Episode 144
Episode 144: Simplify Your Holiday Travel
Show Notes

Simplify Your Holiday Travel

Want to opt out of holiday travel stress? Us too. When it comes to having a smoother holiday travel experience, two things will help you out: a little planning and a lot of Starbucks. This week, Liz helps us think about those pesky details we often overlook whether we’re planning to hop in the car.

Tips for: No Matter How You’re Getting There...

  • If Your Accommodations and Transportation Aren’t Booked, Book Them Now.
  • Consider Shipping Gifts in Advance. Or, you know, giving gift cards. 

Tips for: If you’re FLYING…

  1. Prep your travel essentials. Keep important documents (passport, tickets, ID, etc.) in a dedicated travel wallet or pouch. Have a clear itinerary, and make digital copies of important documents in case of loss.
  2. Book your airport parking in advance. Not only does that guarantee you a spot, but sometimes it is cheaper, too. Check your airport’s website or private parking operators nearby.
  3. Be strategic about checking bags. Listen, if you’re going to have your hands full, whether with kids or luggage or both, just check your bag—even if you prefer a carry-on. You’re going to be so glad you have your hands free as you’re navigating the terminal.
  4. Plan for security checks. If you’re carrying on any gifts, DO NOT WRAP THEM because TSA may have to open them up. You can bring any solid food with you onto the plane, but make sure you check anything that can be pumped, poured, sprayed, or smeared and is more than 3.4 ounces. If you have any questions about this, check the TSA website or socials.
  5. Arrive early. This is the time you really don’t want to flirt with disaster and miss your flight. Because it’s going to be really hard to get booked on another one.
  6. Stay informed. If there was ever a time to enable push notifications, it’s on a travel day. Check your apps, download Flight Aware for really accurate plane info, and make sure you check for any possible delays or cancellations before you leave for the airport. 

Tips for: If you’re DRIVING…

  1. Plan your route in advance. If you have a long journey ahead, think in advance about a good place to stop for rest, especially if you need to book a hotel overnight.
  2. Service your vehicle. Get an oil change, and put air in your tires. Check the brakes and lights, and make sure your spare tire is in good shape. And if all else fails, make sure you have AAA.
  3. If you don’t have one, put an emergency kit in your car. Make sure to include essentials like a first-aid kit, a flashlight, jumper cables, some blankets, and extra water and snacks. It’s also a good idea to get a portable air compressor, in case you need to inflate your tires.
  4. Prep your entertainment. Make sure you’ve got all the good playlists and podcasts cued up. And if you’ve got kids in the back, you know what to do: it’s time for “no shame devices time.”
  5. Pack snacks. Obviously, snacks are the best part of any road trip, so make sure to stock up! Make some sandwiches in advance, and store them in a cooler along with cut-up fruits and veggies. If that feels like too much, no problem! Stock up on nonperishables like jerky and nuts and anything else you guys love to munch on.
  6. Take regular breaks. Obviously, your bladder may force you to take a break, but of course, if you’ve got a long journey you need to get out and stretch your legs every once in a while! If you’re traveling with pets, make sure they get out as they need, and give them plenty of water.
  7. Download travel apps. If you want to find the cheapest gas in your area, GasBuddy is truly your friend. If you want to find cool things to do or eat on the way, download the RoadTrippers app. And of course if all else fails, just use your trusty Google Maps or Waze.
  8. Last, I’ve got two more tips. Check the weather forecast and road conditions before you depart and be prepared for unexpected weather changes. And don’t forget to tell someone about your itinerary and expected arrival times for safety.

A Blessing for Your Week

Blessed are you, the airport traveler who’s lugging small children—and every possession they have in the world—onto a plane.

(I know you’d leave 99% of the luggage at home if you could. But alas, this offspring of yours needs SO MUCH.)

May everyone around you be calm and kind. 

May your kid do their best to act like they’re auditioning for A Quiet Place.

And may you enjoy that in-flight beverage of your choice.

Because sis, you absolutely earned it.

Blessed are you, holiday driver.

May all of your pitstops be quick and efficient.

May all the devices stay charged and the mouths stay closed.

May the fuel prices make you say, “I haven’t seen gas that cheap since Bush was in office!”

And may you see at least one cool thing on the road, 

Like maybe the Weinermobile.

Because nobody is ever sad when they see the Oscar Meyer Weinermobile.

Simplicity Tip of the Week

If you’re checking any luggage, I HIGHLY recommend you get a pack of Apple AirTags and put them into each bag that’s going to be checked. It’ll be impossible for the airline to lose your bag, because you’ll be able to see, at all times, where your bag is located. And if it doesn’t show up, you can pull up your phone and show the customer service rep. 

And hey, you don’t have to check a bag to get AirTags, either! Put one in your purse, your diaper bag. or any other bag you need to keep track of. Best $25 you’ll ever spend.

Get Emily’s New Book!

  • Near in the Night: 100 Evening Meditations on God’s Peace and Rest

  • Subscribe to The Simplified Podcast!

    Apple Podcasts | Spotify | iHeartRadio | YouTube

    Listen to the Podcast Ad Free + Get Early Access to New Episodes!

    Apple Premium

    Subscribe  to Emily’s Substack!


    Let’s Be Friends!

    Simplified: Instagram | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | YouTube

    Emily Ley: Instagram | Facebook 

    Filed under