A Librarian's Guide to Holiday Travel

Holiday travel

The holidays can be a very stressful time, particularly if you are traveling for Thanksgiving or Christmas.  The weather is unpredictable, so traffic jams, flight delays, and cancellations are always possible.  Since I almost never travel during the holidays, I thought I would give you, the reading public, some advice on holiday travel.

Tip 1:  Leave early – If you are traveling by car from Birmingham to Cleveland, Ohio and you know that the family meal is at 3:00 pm, don’t wait until 10:00 am to leave Birmingham.  You cannot make it to Cleveland that fast, and if you can, don’t drive anywhere near me.   You will spend Thanksgiving in the pokey rather than at grandma’s house.  The same holds true for airline travel.  It takes time for the TSA to hold you upside down and shake everything out of your pockets, so arrive early enough to allow for that. 

Tip 2:  Put some gas in the car – If you only have a quarter tank of gas in the car and no money, please stay at home.  You may make it to the corner store and back, but that’s about it.  Your V8 does not get 100 miles per gallon. 

Tip 3:  Take some cash – You don’t have to take rubber-band stacks of cash like a hip-hop artist, but it’s a good idea to have some cash in case you need it.  That gas station with the one pump without a nozzle attached probably doesn’t accept American Express.  If the interstate sign says “gas” without a brand name, you may end up at the one-pump station.  

Tip 4:  Pack for the time you will be away – Don't give your relatives a heart attack by showing up with a U-Haul truck full of luggage.  They are happy to see you, but they do want you to leave.  

Tip 5:  Try to relax and enjoy it – If you have not laughed at Tips 1-4, you are already stressed out.  Holidays are supposed to be fun, not stressful, so enjoy yourself.  Keep in mind, I said SUPPOSED to be.  Happy Holidays!