How do you deal with travel and traffic while on vacation?


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There is no secret to the perfect vacation trip when everyone is on the road or in the air at the same time, for the same reason you are. Despite your best efforts, it’s probably going to suck. But we take advantage of it every year, for good reason. Today’s question is about dealing with the stress of travel and traffic while on vacation.

When I was little, back in the days when everyone had a competent GPS in their pocket at all times, my dad would drive my family from our house in New Jersey to my aunt’s house in the middle of Long Island. for Thanksgiving and Christmas. This normally two and a half hour trip could take more than three or even four, especially on Thanksgiving.

My dad is a pretty straightforward guy; someone needed to drive, so they did. My mom handled stress through planning, which for her was to quickly switch between all the local traffic and weather stations in New York City to determine which bridge or freeway was blocked at any given time. As is often the case, especially along the I-495 corridor, often all would be, so I don’t recall that helping much.

I, a restless kid who car sick easily, was just trying to sleep the whole trip. When iPods and MP3 players became a thing, I was that cranky teenager sitting in the backseat until my ears ached from those damn headsets Apple gave you.

According to the years, my family separated; I’d end up in the car with my two older brothers, which of course is the coolest car you’d rather be in when you were a kid. And these rides definitely seemed to go a little faster. On the one hand, the music tended to be better.

Everyone’s travel routine is a little different – how do you get the most out of yours? This year, part of my family recovered from COVID in the past week, so we probably won’t be getting together; also, the aunt we used to visit passed away suddenly last year. These days, I look back fondly on those three-hour car journeys.

Let us know how you to deal with or get the most out of your vacation trips in the comments below. We’ll put together some of the best answers later today.

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