July and August are big vacation months. I know I’m looking forward to taking my vacation at the end of this month. But before I go there is a lot of planning to do ahead of time to make sure everything goes smooth.
The main thing people want during a vacation is to have some fun or relaxation and not worry about what could go wrong. So a great offence is the best defense. Think about what could go wrong now and plan to prevent it as much as possible.
Here is a list of some of the common worries and what actions to take before leaving on your trip. Below I have listed several websites and articles for more information.
Do you worry about:
- Forgetting to pack something?
Will the planned activates go as planned?
- Make a list of all the clothes, toiletries, and other items each person in your family will need for each day of your trip. Don’t forget to put both day and evening clothes. Many items should be listed more than once. Make a master-list for each person. This will be your packing list. From this list you can make a shopping list if you still need some items.
If you are driving will you find your destination without getting lost?
- Hopefully they will but a little planning ahead of time could make all the difference. Check online for the times and day the place is open before you leave for your trip. You don’t want to show up on a Tuesday only to find out that is the one day that tourist spot is closed. Also be sure to check out entry fees (amount, cash, or charge) and possible coupons. Many coupons are available online only and those few extra dollars per person can really add up the savings.
- GPS systems work great but are not perfect. Whether you have one in your car or phone it’s probably a good idea to have a hard copy backup. That means using Mapquest, Google Maps, or another map service to route out your driving. I print out directions and a map for each point A to point B I’m going to. Then I clearly label the top of the paper with the “From” location and the “To” location plus the date I will be driving it. This goes in my travel planner and has saved time, stress, and gas money on many trips.
Take the worry out of the vacation by taking care of the little things before hand. That will free up your time during the vacation to have fun and/or relaxation.
Here are some sites to help you with packing checklists. Just remember to pack light. Most airlines not only charge for luggage they will charge extra over a certain weight. The key is to stick with the basics and be willing to wash out some clothes at night in the bathroom sink if necessary.
If traveling with children has you worried about them getting bored or anxious during the trip check out the links in this blog post. There are lots of easy travel games and ideas to keep them busy for a long time.
To a lighter load along the way.