5 Things You SHOULD NOT DO On Your Holiday Travels
The holidays are upon us once again, and the airport gridlocks and long lines at the counter can only mean one thing—the dreaded peak season is here. Going abroad may be a common indulgence for some people, but no matter how often you travel, it always helps to keep basic life hacks in mind on your holiday travels. Here are just some of the things you SHOULD NOT DO while you’re out there!
- Traveling on peak dates
If you want to get stuck on the highway to the airport, have to wait hours and hours in line at immigration, and fight your way through the hordes of Christmas travelers clamoring to check their baggage (and occupying your space in the overhead cabin), then by all means, schedule your holiday travels on peak dates. Not only will every single must-see spot you go to be jam-packed with tourists (preventing you from taking a good picture), but prices and rates for both flights and accommodations will also be at their highest.
Of course, the most sensible thing to actually do is to schedule your trips during dates that aren’t too hectic. You may be thinking you want to take advantage of long weekends, but is saving up on your vacation leaves worth not being able to enjoy your trip because of all the people everywhere? Choose those travel dates wisely!
- Picking the first travel deal you see
There is a wealth of information and a wide variety of choices that you can get simply by browsing the World Wide Web alone—not to mention there are tons of travel apps now that you can download to see the best deals online. Especially during the holiday season, you should know how to shop around for the best packages on Agoda, Expedia, Booking.com, and the like. It may take some time before you finally find the best deal, but it will all be worth it when you see how much money you can save with a little surfing effort.
- Not planning ahead
Some people are pantsers—they love to play everything by ear. During holiday travels, however, not planning ahead of time is probably the biggest mistake you can ever make. You should always plan ahead before you decide to travel, whether it’s about something as epic as where to stay or something as seemingly simple as knowing which airport terminal to go to. You should plot your connecting flights and schedules carefully, and always take delays into consideration. Having a contingency plan for unforeseen circumstances—poor weather conditions, unexpected local events, and transportation issues—will save your beloved holiday travels from getting completely ruined. Jot down phone numbers for everything—your hotel, your airline, your car rental or shuttle service, your family, and your friends. Download significant travel apps and guide maps into your phone (you can learn more about Google map hacks HERE).
When you’re packing and bringing gifts for any reason, DO NOT wrap those gifts—chances are security personnel and inspection teams will ask you to unwrap them just to make sure you’re not smuggling anything illegal under there. Have your boarding pass saved on your mobile phone, and bring extra bags for presents and pasalubongs you might buy. If you want to know how to bring everything you need without over-packing, you can check out this challenge HERE.
- Neglecting the kids
Keeping your little ones happy, safe, and well-fed is the most important thing you have to do when you’re traveling with your children. You might want to have a few novelty items on hand for times when the kids get a little antsy, and to pacify them and keep them entertained during boring waits, scary flights, and long lines. Have snacks available, a change of clothes, and lots of water ready. Nobody said that traveling with little children is easy—in fact, some studies show that holidays abroad with small kids may not always be the wisest thing to do. Learn more about the science behind it HERE.
- Thinking that your money is limitless
We’ve all been there—whenever we’re in a new place, we always feel the urge to splurge on things just because everything feels so novel. But if you don’t want to end up with buyer’s remorse when you’re finally back home and broke, you need to keep the spending under control. Most countries abroad have tax-free options for tourists, so keep an eye out for national tax-free schemes to get a refund of the local sales tax (VAT). These countries include Turkey, Singapore, and Morocco—just be sure to keep your receipts and present them at the designated airport kiosks. Check credit card promos for lounges, discounts, and points, and when you’re on a scenic tour, forego the expensive transportation fees and walk around—it’ll not only be an eye-opening experience, but it’ll be good for your heart too! You can learn more about holiday saving tips HERE.
Finally, the most important thing you SHOULD NOT DO during your holiday travels is to stress yourself out. There are plenty of things to plan and do, and a lot of things can go wrong, especially if they are out of our control. But if you worry about every single thing, you’re not going to enjoy your vacation at all. Even when things go wrong, don’t lose your temper, and learn how to keep your cool. Remember that other people around you are stressed too—may it be the people in your party, other tourists, or the airline personnel. Take deep breaths, make the most of the situation, and stay positive. Relax, have fun, and leave nothing but footprints behind!