While the world is filled with relaxing travel destinations, getting there can cause you quite a bit of stress. Making preparations, getting on a plane, and dealing with any issues that arise along the way can cause quite a bit of discomfort and insecurity, especially if you are not a seasoned traveler. If you’d like to avoid dealing with stress during the travel process, here are some tips that can help you stay relaxed.

Travel Stress: 5 Tips to Help You Stay Relaxed

1 – Do your research

It’s in the best interest of your air travel company and your host country to make sure you get safely to your destination with as little hassle as possible. Thanks to that, most of the travel horror stories you’ve heard were likely caused by either lack of proper preparation or just plain bad luck. Research and preparation can help you avoid 95% of common travel issues.

If this is your first time traveling out of the country or your first time visiting this specific country, do your due diligence. Check official sources for guidelines on what you should do, and read reports from other travelers to see what kind of issues they have dealt with. Just like planning a day trip to Washington DC from NYC, you should check the requirements needed and the budget to spend there. The fewer surprises you need to handle on the day of the trip, the less stressed you’re going to get.

2 – Get a checklist

The vague feeling that you’re forgetting something can be quite annoying on the day of the trip. It’s even worse if you realize you forgot something important after you’ve checked in your bags. You can minimize both problems by starting a flight-day checklist the day you start planning your trip. That will give you plenty of time to fill in the checklist with everything important, so you can double-check it on the day of the trip to make sure you’re not forgetting anything.

Remember, this isn’t just about leaving nothing behind. It’s also about giving yourself peace of mind. A robust checklist is one of the few ways you can be certain you got everything.

3 – Relax before leaving

Starting the trip relaxed and fresh will help you stay calm during the whole process. So take a day off the day before the trip if you can, try to get a good night’s sleep, and load up on things that help you relax before leaving for the airport. Go for whatever works for you, whether it be relaxing music, meditation, chamomile tea, or even delta-8 THC.

4 – Include tolerances

Traveling is much more stressful when you are working on a tight deadline. Instead, build time tolerances into your itinerary so you’ll have room to adapt if things go wrong. One way to do this is planning the trip so you’ll be at the airport at least two hours before the plane leaves, which allows you to check-in early and deal with any issues that arise with time to spare.

5 – Protect your downtime

Make sure you have the tools available to allow yourself to relax once you do get some downtime on the trip. This means loading games onto your phone and bringing a good novel with you. It also means packing earplugs or a good pair of sound-isolating headphones so you can block out annoying noises when you’re trying to relax.