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Survive Thanksgiving Travel (Courtesy of Travelocity)

November 17, 2014

SOUTHLAKE, TX – The travel experts are helping you survive the busiest travel day of the year with their 2014 Thanksgiving Travel Survival Guide, just released today. Over 24 million people are expected to travel over the Thanksgiving travel period, according to Airlines for America, so knowing how to cope with delays, which travel apps to download and what to expect at the airports can make all the difference.

“Last Thanksgiving significant weather events impacted many travelers and caused delays across the country,” said Courtney Scott, Travelocity’s Senior Editor. “Planning ahead and being prepared can ease the stresses of Thanksgiving travel this year.”

Top 10 Thanksgiving Travel Tips

Planes will fly full this year. Make sure you check-in online 24-hours in advance and check that you’ve got a seat assignment. Download your boarding pass and keep a printed copy in case your phone dies.

Look for “TSA PRE” on your boarding pass to see if you’ve pre-qualified for TSA Pre-Check. Members can avoid removing shoes, belts and laptops from carry-on luggage.

Try to pack in only a carry-on bag to avoid baggage fees, which typically start at $25 and up. If you do have to check a bag, paying online will save you a few bucks per bag. Check your airline’s website for a full list of potential fees – some may charge even for carry-on luggage.

Don’t chance missing your flight. Get to the airport at least two hours in advance of domestic flights and three hours for international flights. Double check your terminal and gate as it sometimes changes.

Make sure you don’t have oversized liquids. The 3-1-1 rule has been in effect for years yet passengers still get items such as cosmetics taken at the checkpoint.

Ship gifts ahead of time. Despite what you may think, shipping gifts ahead of time isn’t that much more expensive, and it’s a lot more convenient. The average baggage fee is about $25 for the first bag and even more for the second. But shipping a large flat-rate box with the USPS is about $16.95 and will arrive within three days.

Bring your own snacks from home to avoid paying for snack packs on board or over-paying at airport grab and go markets.

Before heading to the airport, check your local traffic reports for delays along your route and allow for more commute time if needed.

Pre-pay for parking online to get a discount on long-term parking fees.

Load-up your smart phone with travel apps that can help you re-book on the fly, track flights and get info on the go..

Thanksgiving Travel Apps

“Your smart phone is a huge resource while traveling,” says Scott. “Mobile apps can help with all aspects of travel, from re-booking on the fly to finding a taxi home.”

No longer does a person need to be a seasoned pro to travel like one. A multitude of additional apps are available that can keep passengers in the know about everything from the best airport eats to the best seats on a specific airplane.

How to Deal With Travel Delays

Follow your carrier on Twitter: Airlines are getting better and better at providing real-time travel updates via social media, especially Twitter.

If there is a delay: First, log-on to your carrier’s website and look for a voucher code or flexible travel policy that will allow you to change your flight without penalty. Simultaneously get on the line at the airport to talk to gate or ticket agent and check availability at airport hotels.

Know your passenger rights: Passengers have the right to get on the next available flight on their airline to their destination. That said, in the case of mass disruption, there might not be any available flights.

Never pack anything you can’t live without in checked baggage. If your flight is delayed or cancelled after you’ve checked your bags it could be quite a while before you get them back in your possession. Keep medications and chargers in your carry-on bag.

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