Gentleman's Guide: Holiday Travels
No one is immune to the woes of holiday travel. Let's be honest, things will probably go wrong. Horrific traffic, flight delays, food stains, batteries dying -- the list goes on and on. While we can't guarantee you'll avoid these issues, we can give you some advice on how to get from point A to point B calm, cool, and collected.
1. Plan Ahead
Holiday travel is going to be chaotic. Accept this, but don't accept defeat before you step out your door. Pack your bag a few days before. WARNING: you'll need to do laundry before you pack said bag (unless you're bringing dirty clothes home to mom, then by all means skip the laundromat). Give yourself more than enough time to get to the airport. Put in a few extra hours at work before you leave so you don't end up having a departure time later than desired. Create a few good playlists. Chances are you will be in a train, plane, or car for longer than planned.
Key Takeaway: Failing to plan is planning to fail. (Was that corny? Yes? Just do it).
2. Go With the Flow
We know it can be easy to get worked up about traffic, but honestly, why bother? You'll get there when you get there. If you miss your flight, there will be another one. If you get there late, your family and friends will still love you. If you forget someone's present, there's always FedEx. Although getting where you're going can be frustrating around the holidays remember that (in most cases) you WILL get there. Rather than harping on the negatives, try and focus on the positive: catch up with a phone call, chat with your travel buddy, read a few chapters of a book, take a nap, listen to music, do anything that makes the ride fun.
Key Takeaway: It's about the journey, not the destination.
3. Pack Smart
This one is really important. Holiday weather can be unpredictable. In the freezing rain, you'll need an umbrella. Playing in the snow, you'll want warm layers. For a long train ride, you'll want your best lounge gear. Above all else make sure you pack your grooming essentials. There's nothing I hate more than when my brother forgets a toothbrush, cologne, or WORSE - deoderant. No outfit is successful if you don't have a fresh scent to match. When you look and smell good you'll be confident no matter what kind of embarrassing questions crazy Aunt Meg has up her sleeve.
Key Takeaway: Pack smart so you can stay comfortable and confident no matter what comes your way.
4. Leave Work Behind
We know a lot of work schedules, projects, and deadlines can pile up this time of year. As hard as it is, you need to leave it behind. This time is about you and your loved ones. Don't be THAT guy on his phone the entire weekend. Sitting in the airport seems like the perfect time to get a little bit of work done, but think about talking to a few people instead, would ya? Even if you don't have travel buddies, it's a perfect opportunity to unwind and relax before you see your (potentially crazy) relatives.
Key Takeaway: You do enough. Take a break.
5. Remember WHO Matters
Around the holidays, especially when you have down time, it can be easy to get caught up in all of the stuff you're buying or the people you want to make happy. We all love getting and giving presents, but try and remember this time is about connecting with the people you lovet. Maybe you got a nice raise and can now afford presents to match, or maybe money is a little tight and you couldn't get those stellar gifts you wanted. It's the thought that counts and your presence is actually the only thing your loved ones REALLY want.
Key Takeaway: You're not rich until you have something that money can't buy.
If you're looking for more advice concerning holiday shopping, travel, and more click here!