This is a cautionary tale, in list form. It is based on my experience flying from Ohio to Atlanta to San Antonio yesterday, with a three-hour layover. The takeaway here is that I do not recommend traveling on Christmas day. I do not recommend it no matter how cheap your tickets. Here are the top-five reasons why:
- Multi-baby planes. Let me clarify here: I am pro-baby. And, I empathize with the challenges of the traveling parent. That said, this is a simple equation to consider when traveling. More families are traveling, and this means more babies. Consequently, there's a chance at least one will be crying during any given minute of the flight. And sometimes, two or three will be crying at once. Noise cancelling headphones can only do so much.
- The people at the airport DO NOT want to be at work. Before we were greeted for our Christmas dinner in a restaurant in the airport, we heard a five-minute argument about how our server was not going to take any more tables, hell no, because she had to get to Christmas dinner with her family. And a rebuttal something along the lines of, I have a family, too, and I actually got here on time. It went on.
- Things are out of stock. I don't think shipments come in on the holidays, so good luck getting your favorite brand of gum or sparkling water.
- Ukuleles. In my experience, there's a better chance you'll be in the waiting area next to a girl playing the ukulele as her boyfriend rubs her leg.
- Bathroom bathers. Perhaps because people are going to meet family or friends/coming from meeting family or friends, it seemed the women I encountered in the bathrooms were more thorough. One seemed to be washing her hair in the sink, another flossing her teeth, complete with the pop-floss-out-of-space-between-teeth projectile action. My husband's experience, however, was far more disturbing. He reported a rather hefty and weathered man with his shirt off at the sink, wash cloth in hand, working on his pits.
|Image by: William Fisher|
So there you have it. It's up to you, but in my experience the cost-benefit ratio of traveling cheap on Christmas day turned out to be a mediocre deal. My family was more than worth it, and I had a magical time in Ohio as evidenced by my previous post. But, I'll be damned if there isn't a cost-efficient alternative waiting for me next year.
(I'll post about writing this coming weekend. Now, to decompress, relax, and enjoy being home.)