Hang out with us to plan your holiday getaway

What’s the best time to launch a Thanksgiving getaway? Will Interstate 95 be as slow as ever this year? Are there any new bottlenecks facing D.C. travelers?

This is the time of year when our travel obsessions turn away from the daily commute and focus on long-distance visits with friends and family, or a shopping trip to the mall.

Join us here at noon Thursday for a live webcast discussing the questions that arise among local travelers at holiday time. Post Metro Girl Dana Hedgpeth and I will talk with a panel of people very familiar with those concerns — and they have answers, whether you’re preparing for a trip to the airport, a long drive, or gift-buying expedition on Black Friday and beyond.

We’ll all chat in the hangout, but then we’ll live stream the discussion to the Dr. Gridlock blog.

I’ve collected some of your getaway questions that came in during my online chat Monday. Dana has some information to share about taking Metro to the airports, and she’ll be watching for new questions that come in during the Thursday chat.

You will be able to reach us via Twitter, by messaging @drigridlock using the hashtag #gridchat, and we’ll also be looking for comments here. Before the show starts, you can submit questions at the end of this posting, or by sending e-mails to transportation@washpost.com .

Dana and I will be webcasting from The Post’s studio, and you can watch us live, but our panelists will be joining us via a Google+ Hangout.

This will be our first-ever show of this type, and we hope you’ll enjoy the new format. We thought this would be a great way to share information about a topic that will be on the minds of many thousands of travelers this week. But we’d also like to hear your suggestions on topics for future shows about local transportation concerns — and there will be an opportunity later to join us in our Gridlock hangout.

Robert Thomson is The Washington Post’s “Dr. Gridlock.” He answers travelers’ questions, listens to their complaints and shares their pain on the roads, trains and buses in the Washington region.
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