A vacation is supposed to be your time to unwind, but the stress of connecting flights, cramped transportation, and unfamiliar spaces can have your stomach in knots. The stress makes a lot of people say they hate travel. They’d rather stay home when they have a week off than
But you can find convenient ways to strain the stressful things out of your travel diet while adding in a healthy dose of convenience. These tips will give you a few ideas to lower your blood pressure the next time you step out of your hometown.
Buy Vacation Packages
You probably thought vacation packages were a way to tack on tour guide and provider fees and sucker you out of more money. But no! Many travelers save money by purchasing a travel package with airfare, tours, and accommodations—maybe hundreds of dollars more.
Next time you’re on a travel site like Priceline or Travelocity, check for packaged deals. These packages won’t bend your budget, and that can mean less stress for you as you painstakingly plan your vacation.
Choose Calming Activities
Some travelers assume they have to be testing the limits when they vacation. They’ll book ziplines, safaris, and excursions off the beaten path. But to other people, this sounds like a heap of anxiety-inducing outings.
You don’t have to do something wild on vacation. Instead, you can make the focus of your trip relaxation and choose activities that will help you de-stress, such as painting or wine tasting.
We know you might want to experience something new, but booking too many new experiences can have you feeling overwhelmed, and dreading your trip instead of eagerly anticipating it.
Know Your Plane Inside and Out
Do you know your airline’s baggage policies? Amenities? Seating assignments? Do your homework so you aren’t stalled for hours in the airport because you packed the wrong thing into your carry-on bag.
An app like SeatGuru could help you find the most comfortable way to fly. SeatGuru helps you compare plane types and seating arrangements and provides info on special circumstances such as flying as an unaccompanied minor.
Rent Instead of Rideshare
Ridesharing is the contemporary transportation of choice because it’s cheap and on-demand. Lots of travelers will use an Uber or Lyft to get around their vacation destination, or even public transportation if they think they can handle the bus routes, ticket-buying, a transit culture of their destination.
But for many people, these methods can be stress-inducing. “Will the Uber driver be dangerous? What if I buy the wrong kind of ticket? How will I fit in such a cramped bus?” These are the kinds of questions travelers might battle.
While rental cars come at an added cost, they also come with added convenience. You can choose when and where you go without hailing a ride and waiting for it to arrive. If you want to travel long distances to an attraction, it can be cheaper and quicker to hop in your rental and go.
Don’t write off rentals because of complaining customers. Know potential rental car charges and fees and how to avoid them, and you’ll enjoy your ride.
Travel in a Group
If you’re going somewhere new, you could be worried about being pickpocketed, mugged, or worse. Instead of always keeping your eyes on your surroundings, hands clutching your personal belongings, try traveling in a tour group.
There’s safety in numbers, and booking a guide before you embark on your trip will give you peace of mind if you’re able to read reviews and know the guide is legitimate. This could also mean housing in the same accommodations as your group if it’s a multi-day tour, which can keep you feeling safe even while you sleep.
Traveling is about experiencing something new, which can be inherently scary. But nothing ventured, nothing gained. To know how to travel with less stress, you have to know yourself and know your pressure points. Find out what doesn’t bother you and what your pet peeves are, then find ways to avoid the bad on your next trip.