When traveling, there is always some stress associated with the unknown factors over which you have no control. Traffic on the way to the airport, flight delays or cancellations, airport parking, security hassles, and long lines at the ticket counter all possess the ability to raise blood pressure. While there are so many aspects in traveling that you cannot control, there are also many aspects that can be personally managed to reduce the stress involved. For an experienced traveler who knows what obstacles to expect, the pitfalls that induce stress can be minimized.
Before ever leaving home, prepare for the travel trip. This means pack well ahead of time, and double check that you have everything you will require on the trip. A good tip here is to take your time and put some thought into packing, because when rushing you will most certainly forget something important. Arrange your transportation to and from the airport, if flying, days ahead of time and have a backup plan just in case. Make certain that finances, tickets, and personal medications are all in order, and are in a designated location at home. Nothing is more stressful when you travel that to run around at the last minute looking for your travelers checks or identification.
Attempt, an I reiterate, attempt to resolve family and personal issues before you leave home. Personal problems with a spouse, children or extended family members can become a really stressful issue when traveling, mostly because they can’t be resolved long distance. The stress of knowing a loved one is having difficulty and you are leaving makes you feel like a heel – that you are abandoning someone when they need your help the most. While this is not always possible to leave home free and clear, it is helpful in reducing travel stress to leave home at home.
The most important measure in preventing stress while traveling is to know what is going on, and how things work in an area that you may not be familiar with. Don’t be afraid to ask questions if some aspect of travel is confusing to you. Also don’t be concerned with asking too many questions of employees of airlines or hotels – they are in the customer service industry, dispersing information is part of their job. One of the best ways to receive information is to talk with experienced travelers on your journey. Many times they will be more than happy to share their specific knowledge with you, and the lessons learned from their mistakes will save you a ton of stress and grief.