Thanksgiving is a wonderful time of year for a lot of people, and is often a great excuse for people to visit relatives that they have not seen in some time. And while this may result in some headbutting over some stupid argument, I think overall Thanksgiving is a positive family experience. The only negative part of it is that it is right at the cusp of winter weather, which means that you are going to be dealing with a lot of travel-related problems; it is, after all, one of the busiest travel days of the year. Whether it is getting snowed in at the airport or getting stuck in a ditch on the road, which can vary from inconvenient to frustrating to literally life-threatening. That is why we have prepared some handy Thanksgiving travel tips to ensure that you and yours are kept safe on the road.
As far as safety goes, flying is the way to go – and that is not just for winter reasons, either. While it is definitely more expensive, and it can be somewhat nerve-wracking, flying is statistically safer than traveling on the road. You certainly have to worry about weather delays, but if the airlines are down for that, it is all too unsafe to be driving anyway. Either way, the day before and the days after Thanksgiving Day are among the busiest travel days of the year, and as far as flying goes, it can be significantly more expensive for that reason. Interestingly enough, flying on Thanksgiving Day is actually cheaper than the surrounding days since people are so inclined to be there with plenty of time to spare. If you plan on driving, this is something that you absolutely MUST be cautious about. Some years it is a lot safer due to a relatively less snow-filled season (and it is especially less of a problem for people in the south, though not a nonexistent one), but no matter what, you should always be mindful of everything around you and of the potential perils. It is very easy to lose control of your car on slippery roads, and it is just as easy to find yourself in a traffic collision because you or another car was unable to see the road in front of you.
There are basic Thanksgiving travel tips that I can certainly give you; for instance, make sure that your automobile is in proper shape. Check for any broken headlights or taillights, make sure that your engine is running smoothly, keep yourselves buckled in at all times (you would be amazed just how easy it is to rollover a car, even at low speeds!), etc. But the serious stuff you should consider is the kind of stuff a lot of people wouldn’t. For instance, a can of gasoline can help you keep going for longer in the event that you are stranded with no gas station in sight; blankets (particularly thick ones) will keep you safe from the freezing temperatures – and please do not keep your car running for the heat! That is the best way to find yourself meeting your maker thanks to carbon monoxide poisoning. You can read more about things to do to prepare for winter weather in my article here! Another option altogether that is perhaps a little better than driving if you cannot take flight is to take public transportation, such as a train or a bus. Not only do these options allow you to be more well-rested and be able to put your trust in someone whose job it is to know all of the “rules of the road” in this kind of environment, it also ensures that if the vehicle becomes stranded for whatever reason, there are contingencies in place to help out and other people as well, meaning you can share and share alike to stay safe.
There are other Thanksgiving travel tips that you should digest, but these cover a lot of the most important bases. And no matter what, you should not take lightly the potential dangers of traveling on one of the busiest travel days of the year; it is nice to be able to see loved ones, but it is not worth putting your life at serious risk over, especially if it it can be avoided.