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by Rob Porter | November 08, 2022

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With Halloween out of the way, it’s almost time to jump directly into The Holiday Season: Part I, or as some like to call it, Thanksgiving. If you’re a college student, you’re about to get a nice break in the action where you can visit friends and family, get some much-needed rest, and maybe even score some free food (more on that later). So, if you’re in need of some ideas about how to spend your break, look no further-here’s our ultimate guide to surviving your Thanksgiving break.

Plan Ahead

Whether you’re traveling by car, train, bus, or by plane, you’ve got some preparations to make. If you’re flying, it would be best to check out flights as soon as possible, as airfare prices are likely to go up as your departure date approaches. If you’re driving, make certain that your vehicle is well maintained, isn’t overdue for an oil change, and has four good tires along with a spare and all the necessary tools, just in case. If you use your phone’s GPS feature in your car, be sure to remember your car charger.

When it comes to packing it’s always best to have more than you need. If you're way overdue for some serious laundry and you’ll have access to a washer and dryer at home, your break could be a perfect opportunity to get that out of the way. Along with clothes and other necessities, pack some fun stuff for yourself as well. This could be a book you’re reading, your sweet handheld gaming system, or maybe some board games to play with your friends and family.

Lastly, and most importantly, bring some studying materials along on your trip. Yes, I know how boring that sounds, but you might find yourself with some extra time to prepare for those midterms that are coming up. Nothing’s worse than cramming the night before a big test, so take it easy, study little by little, and let yourself absorb the material over a long period of time. This will help you get into good habits and will be a valuable lesson in managing your time.

Friends and Family

If you’ve got friends back home, now would be a great time to schedule what has become known as a “Friendsgiving.” If you’re unfamiliar with Friendsgiving, it’s basically the same as Thanksgiving except you spend it with friends and it typically takes place on a different day. Most Friendsgiving feasts are comprised of a potluck, where the host asks a group of friends to bring their favorite food items to the celebration. Depending on your friends and their culinary abilities, this could turn out very well, or not so much. Either way, hosting a Friendsgiving is sure to be a good time.

Thanksgiving break is the perfect time to catch up with family members you might not see too often. Whether it’s your favorite cousin or that wacky uncle of yours, make time for conversation. If you feel yourself getting fatigued, escape to your old room and fire up that handheld. Lastly, never miss an opportunity to speak to some of the older people in your family-they possess great wisdom and usually have interesting stories to tell. Plus, they’ll be thrilled to hear all about your studies and to see how you’ve grown.

Set Goals

Now that the dust from the beginning of the school year has settled, take some time to think of ways to improve yourself and your experience at school. This could include the way in which you manage your time, balance your studies and your social life, or the way you handle your finances.

Create a plan that maximizes efficiency but that also provides plenty of time for rest. Additionally, if you don’t follow any type of exercise routine, now is the best time to start. Try to think of physical activities that you enjoy and that can be done around campus, and leave some room in your schedule each day for exercise.

Free Food

Yes friends, after any Thanksgiving celebration what do we have? Leftovers, and lots of them. This is the perfect opportunity to swoop down like a vulture and gather up as much free food as you can to take back with you. If you’ve got lots of family members who are competing for said leftovers, give them the old “poor college student” story and they should back right off. All those leftovers will save you some sweet cash between now and Christmas break, which will allow you to get caught up or buy some really cool new stuff.

Thanksgiving break is right around the corner, so now is the time to set up your travel arrangements and make sure you’re all ready to go. Make sure you have fun and let yourself relax, and above all else, be safe. Enjoy your break!

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