Travel Tips and Ideas

6 Thanksgiving Travel Tips To Help You Get Through Turkey Day

by Isabelle Raffin | Nov 01, 2022
thanksgiving travel tips

Thanksgiving can be a wonderful time for friends and family to gather together. Tons of turkey and stuffing will be served at dinner tables across the country. Millions of people will take to the skies and roads to partake in the festivities. Even with all of the goodwill, traveling during the Thanksgiving holiday can get frustrating. You might want to consider putting together a game plan to make your journey successful. We’ve come up with a handy travel to-do list for the turkey lover in you. It may help you travel with a little less drama during the holiday.


#1. Choosing Better Travel Days

The day before Thanksgiving and the following Sunday are usually the busiest travel days during the holiday1. So, consider trying to bypass the crowds and the traffic by choosing less popular days. Think about traveling the Tuesday before or even the morning of Thanksgiving. For your journey home, think about leaving the Friday after turkey day or the following Monday. You may find cheaper flights and clearer roads thanks to your foresight.


#2. Preparing for the Road Ahead

If you choose to travel by car, planning your route in advance could make all the difference. Use a GPS system or your smartphone to navigate and find alternative routes. If possible, avoid heavily traveled roads. You may even opt to take a more scenic route to and from your destination. The journey may be a little longer, but at least you may not be stuck behind a sea of cars.


#3. Keep Calm and Carry-On

If you are flying this year, consider just bringing carry-on bags. Many airlines charge a fee for checked bags these days so taking only a carry-on bag could save you a few bucks. Also, this can help reduce the possibility of your bags getting delayed or lost. You would be amazed by how much you can fit into a carry-on bag if you pack it right. Try rolling your clothes into neat cylinders and opt for just one extra pair of shoes.


#4. Travel Apps are Your Friends

Downloading travel apps to your smartphone ahead of time to keep informed of flight delays and traffic issues can be very helpful. You can use your airline’s app to monitor your flight status and rebook a flight in case of a cancellation or delay. Try downloading the FlightAware app for real-time flight tracking and customizable alerts. For road trippers, the Waze app can be a useful tool. It connects you with other drivers who send real-time updates on traffic and accidents. Waze can also be great at finding alternative roads to your destination.


#5 Staying Zen

Mishaps aren’t fun, but they do happen. Events outside of your control may threaten the whole trip. Through it all, tell yourself, “It’s okay” and try to stay as relaxed as possible. You may be able to protect yourself from future frustration by preparing for the unexpected. If you’re flying, try to book the earliest flight of the day if your airline is prone to delays. You could have a better chance of leaving on time. Arriving at the airport a few hours early to leave plenty of time for security checkpoints is another way to help keep yourself on schedule. Consider building in a couple hours between connections in case of delays. If you’re driving you can prepare by packing snacks for the road, especially if you’ll have children in the car. Planning stops along the way to stretch and take bathroom breaks can help everyone in the car stay refreshed and comfortable. Lastly, try sharing driving duties if you have a long drive ahead of you.


#6. Getting Travel Protection

Traveling during Thanksgiving can be a gamble, so try not to wing it. Travel protection is a way to help protect the pre-paid, non-refundable parts of your trip. For example, if you’re renting a car, you may want Rental Car Damage coverage. If you’re booking a hotel, you might want Trip Cancellation coverage. If you’re flying, try finding a plan with Trip Delay and Baggage Delay benefits. In case something unexpected happens on your trip, you may be eligible for reimbursement of covered losses. You also have the support of non-insurance assistance services that can provide pre-trip assistance and help with reservations. For more information and to compare plans, visit


This list can be your go-to for travel ideas this Thanksgiving holiday. The less you have to deal with travel hang-ups, the more you can focus on turkey, family and friends. We wish you a Happy Thanksgiving!


This blog links to websites for the following companies, which are not affiliated with Travel Insured International or United States Fire Insurance Company: Travel Channel, Waze, and Flight Aware.






This website contains highlights of the plans developed by Travel Insured International, which include travel insurance coverages underwritten by United States Fire Insurance Company, Principal Office located in Morristown, New Jersey, under form series T7000 et al, T210 et al and TP-401 et al, and non-insurance Travel Assistance Services provided by C&F Services and for WTP Cruise only, AwayCare and Blue Ribbon Bags. The terms of insurance coverages in the plans may vary by jurisdiction and not all insurance coverages are available in all jurisdictions. Insurance coverages in these plans are subject to terms, limitations and exclusions including an exclusion for pre-existing medical conditions. In most states, your travel retailer is not a licensed insurance producer/agent, and is not qualified or authorized to answer technical questions about the terms, benefits, exclusions and conditions of the insurance offered or to evaluate the adequacy of your existing insurance coverage. Your travel retailer may be compensated for the purchase of a plan and may provide general information about the plans offered, including a description of the coverage and price. The purchase of travel insurance is not required in order to purchase any other product or service from your travel retailer. CA DOI toll free number is 800-927-4357. The cost of your plan is for the entire plan, which consists of both insurance and non-insurance components. Individuals looking to obtain additional information regarding the features and pricing of each travel plan component, please contact Travel Insured International. P.O. Box 6503, Glastonbury, CT 06033; 855-752-8303; [email protected]; California license #0I13223. While Travel Insured International markets the travel insurance in these plans on behalf of USF, non-insurance components of the plans were added to the plans by Travel Insured and Travel Insured does not receive compensation from USF for providing the non-insurance components of the plans.