable item to mark their bag.

Harvest your IDs – The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) security procedures require that all travelers 18 years of age and older show a government-issued photo ID, such as a valid driver’s license, a passport or military ID. If you do not have one of the above, you may show two forms of non-photo ID, at least one of which must be issued by a local, state or federal government agency such as the following: birth certificate, Medicare card, voter registration card or Social Security card. Ensure that the name on your itinerary matches the name on your identification.

Invest in a security friendly laptop bag – If you want to avoid having to remove your laptop at the security checkpoint, buy a laptop bag that is free of outside pockets, metal snaps, zippers or thick padding that can obstruct a clear X-Ray view of the laptop. Also, keep cords and batteries separate from the laptop to avoid having to remove the laptop from your bag.

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