This Is What Time You Should Get to the Airport for Thanksgiving Travel

If you're headed home for the holidays, you can be certain there's quite a lot in store for you, between packing your bags and piling up your plate with turkey and hearty home-cooked sides. While we're not saying you're guaranteed to Planes, Trains & Automobiles yourself all the way to your destination, we do admit that it's likely you'll experience satirical levels of travel drama simply because of the time of the year. It comes as no surprise that the week of Thanksgiving is one of the busiest travel times, and you can almost expect to encounter delays, inconveniences, or general headache-inducing drama. If you're flying, as many of us are, you should adjust your usual travel habits to accommodate these inconveniences.

For starters, plan on getting to the airport extra early. A Bustle article advises allowing a full two hours between your arrival at the airport and your flight taking off. This means accounting for things like increased traffic en route to the airport, parking your car, or dropping off a rental. Also keep in mind that with so many people traveling during the same set of days, security is going to be even worse than usual. Additionally, overbooked flights during the holidays typically translate into a domino effect of disgruntled passengers, all vying for the same seats on the next flight—and the next. If you miss your flight, you can pretty much commit to kissing your holiday happiness goodbye and going full-on Steve Martin for the duration of your break.

So if you want to make it home in one piece and actually enjoy a plate of turkey on Thanksgiving Day—not after everyone else in your family has taken their turn at the leftovers—do yourself a favor and get to the airport with plenty of time to spare. Take extra precautions like checking in early, printing your boarding pass at home, and opting for a simple carry-on instead of checked luggage. At the very worst, you'll be at the airport with extra time to spare, but it certainly beats the alternative.

What are your Thanksgiving travel plans this year? If you'll be homeward bound, head to the comments to share any flying advice you might have for the busiest time of the year.