Traveling is one of the best things people can do in their lives. It can also be super stressful. Things can always be much easier though. When figuring out how to maximize the fun times on your trip and offset any possible issues, a little planning pays huge dividends. To help get your journey off on the right, relaxing, track here are the 10 Best Tips For Stress Free Travel we’ve been able to find.
1. Book Early
There are plenty of bonuses to booking early. You’re guaranteed to get the flights you want, the accommodation you most want to stay at and, most likely, get it at a cheaper rate. It also gives you more time to get excited about the trip, with less worry about sorting out things quickly before you go. Don’t just think about flights and accom though. Booking a pick up on arrival is super key in avoiding stress. It will mean you stroll off the plane into a ride, so you can kick your feet up sooner.
2. Check In Online
Checking in online saves plenty of time in the long run. It means less hassle standing in queues and a bit of extra breathing space in the airport. The added bonus here in using digital boarding passes means you’re saving resources in paper and giving you one less thing to carry (ahem lose), when you’re in transit.
3. Arrive At The Airport Early
This one is huge. Leave home early, give yourself plenty of time in case the traffic is bad, and breeze through the airport like you’re already on holiday. If you’ve ever been late for a flight, you’ll know the massive stress that goes along with that. Extra time after checking in and going through security can be used shopping, having a relaxing coffee or diving into a good book. Probably our best tip for stress free travel.
4. Pack Light Enough To Carry On
Dragging massive amounts of luggage around can be a stress. Worse is when an airport ‘misplaces’ your bags somewhere between Honolulu and Honduras. Packing light enough to carry is a great way to ensure stress-free travel. Having your bags with you also offsets any risk of theft. Most international flights let you take on a 45 litre backpack, which fits a surprising amount. Make a packing list before you go, narrow things down, take only what you need. For extra tips on how to pack for a long-haul flight, you might also like this post.
5. Pack Some Snacks
Not knowing where your next meal is coming from can be a major cause of stress. Throw some hangry kids into the mix and it’s a recipe for travel tremors. Keep everyone happy with a few select snacks stashed in your bag. Crisps are great, nuts are even better. Water is a must as well. If you don’t need it on the trip, worst case you’ve got some extra provisions for chilling in your hotel or sipping by the pool.
6. Call Your Bank Before You Go
A lot of people forget this one. Often though, if a bank sees overseas transactions on your card, it can trigger an automatic hold on credit. Throw in the fact they might not be able to reach you on your normal number and it’s a recipe for not being able to access your funds when you need them most. A simple phone call ensures your cards will work at your destination. These days a lot of banks even have options in their apps to give them a heads up.
7. Make A Chill Out Playlist
Music soothes the savage beast. It also decompresses a wound-up traveler. Put together a Spotify playlist of your top relaxing songs, or just use this one. Another idea is to take a relaxing read with you. The more tools you have to help you unwind, the better a holiday it’s going to be anyway.
8. Know Your Destination
A lot of travel stress simply comes from being in a new place. Offset that uncertainty and maximise the excitement by researching the place you’re heading to. You’ll know what to expect, pick up a few hints on the best places to check out, and probably get a heads up on how to avoid any common pitfalls in the area. Even doing a Google Maps street view walk is helpful. That way you know where you’re going and look like a confident local even though it’s your first time there.
9. Organise a Local SIM CARD
Another big tip. Being able to communicate with your friends, call your hotel, or get in touch with some transport is a massive help while away. If it’s expensive for your normal provider to hook you up with travel data and international calls, then a local SIM is a great option. In Asia especially there are amazing deals. Either way, organize the ability to use your phone while traveling and things will be much more stress free wherever you are.
10. Take Some Security With You
Having portable security for your valuables is another great way to ease stress during travel. While the term is technically ‘anti-theft backpacks’, they really should be called stress-free backpacks. The whole idea is to reduce the need to worry about your gear and let you focus on the fun parts of travel. You can even take a portable safe (like the one above) if you’re staying in an AirBnB or hostel.
To check out a range of Pacsafe’s best anti-theft bags for travel, head here.