Holiday Travel Tips

DATE: December 6, 2013

Thanksgiving was a huge success. Both of our families had a wonderful time once they got to Sanibel Island and Sundial Resort. The key point being: once they got here. In our excitement over not having to go anywhere this year, we overlooked the collective lack of travel experience held by our respective families.

To illustrate how little experience my parents have, I give you this brief back-and-forth that occurred within the first five minutes of their arrival at our house:

“They stole my coffee!” my mother said after I asked her if she wanted a drink.

“I’m sorry?” I responded.

“I even splurged at the airport for The Starbucks! What a rip off!” My mother was clearly quite frustrated with the situation but I wasn’t following.

“I’m a little confused here. Who stole your coffee?” I asked her.

“The troll-y looking man standing in front of the giant x-ray machines! And don’t even get me started on those!”

“Please, don’t,” my father added, from the other room.

“Oh! I understand now,” I said.

“What’s to understand? It’s insanity!” my mother said, getting more and more worked up.

“Mom, when was the last time you got on a plane?”

“For your wedding.”

“That was 13 years ago. A lot has changed since then. Don’t you watch the news?” I asked her.

“Whenever they talked about any silly travel or flying or whatever nonsense I would stop paying attention. It’s not like we ever leave town. You always come up to us,” I gave her that one.

“I’m sorry you had a rough time getting here Mary,” my husband said to my mother as he brought in drinks from the kitchen.

“How about we make you a little cheat sheet to make things easier for you going home and again when you come down for Christmas?” I asked my mother.

“You better!”

And I did.

Below you’ll find the same cheat sheet I gave to my parents before they left Sanibel. I also included a few links to go to for more detailed information.

Travelling Tips for the Uninitiated


    • FAA Rules – These will help you in choosing which suitcase you use and what you can and can’t pack.
    • Christmas Practicality – Knowing that you will be returning with presents (and also arriving with them), either make space in your carry-on for gifts or pack a special bag specifically for gifts. You may want to check your main suitcase and bring this bag as one of your carry-on items in order to ensure none of your new goodies get damaged in transit.
    • Weather – Check out the weather before you load up your suitcase. This time of year, weather tends to be a bit less predictable and you don’t want to show up with clothes meant for weather 20 degrees in the other direction.
    • Beach Vacation Packing Checklist – Here’s a great tool to guide your luggage loading if you are planning on a beach-y holiday.

General Best Practices for Holiday Travel-

Hopefully you can use this in your future travels or share it with someone else who would benefit from the information.


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