Holidays are shown in the media to be a magical and wonderful time. In real life, however, they can be some of the most stressful weeks of our lives. Whether you are flying across the country and juggling a dozen fighting family members, going a few cities over to visit friends, or you’re trying to brave the holidays on your own for the first time, it can be a lot to handle. Regardless of your holiday plans, having a solid plan can at least prevent some holiday disasters.
1. Book Your Flights Early
When you’re planning to travel for the holidays, it’s easy to forget that it’s the worst time of year to travel because everyone else is also traveling at the same time. However, you may be able to secure your affordable flight if you don’t wait until the last minute. Generally, the cheapest time to buy a flight is a month and a half ahead of time and the holidays are no exception. However, committing to holiday plans that early can be a challenging commitment. Which leads us to the second point…
2. Pay For Travel Insurance
It’s not usually that expensive, but around the holidays it can be easy to cut any extra charges to save up for gifts. However, travel insurance isn’t something you should skip, especially around this time of year. So many things can happen; less than desirable weather, sickness, last minute changes, and more. With travel insurance, you can breathe easier knowing you are covered for most unforeseen events.
3. Pack Light (But Not Too Light)
Whether you’re an over-packer or an under-packer, odds are you could make your packing plan more efficient. Layers are your best friend for travel. Regardless of how cold you think it’s going to be, that warm 60-degree day could come out of nowhere. Pack things that are interchangeable as formal and casual. If you pack a lot of “one-time” outfits, your suitcase will be stuffed, and who wants to pay for an oversized bag?
4. Learn to Say No
If your family (or friends) are stressing you out, don’t let them push you beyond your limits. Go into the holidays with healthy boundaries and plans to keep them. If things get out of hand, handle what you can and let the rest go. Don’t let the stress of family time ruin your holiday season.
5. Laugh It Off
At the end of the day, it’s the holidays. Things are going to go wrong. Things are going to get crazy. Especially if you have a backup plan, you will be able to let things slide off your back. Make the most of the holiday mishaps. If the food doesn’t turn out right, you can change up the plans. If your flights are cancelled for weather reasons, at least you got travel insurance, right?
At the end of the day, holidays can be a stressful time. Hopefully, these steps can help you make them a little bit less stressful than usual.