The holidays are a great time to visit friends and relatives, but holiday travel can be a hassle. Learn how to take the stress out of holiday travel by making these five considerations prior to embarking on a trip.

Avoid Illness
Traveling can expose you and your family to cold and flu germs, but being proactive about staying healthy while on the go can greatly reduce your risk of becoming ill this holiday season.

Stay hydrated and pack healthy snacks to take on a lengthy car trip or flight. Wash hands frequently, and be sure not to touch your face after touching a railing, seat back or anything else that someone who is ill could have touched.

Seek Off-Peak Travel Dates
Holidays are notorious for expensive travel. Fortunately, travelers can reduce costs by choosing to leave on an off-peak date. Avoid travel on the date of a major holiday, and try to choose a weekday near the holiday instead of a weekend. Hundreds of dollars in savings can be realized through a simple adjustment in travel dates.

The cheapest flights tend to be on Wednesdays, but Wednesdays directly before, after or even on a holiday will still be expensive. Consider leaving the week prior to a holiday in order to enjoy discounts on travel and avoid a crowded airport or roads.

Drive at Night
If you’re going to be driving a long distance this holiday season, consider scheduling your drive overnight instead of during the day. Driving during the day causes problems with rush hour, holiday shoppers jamming the roads and accidents that peak during the holiday season.

Drivers who travel far during the holidays are often unaware of events that may cause heavy congestion on the roads, and traveling overnight tends to eliminate this issue. However, remember not to travel overnight if you are drowsy. Get plenty of rest prior to leaving, and divide driving responsibilities between the adults in the vehicle. If no one is able to safely drive at any point during the trip, find a place to stop for the night and get on the road again once everyone is rested.

Leave Time for Dealing with Crowds
Anywhere you go this holiday season will be packed with crowds, and travel is no different. Airports, travel rest stops and train stations are all going to be crowded. If you’re taking your family on vacation and plan to see the sights during the holidays, remember that museums, zoos and other tourist destinations will require you to be patient because of an increase in visitors.

Don’t Forget Travel Insurance
What would happen if someone in your family suddenly became seriously ill before a flight? What if your job insisted that you work over the holiday? Most people fail to plan for unseen events during the holidays, and a failure to properly plan for trip cancellations can prove to be costly.

Travel insurance not only covers cancellation costs, but it also covers illness, theft and loss resulting from the covered trip. Insurance can help pay for medical bills incurred when health insurance cannot be utilized on a trip and typically reimburses policyholders for lost luggage or damaged personal items.

If you’re traveling this holiday season, remember to plan ahead and know what to expect on the road or in the air. Consider purchasing a travel insurance plan for added peace of mind.

 

This article was contributed by Kyle Telenko, a writer for the homeowners insurance site, homeownersinsurance-quotes.org. Kyle primarily writes about home safety tips but also covers vehicle maintenance and travel precautions as well.