Vacations should take the stress out of your normal life and give you memories to cherish. But this exciting experience often starts with the stress of getting to the airport, the fear of not booking an airport limousine, waiting in line and hurrying for your flight. Many people have difficulty managing their time or organizing travel plans and end up anxious at their trip’s beginning. This gives a bad start to an otherwise enjoyable journey.
Don’t want this to happen to you? Here are the top strategies to help you avoid airport stress and make the most of your travel experience.
15 Remarkable Ways to Avoid Stress at the Airport
The pressure of reaching the airport on time, making your way through crowds and security, and the frustration of flight delays all contribute to stress. As a result, your vacation can start on a sour note.
To avoid airport stress, implement these practical ideas.
1) Set Out Your Luggage the Night Before
Preparation is key to stress-free travel. Pack everything the night before except toiletries and clothing you may need in the morning. This will help you avoid last-minute packing and stay organized.
2) Prepare Before You Leave Home
From locking the backdoor to setting up your security system, many things need to be taken care of when leaving your house unoccupied for more than a few days. Make sure your house is secured and ask a trusted neighbor to bring in your trash cans.
3) Double-Check Important Documents
We’ve all heard horror stories of people forgetting their passport or showing up at the wrong airport. If you don’t want your vacation to turn into a nightmare, double-check your travel documents and be sure to keep your passport and flight info with you. And don’t go to the wrong airport!
4) Know What’s Not Allowed in Your Luggage
Make sure you don’t pack items that aren’t allowed. Items prohibited from your hand luggage include all liquids over 100 ml. Not being aware of security measures can lead to having your carry-on luggage examined which holds up everyone, resulting in delays and, yes, stress.
5) Arrive at the Airport 2-3 Hours Early
Running late to the airport is the ultimate recipe for stress. Plus, it can lead to exasperating events like long lines at security, last-minute boarding announcements and staring passengers. That’s why arriving at the airport two to three hours before your departure time is best. To ensure you get timely transportation, hire an airport limousine service well ahead of time.
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6) Weigh Everything Beforehand
Throwing your belongings out of your suitcase at check-in or paying for unnecessary luggage is inconvenient to say the least. To avoid this hassle, weigh your luggage before you leave. This not only saves you from watching the scale but helps you leave behind items you don’t need.
7) Avoid Drinking on Travel Day
It’s tempting to down a few beers or glasses of wine before you board. But alcohol can compound the effects of stress which is why it’s advisable to avoid drinking on your day of travel.
8) Have a Relaxing Meal and Stay Hydrated
It’s hard to be stress-free when you’re hungry. The best way to keep bad moods at bay is to have a delicious, relaxing meal. If you have time, lift your spirit with some of your favourite snacks. And drink as much water as you can, especially during long flights, as dehydration leads to higher levels of cortisol, the stress hormone.
Don’t know where to find good airport food? Here’s a list of eight great places to eat at Toronto Pearson Airport.
9) Dress Comfortably
Wearing comfortable clothes when travelling is a pro tip that most globetrotters swear by. Not only do you avoid embarrassing wardrobe malfunctions at the airport but you ensure that you don’t have to go through security twice because of metal on your dress. Avoid heels, tight skirts, formal suits (unless you’re travelling in business) or pants that wrinkle easily. Instead, choose outfits made of breathable fabrics like cotton and linen. Also, wear loose clothes like sweatpants, T-shirts and shorts so you’re not confined. Being comfortable keeps you calm and stress-free.
10) Use the Airport Lounge
Once you’ve passed security and had a good meal, relax in the airport lounge. Keep an eye on the departure board but try to chill. Having a comfortable environment sets the right mood to travel, so enjoy the airport experience and start of your vacation.
11) Bring Headphones
Listening to music relaxes mind and body. Its soothing powers lower blood pressure and decrease stress. So, bring the music you love, carry a set of comfortable noise-cancelling headphones and say goodbye to the babbles of other passengers.
With headphones you can also make use of airport Wi-Fi to watch your favourite web series or movies without disturbing others or being disturbed.
12) Give Yourself Time to Relax
Checking in online means you don’t have to reach the airport three hours ahead of your flight. But it’s important to be there in plenty of time to avoid stress, especially if you’re a nervous flyer. Doing so let’s you relax before you fly and become accustomed to the environment.
13) Focus on Your Destination
Another strategy to get over travel stress and stay motivated is to focus on the exciting experiences you’ll have on your trip. Don’t let lineups and crowds distract you from the fact that you’re jetting off to a beautiful place. Staying focused on your destination not only relieves airport stress but keeps you positive.
14) Be Polite and Friendly
From your airport limo chauffeur to the gate agents, being polite and kind to others can significantly impact your mood and anxiety level. Smiling and being nice increases feelings of positive mental health and boosts mood, even on extremely stressful days.
15) Make Your Luggage Stand Out
Airport stresses don’t end when your flight takes off. You have a whole other airport to deal with upon landing. When you land at a packed airport like Charles de Gaulle or JFK, you may notice that about 70% to 80% of luggage is black and remarkably similar in size and shape. And pulling a dozen similar pieces of luggage off a baggage carousel to check which one is yours is distressing. Your stress level may reach new heights if someone mistakenly grabs one of your bags. To avoid that situation, make sure your luggage stands out from the crowd. Here’s how to do it.
- Invest in bold, brightly-coloured carry-on spinners that are easy to spot.
- Personalize your bags with a luggage belt.
- Use eye-catching luggage tags with your name, address and phone number in case your bags get lost.
- Stitch a patch on your backpack to make it more recognizable.
Maybe you hate airports because you’ve had experiences that trigger anxiety. But following these strategies can make a big difference and lower or even eliminate airport stress. Practice tips like preparing your luggage for security, wearing comfortable clothes, hiring an airport limousine service and staying hydrated. Then, let us know how it went. If you think we missed something, feel free to get in touch and share your thoughts. Contact us at 1-800-263-5466 or firstname.lastname@example.org.