As Thanksgiving draws near some may recall the classic Lydia Maria Child’s song … “Over the river and through the wood to we go the horse knows the way to carry the sleigh…” While those lyrics bring to mind a gentle and enjoyable holiday trip to a Thanksgiving bounty unfortunately today’s holiday travel can be anything but enjoyable OR gentle. Rather, images that come to mind might be overcrowded airports, long security lines and hassled travelers. The “soft and gentle snow” which Ms. Child’s sings about, might instead reflect snow delayed flights in the mind of today’s traveler. All things that can be very hard to be thankful for. To help carry you back to the friendlier way of travel Ms Child’s refers to we offer these important tips to those who may be travelling this holiday season: 5 FOR HOLIDAY TRAVELERS 1. Get to the airport earlier than usual. Holidays are always a crowded time to travel and predictions are that slightly more Americans will hit the road this season. This puts added pressure on the system making it all the more important for you to arrive early. Don’t forget to check in ahead of time, print your boarding pass and let your air carrier know you of any special needs you may have. For a relaxed check in procedure during normal travel periods we recommend arriving at least 2 hours early. This gives you time to check your bags, get through security and arrive at the gate. 2. Weigh your bags – The general cut off weight for airlines checked baggage is 50 lbs. Anything over that weight means you will be paying excessive additional fees or pulling your undies out in front of everyone at the airport. Besides the embarrassment of seeing your unmentionables they are not going to be happy that you held them up. To save yourself this grief weigh your bags before you leave home 3. Apply ahead of time for TSA Pre-Check Expedited Screening. This will put you ahead of everyone in the line. No waiting, and you get to keep your shoes, belt, and coat on. 4. Traveling with Food. Let’s face it – Thanksgiving is a holiday for and about food! Everyone wants to bring back a favorite food from Thanksgiving dinner. Just think of all of the wonderful turkey sandwiches you could have. While pies, and left-over turkey is allowed, you are certain to run into trouble if you attempt to bring a liquid onboard. Sauces, dips, gift baskets with liquids, gravy, jams, jellies, syrups, oils, vinegars, soups, and wine, liquor, and beer will not be allowed on the plane. To prevent heartbreak, ship these items home, place all the liquids into your checked bag, or don’t bring them at all. 5. Traveling with Gifts. While wrapped gifts are not prohibited, you may have to unwrap the gift if it sets off an alarm. Better to ship your gifts ahead of time, or at the very least, wrap them once you get to your destination. Or, buy them online and ship them to your holiday destination- a friend has a trick where her parents know that all packages marked with a special name don’t get opened until it’s time. Above all else, be patient and travel with the right frame of mind. Know that it is going to be crowded, the lines will be long, and nothing will happen as fast as you’d like it to. If you know that before you leave disappointment will not be as upsetting to you. Following these few tips can help to make your travels more enjoyable and provide you with a more enjoyable trip to “Grandfather’s house” or wherever else you seasonal travels may take you! On behalf of Travel N we wish you safe, joyous and blessed Thanksgiving wherever you might be spending it! Happy Thanksgiving!