The Stress Management Society offer their best five tips to avoid vacation anxiety and enjoy your travels, wherever you may go:
1. Arrive early
Nothing gets travel off to a more stressful start than running late to the airport. However you are getting there, be it by plane, train or bus, make sure you have factored in enough time for any unforeseeable delays.
When booking your flights consider taking a flight around midday rather than early in the morning. This will give you more time to finish any last minute packing and get to the airport. And remember if you are earlier than necessary, there is always lots to do at the airport to keep you busy. It is better to get there early and relax than arrive late and in a rush.
2. Check in online
Avoid queues by checking yourself in to your flight in advance. This will save you lots of valuable time at the airport. It also means if you are delayed for some reason you won’t have to worry about check in closing. Make sure that you send your boarding passes to your smartphone, as this will be an additional time saver and reduce your chances of mislaying them.
3. Be prepared
Make sure you are prepared for all stages of your travel. Do your packing early and write a packing check list to make sure you don't forget anything important.
Ensuring you have only the bare essentials in your hand luggage will save you time at security too. Preparation really is the travellers best friend!
4. Relax and breathe
If you suffer from fear of travelling, take some items on the trip that will help you feel more at home and relaxed. Whether this is a good book to keep you entertained or an eye mask for an overnight flight, it helps to take items that will make you feel more comfortable.
When you are on your flight you can also do some activities to help you relax. The plane might not have a lot of leg room but you can always practice some meditation, mindfulness or breathing exercises to help you unwind.
5. Think ahead to the destination
Don’t leave anything to chance when you get to the other end of your journey. Make sure you have all your paperwork with you including any visas you might need and the address and telephone number of your accommodation.
Research whether you will need any vaccinations or malaria tablets for your destination, and take a first aid kit with some essentials. Items that are easy to come by at home may not be so readily available abroad!
It is also important that you think through how you will get from the airport to the hotel. It helps to have printed journey planners for different types of transport to ensure that all your options are covered. There is nothing worse for your stress levels than arriving in a country after a long journey to find nobody available to ask for help and no internet connection to work out how to get to your hotel.