Vacations provide an opportunity to relax and unwind. Yet despite the benefits of vacations, a Google Consumer survey for the travel website Skift found that nearly 42 per cent of the 1,500 American participants did not take any vacation days in 2014.
People have plenty of reasons to avoid traveling, but many may stay home simply because they have not mastered the art of stress-free travel. Scheduling airline flights, booking accommodations, coordinating rental cars, and planning itineraries is not always so easy, but there are plenty of ways to make vacation planning easier.
Use a travel agent
There certainly are a long list of user-friendly travel apps and websites. However, there’s something to be said about the ease of putting travel arrangements in the hands of a professional agent. Travel agents know the ins and outs of various resorts, cruise lines, airports, and hotels. That knowledge and expertise can remove the stress from vacation planning. Travel agents also may be privy to discount codes or other specials not open to the general public and they can pass these savings on to their customers
Choose all-inclusive trips
If the small details of travel cause you the greatest amount of grief, all-inclusive resorts can remove that problem. All-inclusive vacations pack amenities, food, activities, and sometimes transportation into one price. Once travelers arrive at the resort, they may not have to take their wallets out at all. All-inclusive vacations may not offer the same measure of customization as other trips, but the ease of preparing for such trips is enticing.
Become an airline’s repeat customer
Flying the same airline again and again can be advantageous. Travelers will be familiar with the policies of the airline, including fees and restrictions regarding baggage. This cuts down on the amount of research that needs to be done prior to each vacation. Many airlines also offer frequent flier benefits that translate into everything from advanced boarding privileges to fare discounts to accumulation of airline miles to use on future flights.
Purchase travel insurance
Travel insurance can be a worthy investment, especially for expensive vacations and business trips. Many plans offer protection against lost luggage, trip cancellation and some out-of-network medical services. Use a service such as InsureMyTrip to find the right travel plan.
Use a travel-friendly credit card
For those traveling internationally, a credit card with no foreign transaction fees is a must. Another thing to consider is a “smart chip” credit card. Such cards have a special unique chip embedded in them, and these chips serve as an added measure of security. Many retailers, restaurants, hotels and public transit across Europe and Asia require these cards for transactions and cannot process older swipe and sign cards.
Travel can recharge a person’s proverbial batteries. Savvy travelers know that there are many ways to remove some of the more aggravating aspects of traveling.