Top ten travel tips for the busy holiday season

The busiest time of the year at airports is upon us, the Christmas travel season. Here are a few reminders to make travel easier and enjoyable this holiday season.

Check your I.D.

Ensure you have proper identification and documentation for all travellers, including children and infants. For domestic travel, I.D. must be current (non-expired).

For international travel, travel documents must be presented at check-in. Each country on your itinerary may have different entry requirements, including the physical condition of a passport or extended validity of a passport beyond your intended departure date. Check national entry requirements with WestJet well before departure date.

Arrive early

Because it’s such a busy time of year for travel, prepare for large crowds at the airport. WestJet suggests arriving at the airport no less than two hours before a domestic flight and three hours before an international flight. Guests should complete security, immigration and customs and be at their departure gate one hour before departure. Those who do not meet check-in, baggage drop or boarding cut-off times may be denied travel.

It’s also a good idea to give yourself plenty of time to get to the airport. Bad weather and traffic snarls can make for a longer drive to the airport than normal this time of year.

Check-in 24 hours before you go

WestJet offers three convenient self-serve check-in options: web, mobile app and kiosk. The airline suggests checking in 24 hours before scheduled departure time on the WestJet app and saving your boarding passes to your phone. Guests should also enter their email and phone number during the check-in process to ensure they receive updates related to their flight.

If a guest checks-in online and has no checked bags, to save time at the gate they can present their travel documents at a kiosk upon airport arrival for verification.

Carry-on baggage

Carry-on baggage must meet WestJet’s size requirements as listed on our website. Each guest is permitted one piece of carry-on baggage and one personal item. Excess and oversized carry-on baggage must be checked in and will be subject to applicable baggage fees.

In addition, be sure to pack special items like identification, wallets, purses, medication, mobile devices, keys and valuable items such as cash, jewelry and electronics into carry-on baggage.

Ask Juliet, WestJet’s Facebook Messenger chatbot assistant

Juliet is never asleep during the holidays, so she is always ready to provide instant support and quick answers on many topics, ranging from baggage guidelines and in-flight entertainment, to flight booking and flight status. To chat with Juliet, please visit: and click “Get Started”.

WestJet Mobile App

Before you fly, make sure to download the latest version of WestJet’s iPhone or Android app for free access to WestJet’s inflight entertainment system, WestJet Connect, where more than 500 hours of movies and TV programs are available to make your flight more enjoyable. WestJet Connect also offers pay-per-use Internet access.

WestJet’s app also offers convenient solutions for managing your trip, checking flight status and rewards information. More features can be found here.

Keep gifts unwrapped

WestJet suggests that you do not wrap gifts before heading to the airport. Airport security screeners may unwrap items in checked or carry-on baggage, causing delays at security. Pack wrapping paper in your checked luggage, and have a wrapping party on arrival at your destination.

Make sure your pet is okay to fly

WestJet does not accept kennels as checked baggage or as cargo between December 15 and January 6, although certain small animals may be able to travel in the aircraft cabin; visit WestJet’s website for details.

Pack your patience

Holiday travel can be stressful, but you can cope by being well-prepared. Everyone wants to get to their destination to share Christmas with family and friends, a little patience goes a long way to help make the journey stress-free.

Love where you’re going this holiday season

From all 13,000 of us at WestJet, Merry Christmas. We thank you for your continued support and look forward to welcoming you on board.