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Memorial Day Weekend Travel Tips

by Dr. Kathleen Hall

The stress of holiday traveling can put a person over the top and with Memorial Day weekend being the first major holiday of the summer season it can be a particularly stressful time. Here are a few mindful Memorial Day weekend travel tips.

Millions of people are packing a bag and heading for a restful destination; in fact, AAA reports that 39.3 million Americans will be traveling 50 miles or more this Memorial Day weekend–that’s the highest number of Memorial Day travelers since 2005.

Memorial Day Weekend Travel Tips

Planning for your holiday stress is the solution for a happy vacation. If you and your family are planning to hit the road, consider reading the Mindful tips below.

  1. Have your offense ready. Root yourself in stress management practices. We know when a person feels out of control there stress levels increase. Memorize stress reduction tools and you’ll help yourself feel in control.
  2. Take your comfort with you. Traveling is stressful so take tools to nurture yourself. Your favorite blanket, pillow, and soundproof earphones. Download movies, books, or material you enjoy on your tech device. Download guided imagery or meditations from the app store.
  3. Food. Think of your meal planning. Most airports have a food guide in the airport, so you can eat nutritional, nourishing food. Eating the right foods can help reduce your stress. Try eating foods with omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin B6, vitamin B, or spicy foods. Eating high fat, greasy foods can make you anxious and feel stressed out. Don’t forget to drink water as you travel to stay hydrated.
  4. Exercise. When you are stuck at an airport, exercise. Walk up and down the concourses and get walking. This produces endorphins, calming hormones in the brain. You can also do yoga stretches, tai chi or chi gong. These are incredible tools for traveling.
  5. Checking in. Check in online ahead of time. It is easier to travel during the busy hectic holidays without heavy luggage. Check your luggage and it gives you more freedom and you don’t have to worry about the overhead bins space.
  6. Kids. Have each child make a list of what they want to take with them. What do they want for comfort, entertainment, to eat and to sleep? Make sure an adult checks their list before you leave the house. Keep these items in a backpack they can keep on their backs and be responsible for so you won’t have to carry them. It is also good to take an extra change of clothing for small children in case of an accident.
  7. Time. Everything takes longer during the holiday travel days. Give yourself at least 30 minutes longer than usual to travel to your destination, such as the airport. Finding a cab, checking in, lines in the bathrooms, lines at the food areas and lines at the parking lots.
  8. Medical care. Be sure to investigate the medical care facilities where you are traveling. Don’t assume that other places have the same medical care facilities you are accustomed to. This is especially true if anyone in the family has special medical conditions. Take prescription bottles with you because it is important to have your name and pharmacy on the bottle.
  9. Surrender. Embrace the attitude of surrender as you travel. Reacting to every obstacle will make you crazy and miserable–raising your blood pressure and your heart rate. Surrender to your holiday travel as a classroom, not a prison.

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