10 HILARIOUSLY TRUE THOUGHTS TRAVELERS HAVE BEFORE A TRIP - AND HOW THEY CAN HELP!
No matter where in the world we are all flying off to, chances are many of us are having the same thoughts. How could we not? We all have check-lists we double check... sometimes triple check. We all have airports to deal with. We all have travel details to figure out.
Plus, we are all awesome. So how could we not think alike? *wink*
And whether your thoughts range from simple to neurotic, they can in fact help make life simpler for you... No really. Go with me on this one.
Last Day at Work: “That’s It. I’ve Done All I Can To Prepare You For My Absence… Soooo… BYEEEE!”
Let’s face it, there’s nothing like walking out of work on the last day before vacation. It brings back memories of the last day of school before summer break. The joy… the glee… the freedom!
And you know what? There is absolutely nothing wrong with feeling that way. In fact you earned it. So do yourself a favor and leave work at work!
That means no checking work email. No answering work calls. Nothing to do with work!
There’s such a growing epidemic of people too afraid of taking time off because they fear it will look bad to their bosses. Or things are so busy, they say they’ll go later – but never do. Or they wait for the “perfect time” which will absolutely never exist. There’s so much unused Paid Time Off out there, it’s sad.
So just GO! Stop feeling guilty.
For most of us, work is what you do, it’s not who you are. Go embrace the time you get to spend doing what you want and what you love!
No one will blame you for skipping joyfully out of the office. In fact, you should totally do it.
Last Minute Packing: “How Am I Ever Going To Survive Without Those Three Pairs Of Jeans I Never Wear?” *Into The Suitcase They Go*
Ladies, can I get an Amen on that one?
I think the need to have options when it comes to packing is built into our DNA. It’s just something that comes naturally. (Can I get another Amen?)
But it doesn’t have to take over our suitcases if we don’t let it.
I mean, think about it… are you really going to wear everything you’ve decided to take with you? Do you actually wear those clothes at home? If you don’t, what makes you think you’re going to wear it on vacation? Do you need all of those shoes?
When it’s time to pack, think smartly. Choose staple pieces. Depending on how long the trip is, I like to bring two or three pairs of pants, several tops that I can layer to make different looks, and two pairs of shoes that will go with those outfits. That’s it. Bing, bang, boom – done.
That especially rings true if you’re trying to avoid checked bags and going carry-on only!! That struggle is definitely real.
Take the basics. Stop making it so hard. You don’t want to look all flashy when you’re traveling anyway! You may attract the wrong kind of attention. And no one wants that.
Arriving At The Airport: “OMG… what if they lost my reservation? What if I booked it wrong? I’m stranded before I even left!”
Yes, my name is Jennifer and I’m an overthinking worrier.
But haven’t we all had a secret fear of our plans just vanishing? (Computers can be assholes, you know!) Or worried something will go haywire with our reservations?
If this is something that lingers in the back of your mind, simply start confirming reservations two or three weeks in advance of your arrival. And carry a printed copy of your reservations with you in case the worst should happen.
I keep what I call my “Nerd Folder” when I travel. It has copies of all reservations, printed tickets, maps I may need, and anything else. And it’s all filed in chronological order.
Ok, so I’m a nerdy overthinking worrier. But at least I’m prepared.
Going Through Security: *Walking Past Everyone Waiting In The Regular Line While You Walk Through TSA Pre-Check* “See ya on the flip-side, peasants.”
It may be dumb, but it does feel good to be granted access to the exclusive line. And not only that, it’s convenient! Not having to take off your jacket, shoes, leave everything in your carry-on, and walk through a regular metal-detector? Yes, please!
If you don’t have TSA Pre-check, it’s definitely something worth looking into, even if you only fly once or twice a year.
And Global Entry? I love that as well. It’s like a Fast-Pass line straight past customs when entering the U.S. (Bonus: TSA Pre-check comes with your Global Entry)
And yes, there may be instances when the TSA Pre-check line will not be as quick as you hoped. I hear people bitch about it quite a bit on flyer forums. But you know what? It’s a government-run program that is there to help keep us all safe…
Take that for what it is. I still love my Pre-check status.
