I love to travel. I think most people these days feel that collecting moments and experiences is the way to go. There are so many beautiful places around the world to see, good food to eat, great music to dance to, beaches to soak up the sun and great heights to explore. Some would say I am a little neurotic when it comes to getting ready for a trip. I like to get my life in order before I go on a trip, this includes a weekend getaway. There’s no point in going away on a relaxing vacation just to come home to chaos. What’s the point? It sort of wipes away the vacation bliss that should last at the very least a week when you return home. Dishes in the sink, piles of laundry, bills you should have paid before you left or an untidy home. Talk about a vacation buzz kill. You’re killing all of that goodness you experienced. Since your home is your sanctuary, I think it’s important to create a space that is truly an oasis. A space that doesn’t make you feel overwhelmed or stressed.
When I get home from a vacation I know that I will return home to a space that’s ready to welcome me with the same bliss and calm I felt while I was away. Fresh sheets, clean house, no laundry, no bills stacked up, or dishes. It really makes a difference.
How to get ready for a blissful Vacation?
Become An Early Shopper & Early Packer
If you are going to visit your family or friends and plan on bringing gifts, get all your gift shopping done as soon as possible. Do NOT wait until the last minute. Write a list of who you would like to shop for and what you would like to buy them. If it’s not on your list forget about it and don’t add anything to the list unless it’s something you MUST purchase. Plan your shopping trips so they fall a week or two before your departure date. I know what you are going to say, I don’t have time? You do. It’s all a matter of how you prioritize your day. You can shop online these days and receive items the next day, so consider this if you can’t get to the mall or shops.
For some reason, every product you own seems to run out before vacation! This is normally the last minute shopping most travelers find themselves doing the night before. Yes, I know a lot of drugstores are open 24hours so you think it’s okay to wait until the last minute. Don’t do this. You will most likely end up forgetting something because you will be up all night frantically packing. It’s important to get a good night sleep before traveling. I pack early. I get all my travel products ready to go and place them in a clear zip lock bag. Not only will this protect your clothing if there is any leakage, it makes things easier for customs. A friend of mine used a paper bag for her self-tanner, not only did it leak all over her clothes but her bag was opened by customs and whoever packed it again clearly didn’t take the time place the items back neatly to prevent the mess she later found.
Write a list of all the products or items you will need to pack. If you don’t want to use your flat iron or clippers for example until you get to your destination pack it. Whatever you need that’s not in-use pack it. Zip lock bags are your friend and will keep your bag neat and tidy.
Start packing your bag a few days before your departure date. Get your laundry done while you pack so you can pack the clothing in the wash that you plan to take with you.
Clean It Up
A lot of my friends think I am crazy when they call me the day or two before my vacation and I am cleaning the house and doing laundry. It’s a travel ritual I have been doing for years. I love coming home to a clean space and clean sheets. It’s the best first night back in your home. After traveling through dirty airports, you will thank yourself for this extra vacation prep. You will start your work week excited and energized. It’s truly one of the best vacation prep rituals you will get hooked on.
Do Your Research
I think this one is pretty simple and I am sure most of you do this but before you travel do your research. Find out the rules and customs of where you are going. Even something like a sleeping pill is illegal in certain countries. Find out what you can travel with and what the weather conditions are like. This is will help you pack better for the climate. Know the emergency numbers, they’re not the same all over the world FYI and store them on your phone. Look for sites that feature the place you would like to visit, they tend to give you a few pointers on what to bring and what not to. Do you need a VISA before arrival or can you get one when you arrive at the airport? All these little details will save you a lot of stress. If you have to pay for your VISA at the airport make sure have cash on hand in the required currency. Some airports require immunization documents. I am sure the last thing you want to do when you arrive in a different country is to get your shots at an airport (I have seen this).
It amazes me how many people don’t do this! Who has time to line up? This process honestly stresses me out. Thank goodness for online check-in! Unless you would like to make arrangements with the airline that require you to speak to an agent the day of departure, check-in online. Most airlines also offer great deals where you can upgrade your seat at a discounted price and certain deals are only available when you check-in online. This also gives you a chance to select your seat.