Savvy travelers make the process look seamless, even when things go bump, because they’ve adopted good travel habits. They travel light, easily combat jetlag, and don’t get stressed if something goes awry. Don’t admire them from afar—you too can become a savvy traveler! Adopt these 10 travel habits now, and keep stress low and travel easy.
Keep valuables in carry-on.
If you’re traveling with something you can’t live without, keep it in your carry-on or handbag (or leave it at home). You’ll travel much easier knowing exactly where your item is and it won’t be missing if anything happens to your checked bag.
Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate
Staying hydrated is so important when you travel. The air in the cabin is much dryer, and being dehydrated only makes jetlag worse. Drink plenty of water before your flight and continue to do so throughout the flight. You can bring an empty water bottle through security and fill it up in the terminal (some airports even have water bottle refilling fountains!). So skip the cocktails on the flight, and ask for water instead (you don’t want to be the tipsy traveler after all!).
Bring medications with you (not in your checked bag!)
Just like #1, it is important to keep prescription medications with you—not in your checked bag. If your bag is delayed or goes missing, you don’t want to spend your time at a pharmacy in a foreign country. Be sure to pack a few extra days’ worth of medication and bring your prescription as well.
Travel can be stressful, so don’t make it any harder by racing against the clock. Allow yourself plenty of time to check-in and get through security. Once you’re in, you can relax at your gate (and drink water—see #2) and get in vacation mode.
Take photos of identification
Make photocopies of your passport and take a photo of it on your phone. Leave a copy at home with a loved one, and keep another copy separate from the physical passport. If you lose it or it is stolen, you’ll still be able to prove your citizenship—and get home!
Enjoy the moment
Don’t try to capture every moment of your trip with your camera…experience it yourself. You’ll of course want some photos, but don’t spend the whole trip trying to get the perfect photo (and posting every. single. photo. on social media. It’s okay to disconnect). Savor the flavors, sights, and sounds of the destination and then take a photo.
Make your list at least a week before so you can fill in any wardrobe holes. Bring a few key wardrobe pieces that mix and match, and leave space for souvenirs! Then, pack your suitcase the night before to avoid stress by waiting until the last minute.
Keep a change of clothes in carry on
Bring a change of clothes in your carry-on. If you’re headed somewhere warm, throw in a bathing suit as well. You’ll be so glad you did if your bag is delayed, if someone spills on you, if you have a flight delay, and so on. And don’t forget a pair of warm socks, especially for those long haul flights.
Charge items and bring a small charger
Airports and planes have made a lot of upgrades to have more charging stations, but sometimes you don’t have time to charge all your devices during a layover. Make sure everything is fully charged before your departure, and bring a portable charger. They’re inexpensive, small, and can save the day in a pinch.
Don’t make yourself to be a target of pickpocketers by looking like an obvious tourist. Bring neutrals that you can mix and match (it’ll help you pack light, too!) and layers for different weather. And be sure to respect the customs of the country you’re visiting. Keep your shoulders covered in churches, temples, and mosques.