Whether it's to see family, get away from it all or a little bit of both; the holiday season is a popular time of year to take a vacation. As most employers wind down for a few weeks, it's a great opportunity to take advantage of some time off. Regardless of what you celebrate, this season represents a chance to regroup and come back ready to take on the new year, and what better way to refocus your energy than taking a trip? Another thing that's synonymous with this time of year, and sometimes with travel, is stress. This will be especially true when travelling with kids, so how can you avoid it and make the most of your holiday getaway? Plan Ahead This goes without saying but, make sure your trip is planned far enough in advance for you to do as much research as you need to. If your trip involves any connecting, it might be a good idea to check out a map of the airport the connection will be taking place, so you don't waste time trying to find your way and potentially miss your flight. Another good solution to that is ensuring you have a good enough cushion between the two flights to begin in, just in case. These are all small details that you can take into consideration early on in the booking process so you can go with the most convenient option. Also, in the even that there are delays or cancellations, be sure you have snacks and entertainment handy to get through it. Avoid Peak Travel Days Travelling on Christmas Eve will be one of the most frustrating, not to mention expensive, things you'll ever do. Same goes for the 31st of December. Try to travel on days that are a bit off-peak to save yourself the headache of getting around as everyone is trying to get to their destination at the last minute. Keep in mind what day of the week the actual holiday falls on, as throughout the rest of the year, Monday - Thursday morning tend to be the off-peak days, but that can easily change is the holidays fall within that time. Consider heading to your destination on the 22nd or 23rd to avoid the rush. If you're not returning home until after New Years, try the 2nd or 3rd - unless they fall on a weekend then you may be better off waiting a little while longer as most people will be also heading home to be back at work for Monday. Give Yourself Lots of Time Common travel wisdom says to give yourself 2 hours before your flight time to get to the airport to check baggage, get through customs and other checkpoints. On the holidays, it will be even more packed than usual and if you plan on travelling with a large group of friends and family, it may be wise to add another hour or even two to that equation. Travelling with kids means extra washroom breaks and lots of stopping, so keep this all in mind and give yourself even more of a cushion than you usually would. This could very well be the difference between making or missing your flight. Also, the winter months mean having to take the risk of extreme weather into account, so checking travel forecasts throughout the week leading up to as well as the day of your flight will also help you plan how much extra time you actually need. Pack Smart Imagine getting to the airport, checking your baggage only to later realize something in it should really be in your carry-on ; especially if you have a long flight ahead of you. Don't leave your packing until the night before and always use high quality luggage like our Rise Gear bags. It might be helpful to make lists of items that should go into checked baggage vs. items for your carry-on and going from there to make sure you don't forget anything. While we can't promise every single trip will go off without a hitch, these are a few of our tips to help get it as close as possible. Keep those stress levels low and Happy Travels!