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  • Writer's pictureBriana Ellis

POV: You booked a trip and need to prepare

Updated: May 20

So, you’re gonna travel—congrats!Now what? Get prepared with help from yours truly.

The checklist will be your best friend as you get closer to your trip.

Panicked about packing?

Giiiiirl packing for an international trip can be a little overwhelming. In addition to all the usual packing questions—How much clothing do I really need? What weather do I need to prepare for? Should I carry on or check my bag?—there are other considerations at play. Do I need power adapters? What do I do about money? How can I fit more stuff into my suitcase so I have fewer bags to lug around the world?

Make a Packing List: Start by creating a packing list that includes all the items you'll need for your trip. Divide your list into categories such as clothing, toiletries, electronics, documents, etc. This will help you stay organized and ensure you don't forget anything important.

  1. Check the Weather: Research the weather at your destination for the duration of your trip. This will help you pack appropriate clothing and accessories. Consider packing versatile items that can be layered for changing weather conditions.

  2. Pack Light: Aim to pack light, especially if you'll be moving around frequently during your trip. Choose clothing items that can be mixed and matched to create multiple outfits. Limit yourself to essentials and avoid overpacking.

  3. Roll Your Clothes: Rolling your clothes instead of folding them can save space in your luggage and help prevent wrinkles. It's also a good idea to use packing cubes or compression bags to further optimize space.

  4. Pack Toiletries Wisely: Toiletries can take up a lot of space in your luggage, so try to minimize what you bring. Opt for travel-sized containers of shampoo, conditioner, and other toiletries, or consider purchasing these items upon arrival to save space.

  5. Don't Forget Travel Documents: Make sure you have all the necessary travel documents such as your passport, visa (if required), travel insurance information, and any tickets or reservations. Keep these documents in a secure, easily accessible place.

  6. Pack Important Items in Your Carry-On: Place essential items such as medication, important documents, a change of clothes, and valuables in your carry-on bag. This way, you'll have access to them during the flight and in case your checked luggage gets lost or delayed.

  7. Consider Cultural Norms: Research the cultural norms and dress codes of your destination to ensure you pack appropriate clothing. This is especially important if you're visiting countries with conservative dress codes or specific customs.

  8. Pack for Comfort: Don't forget to pack items that will make your journey more comfortable, such as a travel pillow, eye mask, earplugs, and entertainment (books, music, etc.).

  9. Leave Room for Souvenirs: Leave some extra space in your luggage for souvenirs and gifts you may want to bring back from your trip. You can also consider packing a collapsible bag or duffel for this purpose.

Travel Jitters: Navigating Anxiety Before, During, and after Your Trip

It's completely normal to experience travel jitters or anxiety before, during, and even after a trip. Here are some strategies to help you navigate anxiety at each stage of your journey:

Before Your Trip:

  1. Plan and Prepare: Research your destination, make an itinerary, and familiarize yourself with travel logistics. Feeling prepared can help alleviate anxiety about the unknown.

  2. Pack Early: Start packing well in advance of your trip to avoid last-minute stress. Make a packing list and check items off as you go to ensure you don't forget anything important.

  3. Stay Organized: Keep all travel documents, passports, tickets, and itineraries in one easily accessible place. Knowing you have everything you need can reduce pre-travel anxiety.

  4. Practice Relaxation Techniques: Engage in activities that promote relaxation, such as meditation, deep breathing exercises, or yoga. These techniques can help calm your mind and ease pre-trip nerves.

  5. Focus on the Positive: Remind yourself of the exciting experiences and opportunities awaiting you on your trip. Visualize yourself enjoying your destination and focus on the positives rather than the uncertainties.

During Your Trip:

  1. Take Things Slow: Pace yourself and avoid overloading your schedule. Allow time for rest and relaxation to prevent feeling overwhelmed.

  2. Stay Flexible: Understand that things may not always go according to plan, and that's okay. Embrace spontaneity and be open to unexpected experiences.

  3. Practice Mindfulness: Stay present in the moment and focus on enjoying your surroundings. Mindfulness techniques can help alleviate worries about the future or past.

  4. Stay Connected: Keep in touch with loved ones back home if it helps you feel more grounded. Knowing you have a support system can provide comfort during your travels.

  5. Seek Support if Needed: Don't hesitate to reach out to travel companions, tour guides, or hotel staff if you're feeling overwhelmed or anxious. Sometimes, talking to someone can help put things into perspective.

After Your Trip:

  1. Give Yourself Time to Readjust: It's normal to feel a bit disoriented or even sad after returning from a trip. Give yourself time to readjust to your regular routine and reflect on your experiences.

  2. Share Your Experiences: Talk about your trip with friends and family, or journal about your adventures. Sharing your experiences can help process your emotions and keep the memories alive.

  3. Plan Your Next Adventure: Having something to look forward to can help combat post-travel blues. Start researching your next destination or trip, and let the anticipation of future adventures lift your spirits.

  4. Practice Self-Care: Take care of yourself physically and emotionally as you reintegrate into your daily life. Get plenty of rest, eat healthily, and engage in activities that bring you joy.

  5. Hold onto Memories: Display photos or souvenirs from your trip in your home to remind you of the incredible experiences you had. Planning future trips can also keep the excitement of travel alive.

Remember, it's okay to feel anxious from time to time, especially when embarking on new adventures. By implementing these strategies and being kind to yourself, you can navigate travel jitters with greater ease and enjoy your journey to the fullest. Now have fun and don't forget to take pics!


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