The holiday season is more of a stressful time for most people than they’d prefer to admit. A lot of different factors converge to make Christmas and the surrounding time a difficult process. From financial strains that make gift purchases difficult to the pressure of visiting family members, stress is a natural response during this time.
One of the biggest contributors to stress – travelling – can compound this effect during the Christmas season. Whether you’re travelling to a nearby village or leaving the country, being away from home is hardly ever a stress-free situation.
If you’re travelling for Christmas this year, then you need to make a plan to handle all of the logistics upfront and reduce the potential for stress and mishaps. Let’s review some of the considerations you should be making before you take any Christmas trip.
You Don’t Want to be Stranded
If you’re planning on taking a road trip to visit family – or merely planning a holiday – then you’ll want to make sure that your vehicle is in working order. Nothing is worse than having a mechanical issue derail your travel plans right around the holidays, especially when many shops will be closed or have shortened hours.
Before you go anywhere, be sure to schedule a car inspection and tune-up so that you’re not caught off-guard by a potential mishap. This tune-up should check everything from tyre pressure and alignment to fluids and transmission. While this won’t necessarily prevent any and every potential issue while travelling, it can catch bigger problems before you depart for your destination.
Depending on the climate, you may want to consider investing in a new battery for your automobile (for ideas on which brands to consider, check out the line-up of Hardwarexpress batteries, which include Yuasa batteries). One of the most common auto problems during winter months is weak and old batteries failing.
Accommodations May Already Be Gone
Even if you’re planning to visit family for the holidays, not everybody has the ability to house their entire family. Many Christmas travellers will need to secure accommodations for their holiday trips. Depending on where you are heading, it may already be too late to make reservations.
Heavily populated areas and tourist destinations often book their holiday season rooms and rentals months in advance. As such, it can be difficult to find adequate lodging if you wait until the last minute. If you haven’t already made reservations, be sure to use a hotel availability service to determine which places have openings. In the event you can’t find a traditional hotel, then consider seeking a home through a service like Airbnb.
The Stress Will Drive You Crazy
We’ve already alluded to it above, but stress during the Christmas season is no jolly matter. Ultimately, waiting until the last minute to put together your holiday plans will leave you with more unexpected occurrences, disappointments, and other issues that can make your trip miserable.
Between the financial stress of the holidays, the added burden of dealing with extended family members and the effects on some that come from the short and cold days, you could be a ticking time bomb waiting to blow. Add to that last-minute hiccups and problems with holiday plans and it’s a recipe for disaster. Do yourself and your family a favour and be proactive in planning for Christmas.
The health effects of stress are clear. Not only will this make your Christmas holiday more miserable but it can harm the health and experiences of those around you.
You’ll Save Money
The earlier you begin planning for Christmas travel, the more money you’ll tend to save. While it may be a bit late to rack up big savings on things like accommodations in 2017, future Christmas plans can be more affordable by acting early.
Last-minute reservations for flights, hotels, and rental cars come at a premium. Likewise, dealing with the everyday hassles of life after arriving at your destination can cost more money than you were expecting. For those who plan in advance by purchasing foodstuffs to take on the trip, for example, you’ll be able to eat and cook however you’d like without having to pay exorbitant prices and/or face empty shelves in the days after Christmas. You can also follow these tips to save fuel costs on your trip.
You’ll Have More Free Time During Christmas
Waiting until the last minute – or even once on holiday – to deal with many of the travel logistics can sap valuable time away from you. This is supposed to be a time for family, friends, and being together. If you’re having to run around and deal with all of these preparations right before and during travel, that’s going to minimise the time you have to spend with family.
By dealing with these concerns days, weeks or even months in advance (depending on the task), you’ll be able to enjoy more time while travelling to do what you want.
It just makes sense to plan ahead when travelling for Christmas. Whether you’re travelling by car or by plane, getting everything sorted before the big day can help you save money, time and your own sanity.