If you are like the majority of the 300 million people living in the United States, or the other thousands upon thousands across the globe, you’re eagerly anticipating your final summer getaway. To anyone who grew up in the 20th century, summer vacation seems like an ancient tradition, something that’s always been a part of our lives. Vacation is a time to renew yourself, recharge the batteries, spend some quality time with family and friends. But, ironically, vacations can also be a source of worry and stress. Especially when you have kids.
The small but no less present dangers of traveling — worries about the home you’re leaving behind, work and how you’re going to entertain your little ones — can plague you most at a time when you’re supposed to be relaxing. It doesn’t have to be this way, however. Below are some tips to help you have a stress relieving, anxiety-free summer vacation this year:
Stop Worrying About Money
Worries about money spent on vacation probably tops the list but there are lots of ways to save money on vacation and keep the trip within any budget. Booking trips in advance, utilizing packages deals, researching best rates, packing meals and snacks for your kids for the travel and avoiding peak flight times are all ways to save money. A little Internet research will give you more ideas, as well.
Protect Your Identity
Always be aware of your physical surroundings. Don’t log in to personal or bank accounts from public computers. Password-protect your mobile devices and keep a close eye on them. Keep your wallet and purse secure in public places, and consider using a professional service like Lifelock ID theft protection to guard against fraud.
Secure Your Business
Small business owners are probably the biggest vacation worry warts. Consider closing the business, or if that’s not possible, find someone you trust to run the ship while you’re gone. With proper planning, a week or two of turning off your work brain should not affect the work you leave behind.
Inform Your Neighbors You’ll be Gone
As long as you can trust them, your neighbors can keep an eye on the house and maybe even pick up the mail and paper for you while you’re gone.
Don’t Stop Eating Healthy or Exercising
Research healthy restaurant choices along your route, take along healthy snacks, watch the adult beverages and try to fit physically demanding activities into the itinerary.
Bring an Emergency Kit
Especially if you’re on the road with kids, make up a kit with basic first aid supplies, water, snacks and anything else you can think of to deal with emergencies. You can pack a surprising amount in a small bag.
Carry Personal Protection
Keychain bottles of pepper spray are inexpensive and surprisingly effective.
Carry Two Cell Phones
A cell is your No. 1 safety device and it’s a great idea to have a backup.
Tie up Loose Ends
It may sound like a no brainer, but an unpaid bill or home maintenance problem can have you tied in knots the entire trip.
Make Sure the Coffee Maker is Turned Off
Check and recheck it and do it again. Otherwise it’ll drive you crazy.
With a little common sense and planning, you can ensure a worry-free and relaxing summer vacation this year.
About the Author:
Thanks to Anne Greene for this content. Anne left the insurance industry to pursue a career in writing, When she’s not working on her novel, she is freelancing or traveling with her husband and kids.