Friday, November 19, 2010

Holiday Air Travel and Gift Giving

Like everyone else, we've been watching news about the TSA, the body scanners and the "much too personal" physical searches. The whole thing has many people concerned about the health ramifications of the radiation, as well as being personally violated. There is actually a National Opt-Out Day (please note, the images on the site are a bit graphic) scheduled for Wednesday, November 24th, that urges people that are flying that day to make a stand against the whole thing. Hopefully the message will not only be received, but have an impact.

We, like many of our clients, have just opted out of air travel this year, period. We already passed on SEMA in Las Vegas and won't be flying anywhere this winter. Instead, we are shipping gifts across country to family and friends. It can be a bit pricey (cheaper than flying, though) and it's not the same as being there, but we're just not willing to subject ourselves and especially our children to the high doses of radiation or the invasive body searches. And, we can't expect our long distance loved ones to do any different.

One nice thing about saving the airfare, is that it leaves us with a bigger budget for the gifts, themselves. I know it's not how much you spend, but the sentiment that's important, but it feels good to have a bit more budget 'wiggle' room. I'm finding shopping funner this year! It seems I'm always busy, so I do quite a bit of my shopping on-line in the middle of the night. I've noticed that some on-line retailers offer shipping discounts during the holiday season, making it even more appealing.

Michael's automotive art is popular in the gift-giving department. Especially since we do offer Free Shipping anywhere in the World. We can ship your print directly to the recipient. You can be in Florida, wanting to send a gift to your cousin in Australia, and we can do that for you, free of charge. We'll even include a Christmas Card from you, if you like. Just let us know what you want it to say. The Planning for Christmas article in our Studio Newsletter, gives you a guideline for ordering deadlines to make it in time for Christmas. For International deliveries (Australia & Europe), we recommend a 2 week lead time.

This holiday season is definitely going to be different. I've heard that bookings at favorite kid-friendly holiday destinations, like Disney in Florida and California are down. As well as hot spots like Hawaii and other tropical destinations. And let's not forget North American ski resorts like Lake Placid, Aspen, Big White, Whistler and Banff. Maybe what needs to happen is a complete boycott of air-travel ... that would send the message, loud and clear!

Although, I have to admit that the on-line gift shopping is making our approach to the holidays a little less hectic and a bit more relaxed, I would like to see this "security" business resolved. Until it is, I don't see any air-travel in our near future.

Take care. Be safe. — Linda

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