I’ve written before about Patrick, my beloved stylist at Bang Salon & Spa. In addition to giving great haircuts, Patrick also hands out stellar advice. Last night, for example, Patrick treated me to some holiday travel tips as he lopped off my overgrown locks.

1. Don’t be afraid to bargain Over the Thanksgiving weekend, Patrick’s flight home was overbooked. So the airline asked passengers to relinquish their seats in exchange for some mystery perks. Patrick stepped up to the counter and began negotiating.

2. Start high In a situation like this, you’ve got the upper hand, so Patrick asked for four round trip tickets and 50,000 miles to be used whenever, wherever he wanted. The airline employees laughed in his face.

3. Be patient Undaunted, Patrick and his partner waited quietly as the rest of the passengers boarded the plane. Patrick explained his logic: The worst that could happen is the pair would board the plane as planned. Then, just as the final boarding announcement was made, the airline capitulated and offered them three round trip tickets each and 10,000 miles if they elected to take a later plane. They did.

The moral of the story? The holidays are a stressful time to travel, but with patience and pluck, you might just win big.

Photograph by Darrow Montgomery.