How to Survive Thanksgiving Travel

Traffic jam
The look of Thanksgiving holiday traffic

More than 48.7 million people are expected to hit the road and skies this Thanksgiving – an increase of over one million travelers from last year. According to AAA Travel, this represents the highest number of travelers since 2007.

That’s a lot of people heading out to celebrate Thanksgiving!

Traveling by Car

The majority of these people (about 44 million) will travel by car. That means a lot of traffic. If you are one of those millions, it might be helpful to know the best times to be on the road.

Waze, a traffic and navigation app, analyzed previous holiday traffic data to determine the days to avoid being on the road. The days leading up to Thanksgiving – Tuesday after 12pm and Wednesday all day – are the busiest. They predict an increase in accidents of 33%. Thursday is the day to travel if possible as the roads will be relatively quiet.

Sunday will be another day to avoid. Waze estimates traffic jams will increase by 240%.

Traveling by Airplane

Airports will be busy over Thanksgiving
Airports will be busy over Thanksgiving

With almost 4 million travelers taking to the skies over the holiday weekend, airports will be crowded and planes will be full. Security lines are likely to be long, so if you are traveling, plan to arrive extra early at the airport.

Keep all essentials in a bag you can put under your seat and not in your carry-on suitcase. When flights are full, the chance of having to gate-check your bag increases. You don’t want to have to scramble at the last minute to get the things you need out of your bag.

If your flight gets cancelled (hopefully not), head to a customer service counter. While in line, also get on the phone to a customer service rep. You might try calling one of the airline’s international numbers; sometimes you can get connected quicker that way. It’s worth jotting down those numbers before you leave home.

Staying Connected While Stuck in Traffic

If you are traveling overseas, our Pocket Wi-Fi hotspot is a great companion. It gives you a secure and reliable Wi-Fi connection. But did you know it also works great in the U.S.? (You can get up to 5 GB of data for only $50/month until end of December 2016!)

If you find yourself stuck in traffic, the Wi-Fi Hotspot will help you stay connected to your family and friends waiting for you. You can tether up to five devices on one hotspot, and with unlimited data, you’ll be able to catch up all on all your emails, update your social media with your travel progress, and research places you might want to visit – after you’ve enjoyed your Thanksgiving dinner.