4 Tips to Reduce Stress from Holiday Travel

Dec 7 • 2015

Traveling can be nerve-wrecking in general, but adding the hustle and bustle of the holidays to the mix can create an entirely new beast. Between packing gifts, corralling the family, and preparing for potentially bad weather, stress levels are often through the roof this time of year. Keep your cool by remembering these four simple tips to reduce your holiday travel stress.

Plan Ahead
Making your travel plans in advance is one of the best ways to eliminate some of the panic that can arise the week of. Plan out a variety of routes that will get you to your destination in case of an accident or poor weather in a particular area so you have multiple options to choose from. Additionally, pick out some fun games for your kids so they won’t find themselves bored after a short period of time in the car. Map out a timeline for your drive with moments set aside for breaks and food.

Delegate Tasks When Possible
When it comes to preparing for a holiday trip, trying to plan the entire thing on your own can be overwhelming. Instead, create lists that split up tasks between everyone in the family. Encourage your kids to pack their own suitcases with guidelines on what they’ll need for each day of the trip. If you’re bringing gifts along, set aside one evening where everyone wraps the items they are giving. Provide each family member with a bag he can bring along and fill with preferred snacks, drinks, and toys to make the drive as comfortable as possible.

Get Some Sleep
Traveling while tired can put everyone on edge, so get as much sleep as you can the few days before you leave. Not only will you be more focused, but you’ll also have more patience. If you encounter any unplanned obstacles along the way, being well-rested will help you cope with them in the best possible manner.

Allow for the Unexpected
Once you arrive at your destination, being flexible is the best way to avoid holiday stress. This is especially true if you’re spending time with many different family members. It can be difficult to get everyone on the same page, so allow yourself to be open to change and spontaneity without feeling frustrated. By being able to go with the flow, you’re more likely to enjoy yourself.

While holiday travel can definitely put a lot on your plate, remember that spending time with family members and loved ones is one of the best parts of the season. Do you travel often for the holidays? We’d love to hear your tips for reducing stress in the comments below.