Preparing for Airline Holiday Travel

Preparing for Airline Holiday Travel

The holidays have always been a popular time for traveling near and far. Some people travel to see their family and others travel to get away. No matter what category you fit into, here are some useful preparation tips from Travel With Joy.


If you are not sure about you can or should not pack, visit the Transportation Security Administration’s website for up-to-date screening procedures.

  • Roll your clothing and fit more items into your luggage.
  • Reduce the need for additional luggage by packing outfits that you can mix and match.
  • Keep medications, keys, and jewelry in your carryon luggage.
  • Place liquid-type toiletry items in zipped plastic bags in case of spillage.
  • Don’t pack valuables in your check-in luggage.
  • Don’t lock your luggage unless you plan to use locks approved by TSA
  • Pack raingear, poncho etc. in your carry-on luggage.

Place nametags (with your name and phone number) on all luggage including carryon items. This way if you should leave something behind or your luggage doesn’t arrive with your flight, it will be easier to reunite you with your belongings. Place the same information inside your luggage in case the luggage tag is lost or removed.


Ship gifts before your departure and save yourself time and frustration. Airport security will open and search these items even if they are gift-wrapped, destroying the best of your intentions. Save yourself time and frustration by shipping the gifts before your departure.

Before You Leave Home

  • Print your checklist and check it twice.
  • Consider cleaning up before you leave and come back to washed dishes, fresh linen on the bed, and clean laundry to help “extend” your vacation.
  • Set up automatic timers so your home doesn’t look deserted.
  • Make arrangements for paper and mail deliveries.
  • You can suspend mail delivery at the U.S. Post office website.
  • Check your flight for delays or cancellations.
  • Arrange for transportation to and from the airport. If you are driving your car, make sure that adequate parking is available at the airport. If you are leaving from Baltimore, Minneapolis, Richmond or Omaha click here for information on discounted airport parking. Allow extra time in case of shift changes by airport personnel.
  • Check the weather report for your destination.

Getting to the Airport

Plan to arrive at the airport at least two hours before departure for domestic travel and three hours for international travel. You never know when you may encounter a traffic jam or long check-in lines. Allow even more time for busy airports and peak holiday dates.

At the Airport

  • Again, check your flight for delays or cancellations.
  • Maintain a watchful eye on your luggage and belongings.
  • Keep your ID and itinerary handy.

Enjoy your trip! We’d love to hear from you when you return.