Enjoying the Journey: How to Make Travel Less Stressful

Travel, even when you’re heading off on dream holiday, is always a stressful period. You’ve got to take care of heavy luggage, strict deadlines, long waits, and bored travel companions. But the good news is that there are effective tips to manage the stress of travelling. In this article, we’ll be going over the most practical ones.

Be Prepared

Even if you’re not a naturally organized person, travel is one of those activities that really benefits from a firm organizational hand at the tiller. The reason for this is that there are lots of moving parts and any one of them failing up can lead to unnecessary stress.

With that in mind, you should make sure that the vital parts of your holiday, like your money, tickets, passports, and deadlines are locked down well before the day of travel. It might seem like boring admin at the time, but getting it done in advance means you can relax a little on the day and start looking forward to that Italian road trip you’ve been dreaming about.

Manage Your Aviophobia

Around 25 percent of air passengers have suffered some form of distress related to air travel. If you’re one of those people, it doesn’t matter that the chances of having an air traffic accident stand at 1 in 11 million, and you’re around 100 times more likely to be injured in a bizarre accident involving horseshoes, you’re still going to feel some worry when getting on the plane.

The trick is to accept and try and manage that uneasiness, rather than avoid it. Use whatever works for you, be that booking a specific seat, listening to calming music, travelling with a supportive partner, or even taking prescription medication. Alcohol is probably the least effective coping mechanism, as common anti-anxiety medications can achieve the same result without the mood swings, loss of faculty, or the hangover on the first day of your holiday.

Learn to Enjoy the Wait

Air travel is a lot like fighting a war, insomuch as it involves a huge amount of waiting around and then sudden bursts of frantic activity. Since most of your time is going to be taken up in waiting, its best to equip yourself for that wait, and achieve peace of mind as a result.

The good news is that most of your entertainment capabilities can be delegated to the one gadget we nearly always have on our person, our mobile phones.

Alongside making sure you’ve got your passport, foreign currency, and you haven’t accidentally left a child Home Alone, make sure you spend some time downloading something you can do in your downtime. This could be a new game, an audiobook, or your favourite music album.

All of those can easily be stored on your phone and will be in easy reach when you need to spend hours sitting in an uncomfortable plastic seat, staring forlornly at the departures board.

Make Sure You’ve Got The Time

Although there’s no chance of your flight leaving early, it’s always a bad idea to cut your timing down to the bare minimum. Giving yourself a little wiggle room when it comes to your travel timings in just good sense and it applies just as much to how you book your travel as it does to when you leave the house on the day.

It might be cheaper to book a flight with a really narrow margin connection, but the chances of you crossing an airport you’ve never visited in less than five minutes, all while dragging your luggage behind you, are fairly slim.

To put it in context, the world’s most commonly used airport for connection flights, Jackson Atlanta International Airport, is 6.8 million square feet in size.

Have Something to Come Home To

A lot of advice on making travel more fun focusses on the journey out. However, coming home can be equally stressful and you won’t have the benefit of enjoying a lovely holiday at the other end.

One of the best ways to round out the holiday is to have a little something waiting for you back at home. It doesn’t have to be anything major, it can be as simple as your favourite take away, a visiting friend, or a little gift, from you to you, that you had delivered while you were away.

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