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Easy-to-Forget Boxes to Check Off

Easy-to-Forget Boxes to Check Off

When I travel I like to do so with a completely empty mind.

Wait, that doesn’t sound right. What I mean is, I like to be stress-free.  I want everything to go perfectly.

The problem is that the world rarely listens to me just because I want something to go perfectly. Nope, I could be lazy and leave everything until the last minute before leaving on a trip and hope for the best, or I can buckle down and take care of a few things ahead of time and enjoy my trip much more.

Here’s seven boxes to check off before you travel. 

1. Pack Appropriately

The most important checkbox is always the easiest to screw up. Why? Because it’s difficult to pre-plan an entires trip’s wardrobe requirements without visual cues. Before you travel, ask yourself things like:

  • Will the hotel have a pool?
  • Will I wear more than one pair of shoes/flip-flops/heels?
  • How hot will it get?
  • How cold will it get?

 “Pfft, I won’t need swim trunks!”I say this all the time, but every time I arrive at a hotel with a swimming pool without a set of trunks I cry a little on the inside. And the outside.


2. Email Autoresponders

Email is a crucial part of any job these days, but it’s the last thing we want to be bogged down with when we’re travelling. Knowing your clients, customers or grandparents will receive an automated message explaining your whereabouts is an important mental hurdle whether you’re heading out of town for business or leisure. Autoresponders help us relax when we’re on vacation and let us focus on the tasks at hand when we’re traveling for business.


3. Check in With Clients

Speaking of business trips, it’s a good idea to check in with your clients or customers before leaving on a trip. Even if you intend on checking your email while you’re away, a quick personalized note shows initiative and tells them you care even when you’re in a different city. Sure, a customer might not even realize you’re out of town, but a personalized note humanizes you in their eyes and reminds customers that you’re a person too.

4. Mail, Bills, Life Responsibilities

Nothing interferes with travel more than knowing there’s something you needed to take care of before leaving or immediately upon arrival. I recently took a seven day vacation that overlapped with the 1st of the month. Yes, it was a giant hassle making sure bills were paid and invoices were sent while I was on a beach in another country.

5. Arrange Transportation Home

Getting to the airport is the easy part. Whether you take a bus or park at the terminal, it’s easy to plan the departure. We often forget about our arrivals, however. Not knowing how you’re getting home is just another element that causes stress while you’re away. Even if the journey home is a train trip followed by a bus ride followed by a walk, as long as you know that information ahead of time then you won’t need to worry about it.


6. Tidy Up

One of the best parts about travelling? Coming home to a clean house. Messy houses or yards completely erase all the effort you took to relax on your trip. I don’t think you need to scrub floor to ceiling before leaving (although I know a certain someone who would disagree with that sentiment completely), but a tidy house will be a welcome sight when you get home.

7. Hugs n’ Kisses

Scratch number one, this point is the most important if you are travelling without your partner. It’s particularly difficult for people who travel often to remember to say a sincere goodbye to a partner before leaving. Even when it’s commonplace, travelling to a new location puts physical distance between you and your loved ones. 

So, how do we make our families feel loved before we leave? Just like every other checked box: plan ahead! Pick up some flowers or some other sentiment that says, “I don’t care that I’ll only be gone for the day, just one day spent far away from you is one too many.”

Yes, you can use that line!  Happy Labour Day long weekend everyone!