Last updated: 03:06 PM ET, Thu October 27 2016

Avoiding Travel Stress: Travel Agents Share Their Secrets

Features & Advice Lisa Iannucci October 27, 2016

Avoiding Travel Stress: Travel Agents Share Their Secrets

Photo courtesy of Thinkstock

What’s a favorite tip about easy ways to avoid travel stress?

Travel can be stressful, from the security lines at the airport to the lost luggage and the crowded highways. Travel agents are all too familiar with this stress. They travel on their own to visit destinations and they are always there to help their clients out of precarious, and stressful, situations. So, we decided to ask them for their favorite tips to avoid travel stress.

Plan ahead: Rhonda Day, a Dream Vacations Franchise Owner/Vacation Specialist from Louisville, Kentucky said that taking care of the little details ahead of time removes the stress from the actual travel. “For example, one day I get my suitcase out and pack all my blouses,” she explained. “The next day, I may pull together my itinerary, print out any documents I need, etc. The next day I may pack all my pants. By doing a few things every day, hopefully by the time the trip comes around, I am just about ready.”

List it: Taking it one step further, Jeff Leach, owner of Barefoot Vacations, a Dream Vacations Franchise Owner and Vacation Specialist in Omaha, Nebraska, uses lists to keep his travels organized. “If you are a frequent traveler, why not type these lists and save them on your computer to print out each time you take a trip?” he said. “The packing list should not only include the clothing you wish to pack, but also key travel essentials like passports, hotel reservations, flight information, and reading material or tablet. By properly checking off each item on your list, you will be able to leave your home stress free and know that you are traveling with everything you will need.”

Weather the trip: Lynn Belles, an independent Vacation Specialist with Cruises Inc. from Rockford, Illinois, advises anyone traveling in the winter and living in a snow-prone area to book a Park Sleep and Fly Hotel for the night before your flight. “Choose a hotel with covered parking and a free airport shuttle,” she said. “Drive to the hotel in leisure, because your flight isn't till tomorrow. When you arrive at the hotel, park in a covered spot to protect your car from the snow. Then you can get a good night’s sleep because you don't have to worry about getting to the airport the next day. All you have to do is take the hotel’s free airport shuttle and get dropped off at the flight check-in counter.” 

Be flexible: Things happen and Mark Noenning, executive vice president and general manager of The Mark Travel Corporation, said that the unexpected can become the best part of your trip. “A lot of times that gives you the ability to explore something that is off of your itinerary,” he said. “Most often your most memorable experience will be one that was unplanned and the one you will talk about for years to come.”

Get help: To reduce the amount of stress on your trip, all agents recommend working with a travel expert. ““I also always recommend using a travel agent when making your vacation plans,” said Noenning. “They have the knowledge to help you book the experience of your dreams that fits within your budget.”

Working with someone to take care of the travel details will help you to relax and enjoy a stress-free vacation.