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Top 10 tips for travelling over Christmas

top ten tips for travelling over Christmas Clarity Business Travel

Flying Home for Christmas

It’s that time of year when most business travellers will be booking those all important trips home. At the same time many others are packing their bags ready to travel to holiday destinations near and far. Aside from summer, December is one of the busiest periods for air travel, but fear not - we’ve put together our top ten tips for business travellers to get you home for the festive season

1. Save time, check in online

Checking in online is fast becoming the norm, but remembering to do so over the Christmas period is especially important. More than likely your average traveller won’t be so efficient, so take advantage of booking in as soon as you can to bypass the queues and secure your seat. Most airlines have baggage drops for checked bags, so don’t worry about those extra-large pieces of luggage.

2. Choose the path less travelled

If you haven’t booked your travel yet, consider transiting through a lesser known hub. The most efficient route, isn’t always the best during the holiday period. Some airports can become chaotic with people wanting to jet off to warmer (or colder) climates once the school holidays have kicked in. If you have the opportunity, plan a route less travelled and avoid the chaos. This might also have the added advantage of being more cost effective, earning you extra brownie points with your manager!

3. Pack light. Pack right.

It is Christmas so you may be carrying a tad more weight than usual (in your bags we mean.) Where possible, be sure to leave unnecessary items at home to save you the stress of manoeuvring large suitcases or paying excess baggage fees. If you are bringing back presents, leave the wrapping for when you have reached your destination. Heightened Security checks are in place at many airports and you may be asked to unwrap them for scanning. It’s also worth being mindful of any customs or import regulations for countries you are travelling to. Many airlines don’t allow Christmas crackers either.

Clarity Christmas Man with Suitcase box

4. Carry cash

When airports are at their busiest, having cash is always handy. If a credit card system goes down at a check in desk, restaurant or duty-free outlet, you’ll be prepared and won’t have to waste time looking for the nearest cash machine.

5. Travel at a time that suits your needs

There are a number of flight statistics that show planes travelling earlier in the day have a better on-time performance. It also means that if your flight is cancelled, you still have the rest of the day to potentially rebook. However, if your priority is getting home for Christmas you might want to choose an overnight less sociable flight. If that’s the case, make sure you plan your sleep accordingly, to ensure you arrive refreshed and ready to be merry!

6. Flight status: check, check and check again.

Regardless of where you’re flying to, check your flight status as often as you can. Although weather conditions aren’t something you can control, knowing of any delays or cancellations as soon as possible can ensure you make the right alternative arrangements. Even if the destinations you’re travelling to don’t seem to be affected, if the aircraft was originally coming from somewhere that has been hit with weather issues it can have a knock-on effect on travel.

Clarity Christmas Man with Suitcase box

7. Keep your wits about you

As a business traveller, this is your domain. Your experience as a regular traveller can set you apart from the rest; use that acumen to your advantage. There are many travellers who may not be used to the rules and regulations when it comes to security checks or dropping off bags. Avoid the queues with wrapped gifts or confused looking travellers and you could save yourself some waiting time.

8. Travelling with food, check the rules

We mentioned above about packing right, and that goes for food too. Food markets are everywhere this time of year, and jars of marmalade and novelty blocks of cheese make great presents. You just have to make sure you check whether the particular item you have bought is allowed on the plane or even allowed to be taken into the country you are travelling to. Airlines may have a slightly different policy when it comes to food, so it’s worth checking these rules in advance. 

Clarity Christmas Man with Suitcase box

Of course, this applies to drinks too. Don’t forget the regulations regarding liquids (100ml maximum in hand luggage) but there may even be limits to how many bottles you are legally allowed to carry into a country either from duty free or in your checked baggage.

9. Get to the front

Travelling with hand luggage only? Then we recommend you try and be one of the first to board your aircraft. Not because you can be the first in your seat, but being one of the first onboard ensures you get a space in the overhead lockers. Space fills up quickly, and any luggage items that can’t fit will be taken to the hold, adding unnecessary waiting around time at the carousel once you arrive.

10. And… breathe

Flight delays… Noisy passengers… Luggage dramas… Whatever happens, don’t forget to breathe. Travelling over the holidays can be a joyous yet stressful time. For any travel issues, our team at Clarity will be on hand ready to help. And for everything else? Well try to look at it this way, at least they’ll make for interesting travel tales to share with friends and family over Christmas dinner.


What are your top travel tips when travelling over the Christmas period? 

Clarity Christmas Man with Suitcase box