Timely Hacks for the Holiday Traveler

Don't stress! Use these simple tips to make your next holiday or business trip a breeze and hassle-free. Don't forget to ask about the Culdesac holiday specials when you book your next airport or hotel transfer! 

Traveling around the holidays can be super stressful, here’s a few tips and tricks to make things a little easier.

Before you go:

1. Charge your devices

Tablets, computers, smartphones, you name it, anything that can be charged should be. Nothing can ruin a holiday faster than a three-hour snowstorm delay with no available outlets. Even better? A portable charger. There are great versions available for $30 that are portable, have connectors for all types of devices and hold hours of battery life.

2. Fly on the holiday

Sure, we all want to be on vacation for as long as possible but flying on the holiday itself is the way to go. Not only is it less expensive, there are less crowds and people tend to be extra nice. Holiday cheer: 1, Grumpy Scrooge: 0.

3. Clear your queue/cookies

The secret is out, according to Johnny Jet, airlines can now track how often you visit their website and adjust their prices accordingly. By clearing the cookies, you look like a brand-new customer and see the best available prices.

4. Packing

Loved by some, feared by many ... packing often feels like a necessary evil when traveling. How can you possibly fit your entire closet in a tiny rolling shoebox? Sadly, you can’t but there are a few hacks that optimize the space and function of your bag.

— First, start by rolling your clothes. From jeans to shirts and even your socks, rolling your clothes shrinks them to their absolute smallest. Also, leave no space unstuffed. Sneakers, for example, can be bulky and take up a lot of room, try putting your socks or other unmentionables inside. Speaking of sneakers, next time you’re at a hotel, grab a shower cap and put your shoes inside — they make great covers for bottoms and keep everything else in your suitcase clean.

If you don’t have a jewelry case, try putting your earrings through button holes, your necklaces in straws and your rings in pill containers — you’re less likely to lose your smaller pieces and the straw will help keep your necklaces from getting tangled.

5. Make snacks ahead of time

Easy in theory but not so easy in practice. Many people fall into the airport trap of eating fast food or buying snack bags large enough to feed a small family, not to mention the hefty price tag that comes along with it. By packing snacks at home ahead of time, it’s easier to bring exactly what you want, as well as the right proportions and save money! It’s a win-win-win situation.

6. Pack light

Now that you’ve mastered packing from tip 5, you can move to the next level: packing light! It really is an art form. Deciding what you really need is the hardest part. One good rule, make a list of the days you’ll be gone and what you’ll be doing those days. By visualizing what the trip ahead entails, you’ll have a better idea of what you need. Ski vacation in Colorado? You probably don’t need that cocktail dress with the killer heels. If you’re really stuck, check out onebag.com, a site that tells you what to pack (and more importantly, what to leave at home) for every type of vacation.

Plus by packing less, you’re more likely to be able to fit everything in a carry-on, which means no outrageous checked bag fee and more money for your vacation!

7. Book travel using a credit card with points

If you’re going to use a credit card for your airfare, hotel or other travel expenses, try getting a card that gives you points for what you spend. If you’re going to spend, you might as well be earning free stuff while you’re at it.

En route:

8. Bring an eye mask and ear plugs

Seriously, bring an eye mask and ear plugs with you for the plane. Flights are bright and extremely loud and there’s always an off-chance your seatmate will be a fussy baby. Ear plugs will be your saving grace and the eye mask will let you escape from the rest. Sure, they might look a little silly but no one will be laughing when you arrive well rested.

9. Socks on a plane

Don’t forget to bring your mother f*** socks on the mother f*** plane! Somehow, that line worked better for Samuel but the advice is real. Temperatures plummet when you’re 30,000 feet above the ground and as hard as they might try, regulating the perfect balance of hot and cold inside the cabin is not easy. Socks, especially thick ones, will help keep you warm and cozy.

10. Bring a scarf or small, lightweight blanket

Along with socks, it’s a good idea to stick a scarf or small and lightweight blanket in your carry on. It’s rare for airlines to have blankets available for everyone nowadays but with a scarf you’ll have an instant blanket or wrap to keep warm. Plus, you can always ball it up and use it as a pillow. Talk about a 2-for-1.

11. Bring your own alcohol onboard

For the 21+ crowd who enjoys an adult beverage or two while flying remember, as long you abide by TSA rules, you can bring your own mini bottles of alcohol on the plane. Gone will be the days of expensive drinks from tiny plastic cups!

Post trip:

12. Take an extra day

If it’s possible, come back a day early or tack an extra day onto the end of a trip. Having a day at home to do laundry, clean and overall just get back into the swing of things is sometimes (almost) better than the vacation itself.
— http://www.hlntv.com/article/2014/11/20/holiday-travel-hacks
Posted on December 2, 2014 .