Tips to Make Holiday Traveling Easy


Brooklen Pe'a

With these tips, traveling home during the holidays can be stress-free and anxiety-proof.

When I was 17 years old, I made the decision to move to California from Utah with my twin sister to play club volleyball. However, I was still attending high school in Utah, and we’d be moving without my family. 

So I became a commuter by flight as I was only able to do this because my mom worked for an airline. A typical day for me was attending school in the morning until about noon and then taking about a two-hour flight to San Diego for practice at night. Afterward, because I would miss the direct flight back to Utah, I’d fly to Atlana on a six-hour redeye and do it all over the next day. I followed this routine for about three months, meaning I was flying five to six times a week.

Through all of this and even more traveling, I have seen one too many people suffer from the easily avoidable mistakes that come from stepping foot into the airport to taking their seats on an airplane. So from me to you, here are my tips that are made to make your airport and in-flight journey back home for the holidays easy and anxiety-proof.

Wear Shoes You Can Take On and Off Easily 

Unless you have TSA Pre-Check, you are most of the time required to remove your shoes upon going through security. And there is nothing worse than standing behind someone who wore high-top Converse or leather go-go boots. They take forever to take off and forever to put back on which can hold up the security line. Don’t be that person. Save yourself the sweat and anxiety. 

So wear shoes that you can slip on and off fast. The cute Ugg Tasman slippers that are trending right now, wear them. Cute and comfy, a good choice if you like to look put-together at the airport. And if you don’t care about the look all too much, wear the worn-down tennis shoes you sport every day. 

Wear a Jacket or Bring a Blanket

One of the annoying parts of traveling is how hot or cold it can get in such little spurts of time. It can be hot while walking to the gate that’s crowded with hordes of people. It can be cold when you’re on the plane and trying to sleep. You could be traveling in the middle of the winter months and even though you’re about to board a flight to Cancun, going to the airport without some sort of jacket seems wrong. 

The best way to combat this is to wear a jacket that you can take on and off easily or pack a light blanket in your carry-on. That way you can take it off if you’re feeling flustered and start to get hot as I do. Or you can put your blanket on when you’re trying to get some shut-eye on the flight. 

Use an Easy to Transfer Carry-On

Many airlines offer the luxury of allowing their passengers at least one carry-on. Take advantage of this, especially if the trip is only a couple of days and not too far from home. In layman’s terms, you want a bag you can take items out of easily and stow away quickly, whether it be under the seat or in the cabin somewhere. 

Inside the bag, pack a good pair of headphones compatible with your phone or the screens on the plane. Most times the screens on the plane are not Bluetooth-friendly, so if you are wanting to make use of those, bring some with a cord. A charger for your phone should also be included, portable or not. 

Arrive With Plenty of Spare Time

Lines at the airport for anything can be long and that only gets worse during the holidays. 

Most times people arrive at the airport thinking the line to check their bag will be short or the line to go through security will be a breeze. Not to say that we need to be getting to the airport five hours before our flight like our grandparents would. But plan for lines and plan to wait in them. If you’re planning on checking a bag, that’s one line. Security is another, which in some cases can tend to be one of the longest. We’d like to avoid running through the airport like the “Home Alone” family. 

So arrive with the mindset that everyone will be traveling on the same day and at the same time as you. There is no harm in being early.