Holiday travel usually means a trip to visit family or friends. After the stress of rushing through crowded airports and the joy of spending Christmas with your loved ones comes the quandary of getting the gifts you received back home with you. A little pre-planning can make a big difference, especially if you have a short turnaround time between the holiday and your departure time.
Here are some tips from expert travelers and experienced moms and dads.
- Double suitcase. When you are packing for your trip, use the smallest suitcase you can and place it inside a larger case. Then when it’s time to come home, you’ll have the extra suitcase, offering plenty of room for gifts.
- Pack as a family. Rather than letting everyone have their own suitcase, pack everyone’s stuff together and have one suitcase designated for all the gifts you are taking with you. Then use it for received gifts on the return trip.
- Pack a box. You can easily fit a flattened box, or two or three, in a large suitcase without losing room. These can then be used for boxing up your presents and shipping them home. Be sure to have labels and funds available, so you’re not rushing around at the last minute.
- Leave toys behind. This only works if you visit your parents regularly. Ask grandma and grandpa to create a toy box or shelf so that your kids will have them for the next visit. This decreases the amount of toys you have to transport on future trips, because your children will be looking forward to the stuff they keep at grandma’s house.
- Encourage cyber-gifting. Suggest that your loved ones have presents shipped directly to your home rather than having them wrapped under the tree. A card or small token that indicates what the gift is can still be shared to get that moment of surprise without you having to deal with transporting the actual object.
How do you get gifts home after a holiday trip?