We can all agree that even if you are headed for paradise, traveling is stressful. The planning is stressful, packing is THE WORST, and trying to navigate an airport is downright exhausting. Once you arrive you think the worst of it is over, but as many of us know when traveling anything and everything can happen especially when you are traveling with an entire cheer team! You really do live and learn when it comes to traveling with a cheer squad. When it comes to travel fails, I have made more than a few.
Below are rookie traveling mistakes when traveling with your team:
Never! I repeat: NEVER EVER put your uniform in your check in luggage. Uniforms need to be in your carryon at all times. Even if it cost money, PAY IT! Luggage gets lost all the time. When you are away at competition you do not have days for the airport to try and recover your luggage that never made it on the plane or worse, got put on the wrong plane.
If your uniform is in that lost luggage you will not be able to compete with your squad. There is nothing worse than traveling for a competition and then to not be able to compete because you luggage is lost. Don’t do it!
Missed it by THAT much!
Arrive early, like, really early to the airport. Flying is not an easy process. At times the process can take hours: checking in, going through security, and getting to your gate. So arrive early, arrange carpools because there is always at least one person on the team who parent is always running late. Today they cannot be late, if they can't get their kid there on time, someone else has got to do it! Arrange a carpool if you're worried about a certain squad member being late. Missing your flight because it took longer than expected to check in, happens.
Whatever you have to do to get your team there early? Do it.
Congratulations! You have made it to your destination, which is no easy feat.
Now for the easy part. You pile everyone into the rental car and get your team safely to the hotel. You drive up and your team starts booing you because the van is the color of your rival team! NOOOOO!!!!
This sounds like nothing, but your team will NEVER let you forget this one, believe me! This may not seem like a big deal, but keep your car color in mind when renting a van for competition.
Everyone has a uniform, check!
Made it on the flight, check!
Made it to the hotel, Check!
Realizing you booked the wrong hotel after driving 30 minutes outside of town to the hotel that was surprisingly inexpensive, check…
Check those addresses people! With hotel chains that all have the same name, you might think you are booking the hotel right down the street from the venue, but you accidentally clicked on the wrong link and booked the hotel 30 minutes out of the way. Sure, this isn't the worst thing that can happen, but after competing all day and getting stick in event traffic leaving the venue, having to drive 30+ minutes back to the hotel with a group full of cheerleaders is not ideal.
Traveling is stressful when planning a trip for yourself, let alone planning a trip for an entire cheer squad. Good luck, you are going to need it. Just remember: always keep your uniforms in your carry on, don’t be late to the airport, try and rent a car that matches your team colors, and check the address twice when booking a hotel room.
It is not a guarantee you will win at competition, but by avoiding these points, you will win at traveling!