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How to Travel with Less Stress

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How to Travel with Less Stress

Are you planning to travel this spring or summer? Would you like to travel with less stress?

As Covid vaccines reach more and more people, the urge to travel has grown. People are planning trips and making travel plans.  Traveling even under the best of circumstances can be stressful, but there are many new rules in place, and changing requirements, that make it more challenging. Here are some tips to keep the stress at bay.

Know the Rules

Whether you’re traveling from state to state or internationally, there are new rules in place to keep everyone safe. In many cases, you’ll be required to quarantine for 4-14 days.

This time can often be shortened by obtaining a negative test after being in the country or state for a few days. A negative test is required to fly nearly everywhere. Many of the larger airports have testing on-site, however, the long lines as travel picks up may add stress. You can always get a test from a local testing site prior to going to the airport.

Pack Light

Unless you’re going to some place where there are no stores or shops, it can be very stressful to try to pack everything you might possibly need. Pack practical clothing that matches so that you can create different outfits; make sure your carry on isn’t so overloaded that your can’t carry it through the airport.  If you’re checking bags, it’s even more important to travel light.  Airlines charge up to $200 in overweight fees, even if you only go over by a pound. That $200 would buy whatever you’re trying to bring, probably twice.

Plan Ahead but Be Flexible

If you really want to travel with less stress, it’s important to plan ahead.  If you’re planning to go to museums, cultural events, or performances, purchase your tickets ahead of time. While it may change as more people get vaccinated, right now most venues have limited capacity and require you to make an appointment or schedule a specific time to avoid crowds. At the same time, wherever possible, allow yourself flexibility. Travel can be exhausting. An open day in the midst of it where you can relax at your hotel or vacation home and not be running non-stop can be beneficial.

Be Careful What You Bring in Your Carryon

Security is tougher than ever in airports right now. Have your passport, boarding pass, and negative Covid test (or proof of recovery) available for inspection at every checkpoint and randomly. Pack your carry-ons carefully. Liquids need to be stored in clear plastic bags that can be removed easily and quickly. Laptops, tablets and kindles need to be easily accessible so they can be removed. And extra things – cords, speakers, voltage converters, and other electronics that don’t have lithium batters should be in your suitcase – on x-ray machines, these items will almost always slow you down as they’ll trigger a physical inspection of your bag.

The travel season will look very different this year, but it does look as though there will be one. To keep your travel stress free,  be flexible, allow for down time, and practice habits that will keep you safe.

Cris Sgrott

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