Holiday travel sucks. Roads are crowded. Airports are crowded. Hotels are crowded.

These five tips have all been deeply researched, and all were learned the hard way. I'd like to pass this knowledge along to you.

  • 1

    Speed Traps Are Named That For A Reason

    Speed trap towns have earned their name, and for good reason. Those radars are like Santa. They're always looking, even when you can't see them. Obey all traffic laws in towns with populations that hover around 12.

  • 2

    If You're Flying, Arrive No Later Than An Hour Early

    I've missed a flight on Christmas weekend before, and I'm pretty sure that's as close to being in Hell as I want to get. The person I was with thought that 20 minutes would be an adequate amount of time to park, get our bags checked, get our free government sponsored pat-downs, and walk onto the plane. I wound up stuck in Houston for an extra six hours. Get there early. You'll be glad you did.

    Which leads me to.....

  • 3

    Double Check Your Luggage Before Leaving The House

    I've left just about every necessity known to man behind at some point in my life. I've left behind the pump for the air mattress, underwear, toothbrush, phone charger...you name it. Double check before you leave, then check one more time just to be sure.

    Also, trust no one when it comes to checking to make sure everything is packed. Do it yourself.

  • 4

    Call Before You Leave

    Make sure the people that are expecting you are still expecting you. Nothing is worse than showing up for a party that has been canceled and being left to find a last minute hotel room. It happens more than polite society wants to admit.

  • 5

    Pack A Pair Of Headphones

    Thanks to the technological wonder that is earbuds with built in microphones, you can use these buds to listen to music (you can stream us 24/7 from our app by the way), audio books...you name it. Just pretend to be taking a call. You can now drown out the awkward questions from grandma, the sounds of children fighting over who has the coolest toy, and the constant nagging about how you're being a jerk and are disconnected. God bless headphones.