In September my father was injured in a serious car accident overseas, almost all common sense and logic abandoned me as I dealt with the stress and shock of having to fly to Jamaica to be with him as he received treatment and to help arrange for his return to Canada. Many of my long-time travel habits and preparedness allowed me to leave on very short notice without added stress or lost or forgotten items.
Having put my Travel Hacks through the ultimate test, I know they stand up in a crisis, and I can continue to count on them to make everyday travel less stressful and more enjoyable.
Travel Ready: As a semi-frequent business traveler I keep a fully stocked toiletries bag, an organized set of travel documents (including an up-to-date passport and NEXUS card) and a travel wallet (I also have a tested process for transferring important cards from my everyday to travel wallet) – both my passport and travel wallets have RFID compartments – and luggage of various sizes that are in good repair.
Good Packing Habits: In addition to a tried and true method of transferring from my everyday wallet, to my travel wallet – where every key item (such as my ID and Credit Cards) have their own spot; I have also developed an effective packing routine. I pack one appropriate outfit for every day or occasion I expect to be away/attend, plus one day spare, I then pack underwear and socks (as needed) to match each outfit, plus any climate specific gear or footwear that I won’t be wearing in transit – in this case I left Toronto on a blustery day with several pairs of sandals in my luggage.
Travel Rituals: I do the very same thing every time I clear customs at an airport – I purchase a bottle of water and depending on the length of the flight I purchase a copy of Vanity Fair (because a long flight is the best time to read long-form journalism). I find my gate and take a seat so that I’m not scrambling around, and I take a bathroom break 10 minutes before the posted boarding time. I board the plane relatively stress free, and I know I will be hydrated and entertained.
Staying Healthy While Away From Home: While it can be tempting to indulge at every meal while traveling – you’re on vacation, or you don’t want to waste free food – your health can take a hit, you can gain wait, or the unhealthy foods you are eating can zap your energy or make you feel awful. When I travel, I focus on breakfast; I try to ensure that my breakfast includes lean proteins and veggies or whole grains, making a healthy start to your day can work wonders.
Not everyone will need multiple pairs of shoes – although switching shoes every few hours or at a minimum each day helps your feet feel less tired, as each pair of shoes puts pressure on a different part of your foot – and, not everyone has a love for long-form journalism. But everyone can benefit from finding routines that work for you and your travel style.