11/23/2011 09:18 am ET Updated Nov 29, 2011

Holiday Travel Safety: How To Avoid Travel Health Hazards

It's official -- the holiday travel season is upon us. Historically, the Wednesday before Thanksgiving has kicked off the season, bringing droves of passengers to the air and the roads -- this year AAA predicted 42.5 million Americans would be traveling over that holiday weekend (a 4 percent increase from last year).

Of course, holiday travel can bring its unique set of metaphorical headaches, from packed planes and crowded roads to travel delays and holdups. But it comes with some real health concerns, as well -- as flu and cold season is ramping up, for instance, we might be sharing a seat with that passenger who seems to be single-handedly keeping the tissue factories in business this year. Or, we could end up stuck in a land of airport fast food with no healthy choices in sight, suffer from motion sickness by the first "Are we there yet?" in the car, or unknowingly be susceptible to a serious health problem exacerbated by plane travel.

Ready or not, 'tis the season for travel, so here's your primer on how to get through it unscathed.