Going on holiday can be stressful. From planning your itinerary, to travelling thousands of miles and fitting everything you need in your suitcase, there are many things you've got to consider, which amounts to a whole lot of planning ahead.
Combat anything that comes your way and have a stress free holiday
So it's no surprise that many travellers struggle to de-stress and switch into holiday mode during the first day of their vacation.
According to Booking.com, over a third (36%) of globetrotters worry about things going wrong on the first day of their trip, while 14% said they don't stop worrying until they've had a sleep.
To help you clock out and make the most of your down-time this summer, check out our top tips for planning ahead and taking the stress out of heading off on your vacation.
don't leave everything until the airport
Things like booking your travel insurance as soon as you have booked your holiday, or changing up your money before you get to the airport mean there's one less thing to think about on the day of travel.
Make sure you keep all your documents in one place with a passport holder so you're not scrambling around with sheets of paper at the check in desk. Or, to avoid any unexpected and extra costs, weigh your luggage before you head off with these luggage scales.
get all the apps
Apps and websites can make exploring a new country much more manageable, be it a travel tips site, language translator, money converter or a health app. Smartertravel's ultimate downloadable packing checklist is a great starting point for when you're drafting up your own list, and will make sure you don't forget must-haves like adaptors and toothbrushes.
Duolingo is great for brushing up on the local language before you fly, then use App in the Air before and during your flight to check accurate departure times and monitor how far you are from your destination once you're off ground using the digital map. Once you touch down, Citymapper offers a brilliant, interactive map of most cities around the world, helping you get from A to B whether you're on foot, in a car or using public transport; much speedier than pulling out a gigantic paper map - and much more discreet, too!
make sure to put these in your suitcase
Throw these handy extras in your case to save space and keep your stress levels to a minimum:
An empty pillowcase for dirty laundry
A lightweight sports towel, just in case...
Inflatable travel pillow, which means you can sleep on your flight or in the car, but don't have to deal with a bulky pillow sticking out your bag!
An old glasses case to store earbuds and cords
You could also invest in a bright and colourful luggage strap which will help you identify your case.
be savvy with your suitcase
Lightweight fabric suitcases are great as they use up less weight from your baggage allowance and have a bit of 'give' so you can fit more in. It's also advisable to check on your airline's website for their specific hand baggage dimensions - some are smaller than others and you don't want to be caught out.
Lay everything out before you start and tick it off your list. Pack awkward items first, with heavier items closer to the wheels, so you can see where the space is. If you're running out of room in your case, try rolling up your folded clothes, and make use of the space in your shoes by filling them with underwear and toiletries.
the AIRPORT QUEUE hack
No one likes waiting in queues, but these are part and parcel of travelling.
The majority of travellers are right-handed so head to the furthest left counter from the entrance. Fewer people choose that line as people gravitate to right-hand counters to match their dominant writing hand. Soon you’ll be the first to make it through to baggage claim securing a handy front row spot.
Double check your destination is ready for you
Booking through Airbnb or similar holiday letting sites is growing in popularity, and while you can get amazing deals and beautiful properties, it's always best to check off a few things before you leave.
If you have booked far in advance, make contact with the host to ensure they are expecting you. Unlike hotels, check in times vary depending on people's schedules so it's worth checking how flexible they can be in advance in case you're delayed, or early. Also make sure they have given you accurate directions that you can plot on a paper map, especially if your phone runs out of battery.
And finally, and most importantly, how will you get the keys?