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Stress-free Travel Tips


Lifestyle Improvement

Posted On: Oct 11, 2016

Stress-free Travel Tips

Traveling, especially via plane, can be a headache even in the best of times. Crowded airports, flight delays, turbulence, and going through security are things enjoyed by nobody.

But it can be several orders of magnitude worse if you are grieving. If you feel like you could break down at any moment, how can you be expected to endure brusque security agents, witless flight attendants, and crying babies? And yet, due to far-flung funerals, there is often no escape from it when you are bereaved

The good news is, there are things you can do to ameliorate your stress. Here are a few.

Get there early

This is the most important one. In the United States, officials recommend getting to the airport 90 minutes to 2 hours before your flight. Fortunately, even if you don't get there THAT early, it usually takes some sort of problem or a holiday throng for you to jeopardize your chances of catching your flight even an hour out.

But don't risk it! Get there even earlier than the recommended two hour window. That way, delays, problems, and issues are not compounded by the worry that they will cause you to miss your flight. With luck, you then get to settle at your gate well before you have to board, giving you time to center yourself, shop, relax, read, or eat. If you're a natural procrastinator, convince yourself your flight leaves 2 ½ hours before it actually does.

Fly nonstop if possible

Every hassle outlined above is multiplied by the amount of stopovers your must make, plus the additional concern that a flight delay on all but the last leg of your itinerary might force you to miss your flight to your final destination. Rebooking, dealing with the airline, and, worst of all, missing a memorial service or funeral is the very last thing you need to worry about while you're grieving.  The key to low-stress travel is to simplify as much as possible, and it doesn't get much simpler than a direct, nonstop flight to your final destination. If it's possible and affordable, give it strong consideration.

Pack smart

Specifically, you should pack in a way that's smart both logistically and emotionally.

Logistically, pack as little as you can. More is worse in this case. The more you bring, the more you have to lug around, the more you have to pay in baggage fees, the more you the odds increase of the airline misplacing or misrouting something. A lighter load is a less-stress load, and you need to avoid stress as much as you can when you're grieving. Don't compound the stress on your own

Emotionally, pack things that calm you and make you feel better. Your favorite books, indulgent snacks , a thumb drive of your favorite music, TV shows, or movies. These things will potentially help keep your mind off your grief and take your stress levels down. If you like to shop and can afford some retail therapy, there's probably a copy of Sky Mall or an equivalent in the seat pocket in front of you. Go ahead and treat yourself.