Are you traveling over the river and through the woods to Grandmother's house this year? Heading south for sunshine and warmth? Planning a trek to the Colorado mountains?
Wherever you're headed this holiday season, if you're planning to fly, here are a few things you need to know to ensure your travels are merry:
1. Kids 12 and under no longer have to take off their shoes to walk through security at the airports. This is a blessing for families--and for everyone waiting in the security line behind them.
2. If you're flying and planning to travel with your gifts, wait until you get to your destination to wrap them. It can be a pain wrapping all of the gifts after you arrive, but it can save lots of hassle at the airport. If the airport security screeners can't tell what's inside the wrapped gift, they have every right to unwrap it. So you could end up wrapping the gift twice. If you want to send it through with your checked bag, just remember to cushion it well so whatever you're giving doesn't end up crushed on arrival.
3. Pack a power strip in your carry-on. Few airports have adapted to our electronic world, so there rarely are enough plugs at the gate areas. If you're traveling with gadget-addicted kids, they need power. If you have a power strip, it won't matter that someone is hogging both of those coveted outlets. Simply ask the plug hog if you can plug in your power strip, then (this step is critical) plug in his cords first, then plug in your kids. Everyone will stay powered up and happy.
And, as an added holiday gift, a bit of advice: Travel is expected to recover this year, which means, sadly, prices will be rising. So if you know where you want to take your family vacation this year, consider booking it now at 2011 prices.
Cindy Richards is the mom of two who gets her muse from traveling the world, usually with kids in tow. She also writes for TravelingMom.com, where she also serves as editor.
See more of Cindy's stories here.