Wasting time gate-side: “$10 for a candy bar?! … Well, that seems reasonable.”
When airports have ya behind security and they know it, prices can seem like a free-for-all. Aren’t they the worst?? Nothing dulls the taste of chocolate than feeling like you’ve been ripped off.
That’s why I always say to bring your own snacks! All else fails I go to McDonald’s if I’m starving marvin and avoid the gift shops, but still. I always have a supply of snacks in my carry-on. It saves so much money.
At The Gate: *Looking around at everyone waiting with you* “So are these the people I’m going to crash and die with today?”
Ok, so maybe this one is a little morbid of me, but I actually do think this each and every time I travel!
And sorry, I have no advice about this. Only that I know I’m not the only one who has this fear. Many of us do! It's ok to have fears, it's a part of life. But it's all in how we deal with them that matters. I don’t let it stop me from doing the things I love.
I’m too stubborn for that jazz. My ass is getting on that plane.
Boarding The Plane: *Walks with the priority boarding group past the waiting masses* “Again… later, peasants!”
Just like TSA Pre-check, it’s good times to be in the exclusive line.
My travel credit cards not only give me the points to book airfare and hotels for free, but I get perks to go along with them! Those come in the form of travel credits, airport lounge access, priority boarding, free checked bag, travel insurance, and so much more.
I cannot sing the praises of travel credit cards enough!!
But for those who can’t get a card with perks right now, never fear. You can either pay a bit extra to get priority boarding or simply bring a carry-on you can store under the seat in front of you. No need to fight for overhead space!
That might relieve some stress if you’re stuck in Boarding Group 6. (There’s no shame)
On The Plane: *Quadruple checks seating assignment* “I can’t get this wrong. I can’t get this wrong. I can’t get this wrong…”
Again, I have no advice for this one. I just worry about the embarrassment of being asked to move once someone notices I obviously don’t know how to read my ticket or the seat signage correctly.
To all you neurotic thinkers out there – unite!
RELATED POST: 5 Reasons Every Girl Should Travel Solo At Least Once
During Flight: “If this dude sitting next to me tries to start up a conversation, I’m going to seriously jump out of this plane and walk the rest of the way.”
So I’m an introvert and am repelled by the thought of small talk with strangers. I’m not on a plane to make friends, I’m there to get somewhere. Is that a little mean? I guess that depends on who you are.
When I’m traveling by myself, my earbuds are in at all times, whether I’m listening to anything or not. And I usually have a book open in my hands.
Does that deter everyone? Not completely. There are those who are small talk intent.
So when all else fails, act like you’re sleeping (the equivalent to playing dead).
(And if any of you know of over the head headphones that don’t leave a big dent in your hair, message me or comment on what they are!! I would love to have some.)
Arriving at Destination: “Yay! I’m finally here!! … Shit, I’m here. Now, How Do I Get Out Of Here?”
Yay! Let the fun begin! Once you’re out of the airport, mind you.
It’s always best to know ahead of time how you’re getting to your accommodations from the airport. And not only that, know any important details along the way.
For example, in a couple weeks I’m heading to Munich, Germany. I will be taking the S1 or S8 U-Bahn train into the city center. Since I obviously have never been there before, I went onto YouTube and watched a few video about how to get to Munich’s center by train. They gave lots of details I never would have know before. Like, did you know you have to validate your train ticket BEFORE you get on the train? There’s kiosks set up in a couple different places to do this very thing.
I have never been on a train before that required me to do this, so the information was incredibly helpful.
Which goes to show, know how you are getting from Point A to Point B and know how to do it properly. You will save yourself time and likely some embarrassment…
Or save yourself from being yelled at in German because you’re doing something wrong. How terrifying would that be??
p.s. what about you? What kind of thoughts roll around in your head before you travel?