The trick to traveling during a busy period

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When people tell me that they have plans to travel during a busy travel period my first advice is always to tell them not to. But nobody listens to me, so most of the people I know have travel plans for this long weekend. Just this morning a good friend of mine and her "spousal equivalent" hitched a trailer to their car and drove down to the Kwa Zulu Natal south coast. If you're one of the people who have their bags packed, trailers hitched to mummy wagon or tickets booked read on.

I will not hold your disregarding my good advice to not travel during peak periods against you my fellow Jetsetters, I mean none of of us can escape the beckoning of family, holidays and reunions. I will however try to help you for the next time you have to travel during peak time.

1. Plan

Some people are still brave enough to treat this as regular travel — this is only good if your usual travel style is super-orgarnised and super-prepared. For those of us who have had to learn the skill of preparation through trial and error, this is where it counts the most. Make lists, write schedules and try your best to keep to them.

Your plans could include:

  • Travel time:  What time will you need to be at the airport or on the road? Calculate how your trip will take, factoring in delays if you are flying and traffic, toll roads, refreshment/bathroom stops if you're driving. It would make me heartsore to book and pay for an activity and end up missing it because of poor planning.
  • Plan the where, when, who and hows of your trip: Going with the flow is all nice and lovely during spring break when you're in high school, but grown up travel is whole other ball game. If your trip includes kiddies and furry friends, make provisions for them. Tanning on the beach while the boys snorkel  might be your kind of fun but the aforementioned special group is likely to get bored.
  • Let go! Plans are guidelines, don't be a Drill Sergeant  Major  walking around with a schedule and forcing people to stick to it. Go with the flow. If you're having fun, that's all that matters. So what if you don't get to see the sun set over the horizon?
2. Rebel
This will need to be implemented during the planning stages. Leave the day before the rush begins and come back after it. Apply for leave and days off in due time. Not only will you miss most of the traffic and airport rushes, you will also get a quiet time at your chosen lodging. e.i You leave today, before the long weekend begins and return home on Tuesday.
Have I mentioned that everything (plane tickets, accommodation and activities) is significantly cheaper during downtime? Let me guess, you'll still go to the beach over the Christmas holidays won't you?

Here is a cute website about kids who travel... Sweet!

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