Going away for the holidays? Whether you’re taking a trip to see relatives, going on a road trip with your family, or flying solo for some much-needed decompression, you’re not going to have a restorative trip if you create enough vacation stress to override the relaxation factor. Vacation should be just that – a vacation. Here’s how to ensure you don’t get bogged down by travel anxiety.

If planning isn’t your strong suit, think all-inclusive

For some, an all-inclusive trip like one booked at a full-service resort or a cruise is simply too limiting. For others, it’s a way to take a lot of stress out of travel. If you’re not exactly the best planner or planning a whole trip gives you anxiety, let someone else do it for you. With all-inclusive trips, you don’t have to worry about the in-trip destinations, activities, food, or drinks. Just sit back and relax. Check out Oyster’s best-of list as a jumping-off point for all-inclusive beach trips to escape the winter blues.

Research and early booking is your best friend

Nothing increases travel stress like trying to do things on the fly – especially if you’re vacationing in a city or country that you’re quite unfamiliar with. The more you can have planned out ahead of time, the better. Book your flights and accommodations early (a good way to get them at cheaper rates, too!). Do your research on the place you’re visiting. How will you get around? Do you need to buy a train or bus pass beforehand? Switch your currency ahead of time if the rates are solid. Anything you can do to reduce your load of responsibilities during the actual trip will help you stay stress-free.

Don’t overbook yourself

On the flip side of that, there’s the stress of being too rigid – too planned out and overbooked. A vacation shouldn’t be too much work. You shouldn’t try to cram three different vacations into a week, for instance. If all of your “vacation” time ends up being travel time, you’re going to be stressed out. Find a good balance. In the end, those unplanned days often wind up being the most fun. And according to The Cut, your vacation can feel like a longer one if you don’t over-plan it.

Rethink your car insurance

If you’re planning a road trip, make sure you’re completely covered in case of an accident. Costs will vary depending on where you live (urban areas are costlier), your age (you’ll likely pay more if you’re under 25), and other factors. However, having full coverage means you’ll be taken care of if your car is damaged from a collision or weather-related event. If you have a good driving record, your chances of finding more affordable car insurance increase. Do some research online and compare quotes from top insurers in your area to get the best rates.

Make sure you’re not worried about things at home

A top cause of travel stress for many people when traveling is worrying about the state of affairs at home – more specifically the safety of their home and belongings. It’s easy for your mind to go to the darkest places when you’re hundreds of miles away, even if the chances you’ll be the victim of burglary are small.

But if you want to set your mind at ease, there are some simple things you can do. First, you can secure all the portals in your home. That means locking all doors and windows, and you may want to update them with reinforced glass. Remember to lock your garage or shed. Tell your neighbors that you’re traveling – they can be on the lookout for suspicious activity. And have a friend or relative come over now and then and report back to you. Hearing every couple of days that your home is okay can go a long way toward reducing stress.

Getting out of town for the holidays is a great way to beat the stress of the season and give yourself a boost leading into the new year, but it’s all for naught if you give yourself more stress with the vacation then you would have simply stayed home. Plan ahead (but don’t over plan), make sure you’re properly insured, secure your home, and look for the right type of vacation for you. Don’t go on someone else’s idea of a relaxing trip – know yourself.

Tip: Ask a hotelier how they plan their vacation

We are in this together!

I need to let you all know that we are in on this together.  If you need to vent, talk, cry, or just have some to talk with then I am here listening. Since I am working part-time at the local Kroger, I will to the best of my ability to work it out around my schedule.

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About Are Morch

Hi, I am Are Morch. Your Digital Transformation Coach helping hotels create unique and unexpected experiences by freeing up resources to focus on new ideas through value innovation and a growth mindset.

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