If you’ve got a trip coming up, then you’ve come to the right place. Preparing for a trip can be one of the most stressful things you do. But below we have some advice for stressed out trip goers that can help things run much smoother and not leave you needing a vacation from your vacation.
Be respectful and patient towards security checkpoints and customs officials. In most cases, these exist for your safety. If not, being upset still won’t help you get through any faster. In fact, making a fuss at the security checkpoint is almost always a ticket to the express lane for the extra search.
When you travel, it’s important to stop for the cheese as well as the big-time monuments. What that means is this: Go to Mt. Rushmore, sure. But first, you need to stop at the Jolly Green Giant Statue in Minnesota and get your picture taken. You need to actually go see the Corn Palace in Mitchell, SD, and Wall Drug. These places are kitschy, and that’s exactly why they’re essential. America is both a place of great beauty and great silliness, and both should be celebrated by the traveler.
Pack your own pillow. If you have trouble sleeping away from home, try bringing your own pillow along. Some people find it difficult to sleep in a bed that isn’t their own. Having a familiar pillow under your head can make a surprisingly huge difference. It could mean the difference between sleepless nights and being well rested for another day full of activities.
When traveling to a country that requires certain vaccinations, be sure and carry the paperwork indicating you’ve had them with you. This comes into play whenever you are attempting to enter or leave a country, and can even be a problem when traveling between cities in the same country. If you don’t have your certificate, authorities may quarantine you until they can verify you are telling the truth.
Make use of social media when traveling and when planning your trip. Many blogs and online forums have first-hand reviews of the locations you’d like to visit, plus you can ask people directly about their experiences. In addition, if you use sites that allow you to update your status, your friends might have good suggestions on what to do next.
If you are planning on flying or riding a long distance with school-age children, consider investing in a small portable DVD player. The least expensive ones can run as low as $75, and the peace of mind it buys you on that nine-hour international flight is more than worth the cost.
Look for “nonstop” rather than just “direct” flights. Nonstop flights, as their name implies, make no stops before arriving at the destination, whereas direct flights may stop at other airports on the way to the final destination. Although you are not changing planes, the stops you make on a direct flight can lead to many unexpected delays.
Hopefully at least some of these tips will be helpful for you on your upcoming vacation. While each tip may not work for every person and every vacation, you should now be armed with some extra knowledge to make things run a lot smoother and help you avoid any problems.