The holidays are a prime time for travel. According to AAA, more than 46 million people were expected to hit the road, board a bus or hop on a flight somewhere over Thanksgiving weekend, and plenty of others go away for Christmas or New Year's Eve. If you're one of them, you're likely chugging away, trying to get work done, or figuring out who'll dog sit for a week. Have you thought about what to do with the pool during this absence? Leaving it unattended can mean more work and expenses at the next maintenance visit. It's important to have a plan to ensure the pool remains in good shape while you're off enjoying the holidays. 

Give it a quick inspection
Take a look around and see if everything is in place. You never know when inclement weather will roll in, and you don't want some of your personal belongings to blow away or end up in the pool. While on your inspection, see if there's anything that should be stored in the house or a shed. Close any umbrellas that can get damaged by heavy gusts of wind. Either bring your lawn furniture inside or tie it down. Make sure it's in a place where it won't get damaged if it rains. Once that's done, try to recruit some extra help.

Enlist the help of a neighbor
Just like you'd have a neighbor gather your mail for you, it's a good idea to ask around for someone to keep an eye on your swimming pool. Make sure you ask someone who's reliable or responsible. You don't want it to be awkward if you come home to a mess of a backyard.

Put together a little list of things that'll need maintenance while you're gone. This should include emptying the skimmer basket and picking up any large branches or items that fall into the water. If you allow this person to use your pool as an incentive, be upfront about your pool rules and encourage them to not swim alone. 

Have an appointment squared away
Prior to heading to your relative's place, make sure you schedule an appointment with your pool maintenance company. With such an influx of people traveling, it might be a busy time, so book early to ensure you'll have someone taking care of chemical balances and little repairs while you're away. If you live out west, call Fort Worth, Phoenix or San Diego pool service professionals. They can come take care of your pool even if you're not home. 

Before you leave the house, do one last check to make sure the gate around the pool has been locked and see if there's anything obvious that needs to be done. Taking these steps can put your mind at ease while you're away for the holidays. When you get home, you'll be able to relax from your travels with a quick dip in the pool.