How to Travel Presents Over the Holidays

Protect your Gifts

BubblewrapAnna Hoychuk/shutterstock

If you’re heading home for the holidays, chances are the suitcases will be filled with gifts, even if you have not purchased them just yet. (Can not figure out what to purchase? Listed below would be 100 Christmas gift ideas for people that are not able to search for.) However, without taking the appropriate measures to shield them, you might be left with a heap of broken gifts–or even no gifts at all–upon arrival. Follow these suggestions to make sure your gifts remain intact throughout your vacation air travel.

Verify They meet TSA requirements

TSAArina P Habich/Shutterstock

All of the effort you’ll put into packaging and lugging around bags of gifts would be null if these gifts get confiscated by TSA. Some common culprits around the holidays are snow globes (yes, which liquid should be 3.4 oz or less, also), sporting equipment, toy firearms or some other toy that resembles a weapon, and cans of food which contain more than 3.4 oz of liquid. As these are allowed in checked luggage, you can’t keep them in your carry-on. Though there’s a means to get back items recorded by TSA, it’ll be easier on everybody if you verify that your gifts meet that the TSA requirements.

Do not wrap gifts


TSA agents may want to unwrap them whenever they see something potentially suspicious during security checks. And no, it is not because they are Scrooges or even Grinches. Your very best choice is to pack additional wrapping paper and finish the trimmings when you get to your destination. Additionally, be sure you stay away from those by TSA.

But in case you still need to wrap these…


Put in a bag that is checked. TSA is less inclined to unwrap them this way. Adhere to these recommendations to fit whatever you need into your luggage, such as heavy gifts. One exception: Never pack glass or delicate items in your carry-on. You will never understand how your luggage could be tossed around after it leaves the side.

Package them in the Ideal suitcase


Regardless of what type of gifts you’re attracting, using tough shell luggage automatically increases the probability of your gifts staying in one piece. Use your clothing and bubble wrap as padding. If you do not have a tough shell bag, put heavy gifts at the bottom, place lightweight items on the very top, and double up on the cushioning. And definitely do not create these 11 common luggage packing errors.

Keep valuable gifts with you

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You need to already have these 11 items to at all times keep in your carry-on, but beneficial and/or delicate gifts should also be in your luggage. This way, you have complete control on what happens to these on the airplane.

Be Ready to gate check


Air travel consistently spikes throughout the holidays, which means more people and luggage to a plane which does not have much space to begin with. (Follow these 12 suggestions to remain comfy on a busy flight.) Other passengers will definitely have the exact same idea as you also pack gifts as much baggage as they can bring. That means your odds of finding overhead storage room are slim–another reason to keep valuables in a bag that will fit under the seat before you.

Bring Additional tote for your own gifts


You know you’re not likely to leave your vacation family amassing weatherproof, and there’s no guarantee that your luggage will have sufficient space for your loot once everyone else’s gifts are outside. Pack a duffel bag which can be folded in the way there and may be checked or carried-on as necessary for the return flight. Do not overlook these vacation travel tips every wise traveler should memorize.

Ship gifts to your destination

ShippingJeramey Lende/Shutterstock

When there’s any doubt your gifts will meet TSA requirements or fit in your luggage or arrive in one piece, send them. This should be a given for internet shoppers. A few sites, such as Amazon, provide free transport if your invoice reaches a certain volume. (Check out these additional little-known Amazon hacks for internet shoppers.) Simply send them to your destination–only let whoever’s speech you use know they are coming–wrap them once you enter town, and you’re done! Shipping through USPS or UPS may be pricey, especially in case you purchase shipping insurance, but you avoid the hassle entirely.