Tag Archives: Christmas travel

Christmas spirit in your carry on

No I don’t mean a bottle of hooch – although it might be a good idea bearing in mind that this week is the busiest travel time of the year and no doubt the roads, highways, airports and ferry terminals will be chock full of Christmas travellers.  A bit like the Great Migration.  If the herd moves you better follow otherwise you will be left out.

So you know it is going to be frustrating – especially for those experienced travellers who will stamp their feet and sigh at the person who doesn’t have their passport ready and open at the picture page.  Experienced travellers keep their carry on down to a minimum aerodynamically designed bags…. for the person who travels once a year or maybe less this is like entering another world.  They struggle on board the flight with coats and bags and purses.  Maybe they don’t understand the etiquette of only storing your carry on in the bin over your seat.  They don’t do this often you see.  This is a special trip to have Christmas dinner with family far away.  So haul out a little bit of that Christmas spirit from your carry on and help that 4.10″ lady put her oversized unwieldy bag in the overhead bin.  Look how nice that made you feel.  By sharing the Christmas spirit with her you got a little dusting of Christmas spirit on your shoulders and it feels good.

And when the plane arrives finally and lands, you as the experienced traveller will know that everyone is immediately going to stand up and start craning their necks to see if the doors have opened yet.  You know that it takes a while to hook up to the bridge and the plane generally only has one exit and yes it will take a while for everyone to get off.  For the Christmas traveller however this is great excitement.  They are just that much closer to an exciting time with family and this strange and wonderful adventure is still not over.

As they get off the plane they will be somewhat bewildered and not really sure which way to go in the airport to get their bags.  Lend a hand and a smile.  You know this airport – point the way.  Be Christmassy…. it doesn’t hurt.  And just imagine – when they finally get to Goderich Ontario or Ketchum Idaho or wherever the family is – imagine them telling people around the Christmas table about this kind person they met on their trip who helped them with their bags and showed then how to use the on board tv and even showed them where to collect their bags.  You won’t see it or hear it but you will feel it – the Christmas Spirit.

Feliz Navidad – and get out of my way

Yeah – the Christmas spirit sometimes doesn’t spread to the airport.  This weekend the airports all over the world will be packed to capacity, flights will be late, people will get bumped and sooner or later the question will be asked “Are we having fun yet?”  It’s just a fact of life that travel over Christmas – particularly the few days just before Christmas – tend to be the busiest and the most stressful.  This is not only for the travellers but also for airport staff who have to take the brunt of people’s frustrations.

Come on Santa – you know the luggage rules!

So I am not going to give you the usual advice – arrive early, don’t pack your gifts – etc.  We hear this every year – ad nauseum.  Instead I am going to give you some other advice for coping with Christmas travel over this time.


Honestly – it works every time.  Just try it!  It is very hard to resist a smile, hard to be angry or irritated with someone smiling at you.  It will cut the tension i n half.


In these days of forgotten manners it really does make a difference when you ask nicely and add a please or a thank you.


Seriously – don’t turn around suddenly when you are standing in a line-up.  You could kill someone.