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5 Travel Tips for Planning a Stress-Free Vacation

Vacations are supposed to be relaxing, rejuvenating and enjoyable, but sometimes you can end up needing a vacation from the vacation. If left unchecked and uncared for, these trips and vacations have a way of spiraling out of control, which totally defeats the purpose of going on them in the first place. In most cases, they have the exact opposite effect. Unstructured trips that have little definition to them may end up being boring or give a person the sense that they are wasting time. On the opposite end, a trip with too much structure leaves a vacationer out of breath and stressed out that they will be missing out on seeing that critical piece of art or architectural masterpiece. Needless to say, acts like these are a recipe for disaster.

Vacations as much as they are supposed to be an escape into freedom and liberation should still have substance. This is achieved by some good forethought planning, building a solid yet flexible schedule and in having a goal. Yes, the term relaxing can be a goal, but try going for something with more like learning a new recipe, language or activity. A vacation is not an excuse to fall into the abyss of lethargy but can rather be thought of as an opportunity to explore something that you may not have had the time to do during your normal life.

A stress-free vacation possible to achieve, but you have to mean it, plan it and execute upon it. The first thing that must be understood from the outset is that nothing is perfect. Life is not perfect. You are not perfect. This vacation may end up not being perfect, and that is alright. Unburden yourself from trying to create a perfect vacation. To plan as best as possible, just fix the errors along the way. Relieving yourself of this pressure, will not only make this go smoother, but may also open you up to new opportunities during the vacation that you may not have thought of previously.


Creating an itinerary for a vacation is a good thing. It brings structure and purpose to your day. However, having an inflexible schedule is courting disaster. By loosening the itinerary, you give yourself time and space to make any corrections that need be made. But, more importantly, you are opening yourself up to the possibility of a new experience. They crop up when you least expect them and you want to be sure that there is ample enough time to discover and explore them when the situation arises. Having a flexible timeline also means that you can react to changes that are beyond your control without totally obliterating your vacation.

Besides some much-needed R&R, what is the purpose of your trip? Is there something you would like to accomplish? Something you would like to experience? Something you would like to see? Taste? Learn? Do? Having an underlying reason gives your vacation a driving force, which will help push it forward even in the presence of conflict and the inevitable hiccups that occur on even the most well-planned trips. Furthermore, it makes you look forward to something beyond just jumping on a plane and heading to the beach.


Being well informed can decrease stress in almost any situation, and vacations are no different. For most people, stress and pressure begin to mount when the unexpected or unwelcome enter the scenario. By performing thorough research on the destination, activities, flights and even transports one can inoculate themselves from the stresses that these various factors may bring. Nowadays this can be easily accomplished using the internet. There are a dozen or so high-quality review sites which will give you a firsthand account of experiences, warnings and recommendations from fellow travelers and vacationers. Transportation and lodging information can be easily determined by using sites like Hotwire. com (don’t forget to pick a promo code from this page before booking at Hotwire). Take the guess work (also known as stress-work) out of the equation and educate yourself beforehand, so that all you need focus on is enjoying your vacation.
Taking less baggage with you, both literally and metaphorically. This is an oft-repeated advice, but it is surprising how few vacationers heed it. Just imagine wheeling around a large suitcase or luggage around steep cobblestone streets. The wheels getting jammed in every crevice and rut imaginable and the unbalanced load causing the whole thing to topple at every turn. This is often one of the biggest complaints about travel, and the ironic thing is that it could have all been avoided by simply leaving things behind. Keeping your pack to a minimum also means that you can pick up more things at your destination. Whether that is region appropriate clothing or mementos of your trip, there is now space for them in your bag. On a symbolic level, taking less of things that remind you of your old or normal life allows you to more enjoy the trip or vacation you are on. It is, after all, a vacation, a reprieve, an escape and a chance to experience something new.

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