Fall is upon us! You may be seeing leaves change color or simply experiencing an ever so slight drop in temperature (cough, cough – California and Florida). As crazy as it might sound, the end of this month means that Thanksgiving is only two months away, and Christmas is only three months away! Even though that may seem like a long time, it really isn’t. For those of you traveling for the upcoming holidays, we’ve created a helpful checklist for you and your family!
When to Book your Flights
There are quite a few reports and studies written about the best time to book a flight. According to CheapAir.com’s study, you should book your flight about 54 days (7 ½ weeks) before your departure date. Their study showed that—statistically—flight cost will significantly increase after the 54 day mark. Plus, you’ll most likely be pushing your luck by waiting until the last minute.
What does this mean for you? For Thanksgiving, you should be booking your plane tickets now! For Christmas, you should be booking your place tickets in October (better to book earlier because of the Christmas rush).
Book your Airport Parking and Car Rental Early
Similar to the airlines, airport parking and car rental companies will raise their rates over the Christmas holidays because of the demand. It is best practice to book your airport parking and car rental ahead of time to avoid last minute price increases. Furthermore, because of limited supply, you’ll want to book in advance so that you’re not frantically searching last minute for an airport parking space or scouring the internet looking for the last available car rental.
Our advice? Save yourself the adrenaline rush (and possible ulcers) and book your car rental and airport parking right after you book you flight.
Order Gifts Online Now and Have Them Shipped
Whether you’re proactive or a procrastinator, the fact is that you have to buy gifts sometime before Christmas. Of course, everyone knows about Cyber Monday and Black Friday, but why not get your shopping done now? In October, you won’t need to worry about back orders, limited stock, or (probably our biggest concern) getting squished and trampled on by some crazy shopper on a mission. Plus, if you ship your presents now you won’t have to worry about the higher probability of your shipment getting lost around the holidays. Shop with ease online, and ship the presents to your holiday destination.
Schedule Workload Around the Holidays Starting Now!
Our advice – be proactive! Even if you’re not in a managerial role, plan ahead for what assignments need to be completed before the holidays. This way, you can actually enjoy the festivities and not be checking your email every couple of hours. Talk with your manager, team members, and customers about what projects they need/would like completed for the holidays. Besides helping you with your stress, you’ll look really good by looking so far out in advance!
Talk With Your Kid’s Teachers About Assignments
Most kids aren’t perfect! Kids are known for waiting until the very last minute. Whether it be book reports, exams, projects, or regular homework assignments, kids normally don’t plan in advance. In order to mitigate stress and increase your enjoyment, we advise that you approach your kid’s teachers as soon as possible. Send an email, a note with your child, or have an in-person meeting with the teacher so that you are both on the same page. Who wants to get stuck in the local library all Thanksgiving break to help their child with the book report they “forgot about?” Speak with your child’s teacher as soon as you can!
Make Sure Your Passports & IDs Are Current
Though this may sound like a no-brainer, out-of-date travel documents can happen to anyone. Check the expiration on your driver’s license or passport to double-check that you will be ok to get through TSA at the airport. If you’re traveling with your family be sure to check your children’s identification documents as well.
Even though we might not want to think about credit card statements for November and December, it is smart that we start now! Preparation may not be fun, but you’ll be very glad that you did it. Have we missed any other items that could be done now for the upcoming holiday travel?
Let us know in the comments!