It doesn't help that you're often going to a family gathering that's stressful enough. But whether you're going by plane, train, or automobile, travel makes everything that much trickier. The trip may flip your kid out to such a degree that he's no good for whatever you do when you get there -- or she may use up every ounce of good behavior in transit and then have none left for the main event. It doesn't help that travel often wears you out as well, leaving you less able to do the kind of environment-changing and patience-showing and bag-of-tricks-wielding that often help your child hold it together.
Ideally, you'd make it through the holidays without having to leave home. If there's no avoiding that over the river and through the woods and into the air, though, read my articles about calming child turbulence, finding airline accommodations, getting a rental car suited to your child, keeping your kid in a car seat, amusing your child while on the road, and filling all those boring moments in waiting areas and the back rooms of relatives' houses where you've fled for a little peace. Do you have some holiday travel tips for your fellow parents? Share them on the Readers Respond page.