Travelling overseas can be a stressful experience. There is the potential for many things to go wrong: flight connections can be missed, that delicious street meal may come back to bite you, and you may lose all your money from a Balinese ATM (yup, that happened to us).
But travel is so rewarding that it’s worth all the potential stress.
We’ve been travelling together for almost eight years (sheesh!) and we have learned to deal with stresses that pop up while travelling and also before you head away. So here are some tips that we recommend to cope with stress while travelling!
How to cope with stress while travelling
1. Look at package holidays
For first-time travellers, buying a package holiday deal can be your saviour. It’s stressful enough going overseas for the first time that it can be nice to let someone else do the planning for you! With a package deal, you don’t have to find accommodation or worry about airport transfers, so you can be totally relaxed from the time you get on the plane. We purchased a package deal for our first time overseas together to Bali, and it definitely made things easier! Package deals often save you a lot of money too.
2. Don’t run late!
Leave plenty of time to get places if you have something booked. Traffic jams can be your worst nightmare if you’re rushing to catch a flight because you didn’t leave early enough!
3. Where’s your moolah?
Have backups of money in different places. We each carry debit cards and a limited amount of cash in our wallets, and also have a credit card and cash stashed in one of our big backpacks just in case. We hope we never have to use the stashed card!
4. It’s safest in the safe
Use the hotel safe. It’s not worth getting your passport and money stolen because you left it in your bag in your room!
5. Bali belly? No thanks!
If the food looks dodgy, it probably is. It’s not the end of the world if you get Bali belly, but it sure puts a dampener on your holiday for a few days! Stay away from food that looks like it has been sitting out for a while, especially in hot climates. And always (particularly for developing countries) drink bottled water.
6. Store things in the cloud
Keep copies of your passport, credit cards, tickets, and other important documents on a service like Google Drive or Dropbox, so if you lose them you can access them from any computer.
7. Flexibility is key
Be flexible. Things that can go wrong, will go wrong. You need to learn to cope with things not going as planned. And what’s the big deal if you have to wait another few hours for the next bus or train, anyway?
8. Step back and smell the roses (you’re on holiday – enjoy it!).
One of the biggest reasons we travel especially is to experience a new way of life, whether it’s through food, culture, or landscapes. We think it should not feel like home or you’re doing it all wrong.
Always look at travel with an open mind – what will be will be. And what doesn’t kill you or leave you hanging over a toilet in a less than desirable place only makes you stronger (we like to think so anyway!). So you need to be flexible while planning or during your next overseas adventure because shit happens and plans change. What may put a dampener on your day should not change the overall experience of your trip.
So take a deep breath, grab yourself a beer or wine, and soak in the scenery! Life is nothing without a little adventure and it sure makes for a good story.