Going away is always an exciting prospect, especially if you’re going on holiday. However, for some of us, the thought of travelling is an incredibly scary one. Having a fear of travelling isn’t something to feel ashamed about, we all feel it from time to time. However, it can be annoying when it gets in the way of us enjoying ourselves. So how can we put a stop to that pesky travel anxiety? Read on for my six top tips to combat those worries!
Whatever method of transport you’re taking to your destination, planning ahead with things can ease that stress. Here’s just a handful of things you can plan beforehand that will make your journey easier:
- Plan for every eventuality – If you’re travelling with children, this is one to bear in mind! Baggage allowance permitting, pack extra clothing for the kids, and perhaps even for you too if you’re travelling with really young children (just in case of any accidents)! Bring things to keep them entertained, travel sickness pills, snacks, you get the idea.
- Pre-book airport car parking and additional transport – If you’re flying, pre-booking your airport car parking will not only save you a little cash, but it will also make the process of getting to the airport a lot smoother. Booking your airport transfers in advance is also a good idea too, as it will save you worrying about how you’ll get to your final destination. If you’re relying on public transport, book your tickets in advance to save time and stress at the ticket window!
- Plan your routes – If you’re travelling by car to your destination, planning your route ahead of time is a good way to familiarise yourself with road names, exits to take, and where any service stations are. If you’re a nervous driver, you can even plan regular stops to give yourself a well earned break.
If you need a little more help with the travel element, this article has some great tips on making the whole process a little less stressful.
This overlaps a little with the previous point, however organising things like your luggage and travel documents is another way to feel a little more in control.
- Keep your boarding passes, passports and other important documents together, and make sure they’re in a place where you can quickly grab them.
- If you’re flying with hand luggage, keep your liquids in an easy access place, and have them already packed in a clear bag. No one wants to be holding up the security queue rummaging around in their suitcase.
Bring Plenty of Distractions
Packing a few distractions to keep yourself occupied is a great way to ease travel anxiety. This will differ depending on what works best for you, but just a handful of things you could try are:
- Making a playlist of your favourite music
- Having a few episodes of your favourite TV show or your favourite film downloaded on your phone or tablet
- Download a meditation app, such as Headspace
- Bring a few magazines or a novel to read
Look After Your Health
I don’t know about you, but my number one fear of travelling is getting ill. The idea of it happening in a strange environment and not being able to just go home terrifies me. If this is you, there’s plenty of measures you can take to help ease that worry.
- Pack medication for stomach upsets, plasters and antiseptic cream, and any important medications you usually take
- Avoid drinking tap water if you’re travelling abroad – especially in certain countries such as Egypt, Mexico, or India. Ensure you stay hydrated by drinking plenty of bottled water.
- Regularly apply sunscreen if you’re visiting a hot country and take regular breaks from the sun
- Make sure you’ve arranged travel insurance
If you need more advice on how to stay healthy while travelling, take a look at this article which is packed with top tips.
Tell Your Travel Companions
There’s no shame in telling your travel companions that you suffer with travel anxiety. You may even find they do too, and you can help each other through it! You don’t need to make a big thing about it, just a simple mention that you’re feeling rather anxious will go a long way, and you may even find you feel better for telling someone. It could even work in your favour. For example, if you’re the chief driver on a journey, someone may offer to share the burden to give you a break, or if you’re flying they’ll be able to keep you talking to distract you during take off.
Of course if you’re travelling solo this isn’t a very useful solution, however if you really struggle, you could always start up a conversation with the person next to you as a way of distraction! If you’re flying, it’s always worth having a word with a member of the cabin crew, who will be especially used to nervous passengers.
Bring Some Home Comforts
Bringing a little piece of home with us on our travels can be one way to make us feel that little bit more calm. Home comforts don’t necessarily have to be physical items either, it can even be something as simple as sticking to your usual routine. If you have a cup of tea and watch a few things on Netflix before bed, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t do it just because you’re away from home! If having that routine helps make you feel more at home, go for it!