Holiday Travel Tips

Today is one of the busiest travel days of the year, and there are also delays at many of the country's airports. Large crowds are still expected at airports through the weekend as passengers travel from near and far to be with family and friends during the holiday season.


How can I prepare for travel by plane?
  • Travel with a photo identification at all times.
  • Reconfirm your flight directly with the airline 24 to 48 hours prior to departure.
  • Do not wrap gifts that you plan to carry on because they will be opened by gate security.
  • Think about what you are wearing before going to the airport. Metal clothing or metal jewelry are likely to require additional screening.
  • Allow extra time. Heightened airport security measures increase the time needed to check in. Build in even more time at the airport if traveling with young children, infants, or persons with disabilities.


  • How can I prepare for travel by car?
  • Leave early or stay late during major holidays like Christmas. The heaviest traffic of the holiday typically is after 2 p.m. Be home by 6 p.m. on the last day of the holiday weekend, or the roads will be packed.
  • Plan ahead. Know your route and have an alternate plan in case of heavy traffic. Carry a vehicle safety kit.
  • Take breaks. Take a 15-to 20-minute break every few hours. Stop at a safe rest area and stretch your legs. Drink plenty of fluids.
  • Don't eat and run. Take a walk after dinner to get the blood flowing.


  • What are some tips for train or bus travel?
  • Make reservations in advance.
  • Bring snacks, reading material, radio headsets and a small pillow.
  • Photo identification is required to pick up or purchase tickets.
  • Passengers with disabilities who need travel assistance should call travel assist lines at least 48 hours prior to departure.


  • What are some home tips?
  • Contact your local police or sheriff's office to inquire about a house watch. Many agencies provide a perimeter check of your home such as doors, windows and fences-while you are away.
  • Remember to put a temporary hold on your mail and newspaper delivery.
  • Install timers to turn internal and external lights on and off at certain times of the evening to help ward off burglars.


  • To learn more about holiday travel:
    • Click here for more trip tips from the FAA.

    • What can you bring on a plane? The FAA has a list of prohibited items.

    • Travelers concerned about possible civil unrest, terrorism or crime should consult the U.S. State Department's Website.

    • Arm yourself with the latest and best information on America's airports provided by the FAA's Air Traffic Control System Command Center. Click here.

    • Melissa McNamara

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