Stop me if you’ve been here before: you arrive at the airport late with bags that are questionably heavy and, now that you think about it, you’re not 100% sure you brought your laptop charger. No matter how good your yoga breathing or how many meditation apps you download, travel can get stressful. And it can go from zero to 60 faster than it takes to spot a busy TSA line during a holiday weekend. I’ll stop because I’m upping your anxiety with every word I type, aren’t I?
When I danced ballet seriously, I would always get stage fright. Not debilitating stage fright but just enough to remind me of my limits. As I swapped out my pointe shoes for passport stamps, I also swapped out stage fright for travel fright. Meaning almost anytime I headed out on a new trip, I’d be a bit anxious. Tell me I’m not alone!?!?
After clocking over 150,000 miles on the road for each of the past three years, I’ve overcome my travel fright with the help of a little planning, a few splurges, and a go-to stress reliever. True, a lot of these tips are pretty straightforward but the key is to actually implement them.
Here are six travel tips to help make your next airport trips less stressful:
As a former over packer, I know how tempting it can be to take your whole life along for the ride. But packing too much leads to extra fees, extra stress, and literal pain because you’re carting so much stuff around! A few key packing tips can change that like have a packing list and sticking to it or starting to pack a few days out and editing until you have only what you need. Oh, and always bring a change of clothes in your carry-on so you won’t be phased in the unfortunate event your luggage is lost.
Eat (And Drink) Well
Being at 30,000 feet for any length of time is stressful enough on your body but eating salty airplane food and drinking alcohol only makes things worse. Thankfully a few long-haul flight tips can really make all the difference. Number one being to hydrate like it's my job. I also pack healthy make-ahead meals and snacks and the result is that I’m less worn out, less bloated, and just feel better when I land.
I know, you’re all, sure, I’d love to arrive early but that’s not real life. And to that I say being on time is part of adulting so make it happen guys! I aim to arrive at least 2 hours (but ideally 2 1/2 hours) before departure time to avoid feeling rushed. Sure, it sucks when the alarm rings at a pre-dawn hour, but having time at the airport to chill and grab a morning coffee, and check a few emails in the airline lounge makes it way less stressful.
Skip The Lines
Speaking of having time at the airport, I cannot emphasize enough how having TSA Pre-Check is all-essential. I mean, just the fact it allows you to skip the long lines and not have to remove your coat, shoes, or laptop when going through security makes it more than worth it. And if you also apply for Global Entry, getting through Customs and Border Control takes just minutes!
Have A Natural Remedy
No matter how zen you are, travel can still get seriously stressful and that’s when I turn to a natural remedy. Rescue has a whole line of Rescue products that help with stress and they’re more than 80 year track record means they know what they’re doing. I’m partial to the quick-working Rescue pastilles and lozenges and make sure to pack them for every flight. You can check what retailers around you carry their products here. They even have an enjoyable, non-medicinal flavors like lemon and orange-elderflower and a chic old-fashioned look to the packaging!
Budget Small Splurges
Finally I’ve learned that budgeting for the right kind of splurges makes a huge difference. Have a layover longer than two hours? Get that lounge pass, take a shower, and a nap. Or head to the airport spa and get an impromptu mani or quick massage.
Just a few changes make the airport way more manageable and, dare I say, enjoyable! How about you? How do you overcome the stresses of travel?
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