Best holiday trips on film to get you through Christmas travel

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It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas, everywhere you fly. From frazzled families to tired TSA agents to the longest lines ever, the frenzied holiday travel season is here. Get ready by downloading these holiday favorites to get you through your Christmas commute.

It has been said that art imitates life: scenes of frantic families rushing through crowded airports, riding packed trains and bonding over road trips have played out on film screens for decades. Get into the holiday travel spirit — or pass the time en route to your holiday destination — by watching these classic travel-inspired holiday films.

Babes in Toyland (1986)

During a Christmas Eve blizzard, 11-year-old Lisa travels to Toyland where many adventures ensue, including trying to stop mean old Barnaby Barnacle from not only marrying Mary Contrary but also taking over Toyland. Get lost in this cute Christmas classic while lounging in a concourse chair at the airport.

Home Alone (1990)

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Who hasn’t arrived at the airport only to discover he or she has forgotten to pack something like a toothbrush or phone charger? Tough break, but at least you didn’t forget your eight-year-old son. Luckily, Kevin McAllister is able to defend his home from a pair of burglars in this comedy that will have you laughing all the way to your destination — even if you’ve watched it every Christmas for the last 20 years.

Home Alone 2: Lost in New York (1992)

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A year after he was left home alone on Christmas, Kevin McCallister winds up separated from his family again. Nine-year-old Kevin boards a plane bound for the Big Apple while his family boards a plane headed to Miami, Fla. Despite the reality that it is increasingly harder for folks to inadvertently board the wrong plane, most parents can relate to the struggle of keeping tabs on the whole family at the airport.

I’ll Be Home for Christmas (1998)

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College student Jake Wilkinson hasn’t been home for the holidays since his mother passed away. His father offers to give him a vintage Porsche if he comes home promptly on Christmas Eve. In a race against time, his nemesis Eddie and some bumps along the way, Jake strives to get home for Christmas. Relish in watching the antics that come with rushing home for the holidays from the comfort of your couch — or window seat.

Christmas with the Kranks (2004)

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Who hasn’t thought of skipping the craziness of the holidays and getting out of town? (We certainly have. We have some tips for trading traditions for travel). Fed up with the commercialization of Christmas, Luther Krank and his wife decide to skip the holiday and go on a vacation instead. That is, until their daughter decides to come home at the last minute to celebrate the holiday.

The Polar Express (2004)

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Don’t we all wish we could go to the North Pole? Follow a young boy and hop aboard the Polar Express bound for the North Pole. Children and the young at heart will get lost on this magical adventure – the perfect diversion to cries of “are we there yet?”

Unaccompanied Minors (2006)

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Snowed-in at a Midwestern airport, a group of unaccompanied minors are left to create their own holiday. With an unseasonably warmer winter in many parts of the U.S. this year, you have better odds of your unaccompanied minor causing chaos on the way to your destination than getting grounded at the airport.

The Holiday (2006)

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Ever wish you could swap your life for someone else’s? Two women swap their homes during Christmas and get the best Christmas gift ever; they find love (with Jude Law, no less). Solo travelers: here’s hoping Cupid’s arrow will shoot your way this holiday season.

4 Christmases (2008)

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Trying to get home for the holidays is hard enough. Trying to visit four sets of parents and celebrate four Christmases in one day? The struggle is real. In this fast-paced film, a couple’s Christmas trip to Fiji is derailed, forcing them to visit all four of their divorced parents on Christmas. Cue the groans and the laughter!

Black Nativity (2013)

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The holidays are often the catalyst for soul searching; be inspired with this heart-warming holiday movie that centers around a Baltimore teen who travels to New York City to spend Christmas with his estranged family. Along the way, he discovers the true meaning of family and faith.

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Love the Coopers (2015)

Four generations of the Cooper family are coming together for their annual Christmas celebration, but unexpected events lead to family bonding and a reminder of what the holidays are all about. When it comes to traveling for the holidays, expect the unexpected. Sometimes it’s not the destination, but the people you’re with, that matters. No matter whom you choose to celebrate the season with and where you choose to celebrate the holiday, bon voyage and best wishes this holiday season!

What’s your favorite holiday movie to watch while traveling? Nothing planned, book your next flight and update that Netflix queue.

(Main image: istockphoto.com/portfolio/RichLegg)

Best holiday trips on film to get you through Christmas travel was last modified: June 26th, 2019 by Lauren Mack
Author: Lauren Mack (163 posts)

Lauren Mack has traveled to 40 countries on five continents, including Cuba, New Zealand, Peru and Tanzania. For many years, she called China, and then Taiwan, home. Countries at the beginning of the alphabet, particularly Antarctica, Argentina and Australia are on her travel bucket list. Lauren is a multimedia travel and food journalist and explorer based in New York City.