After quickly going from someone who rarely travels to someone who is away more than they are home, I have learned some hard lessons while on the road.

Ask for Help

If you are like me and cling to self-reliance like it’s the last drop of water and you are dying of thirst, this may be a slice of humble pie that is hard to take down. This will help save your sanity and make sure all of your needs are met, I promise, this is huge.

Whether it be something as simple as asking for directions, a ride to the airport, or even a few minutes to yourself to become centered or get a quick workout in; do it! It will save you time, frustration, and sanity.

I have found that my belief systems include being an empowered woman who can do everything. While I am a lot more capable than I give myself credit for at times, everything is a pretty unrealistic expectation. Those little things that we need or need help with that during normal times I can put off and let them slide, but while I am traveling, I am in unfamiliar places and more vulnerable than usual. I am responsible for making sure my needs are met, but there is no shame in asking for help meeting them. It is actually a sign of strength.

Be Mindful of What Goes In Your Mouth

I know a lot of people completely let off of any healthy eating habits they may have while traveling, but this is an area I have found that can make or break my trip. I personally have a very temperamental gastrointestinal tract so one or two bad life decisions can put me into a great deal of pain.

Bottom line, if you are eating for health, you have a higher immunity, your brain functions better, and you are going to look and feel better. I am not a big fan of meal replacements like powdered shakes or bars, but while traveling it is a much better option than grabbing a greasy fast food meal. I bring a shaker with mini-Tupperware containers measured out with enough for two shakes each and some meal bars so I know I can always eat when I need to. This also helps save money as well.

Always Check Your Flights Beforehand and Check In Early Online

This may sound like a no-brainer, but over the past week I have found that I really need to make sure I am checking the connecting flights as well. There has been a lot of snow in the United States recently and even though the weather is a-okay where I am departing and at my destination, it doesn’t mean the connecting flight will be flawless. I have spent almost a full day (yes, that is 24 hours!) of my past week in airports due to inclimate weather causing flights to be delayed coming in if they are coming from an area with bad weather or bad weather in the airport I am connecting through. My last trip ended up having to be cancelled after a day in the Denver airport. Which leads me to…

If You Are Flying Multiple Places in a Series of Days, PLEASE Use the Same Airline!

I never ever thought this would be an issue if I were to get in one day and depart the next. Lesson learned. If you are flying with the same airline the entire trip, they can be much more accommodating in helping you stay on course. I promise, should something happen, this will save you a ton of time and money.

I recently, to stay under budget, used three different airlines for a trip where I was flying in each place one day and flying out the next. Day one completely got cancelled due to my extended stay at the Denver International Airport, however, I still needed to make it out to where my first flight was headed to catch my second flight, early the next day on a different airline.

The airline I was on could get me to the airport of my connecting flight the next day, but not to where I really needed to go without charging me about $500 since it was on a different airline and I would need to pay the difference (which is quite high the day before) and the transfer fee. The airline I was flying with early the next morning demanded $405 to cut out the first part of my flight. (so basically they wanted me to pay more than the original flight to take half of my flight on top of already paying for the entire one) The risk of missing my flight was now pretty good since it had already been pushed back over 12 hours in a series of 5 different delays. So at the risk of being stranded on the west coast having to buy a same-day ticket, I took the free ride home and got credit.

Also, the third airline was Southwest so they are awesome about no transfer fees and last minute cancellations. I could have gotten credit with Alaskan, but after the transfer fee I would have had $40 credit and honestly, with my situation, I have no desire to fly with them, ever.

Moral of the story, had I thought ahead and booked it all with the same airline (which is a bit more work since finding airlines that service every area on a trip can be difficult), they would have just taken me to my second destination and credited my second flight (but this may depend on which airline you are using too).

Take Time for Self-Care

Yes, I know it can be tempting to leave your awesome self-care habits at home, but this is one you may not pay for now, but probably will later on. I have gotten pretty crafty at doing squats while I brush my teeth, push-ups after prayer, burpees after meditation, you get the idea.

Even if your schedule is packed full, stick it in during the time you’d be surfing Facebook or whatever your time trap is. I love the Chicago Airport because they actually have a yoga room. Two birds, one stone. I get my movement on and then follow with a meditation. Imagine that, a layover that fills your cup instead of wearing you down! Get creative, but get it in there.

Protect Your Health

The bugs are out there and yes, you are susceptible! I can’t stress enough how important it is to boost your immune system while traveling. For me this is vital since I already have to put a lot of effort into keeping the symptoms of dysautonomia at bay, one straw can throw my body out of whack for a month or longer.

While traveling, you want to keep up on your immunity, but also make sure to take care of your skin to keep anything out of your body. It is winter, the season of dry skin. Dry skin can lead to cracked skin, which opens the expressway for bacteria and viruses into your body. Something as simple as a dry skin patch with a tiny tear in the skin on the back of your neck can quickly become a Staph infection if you lean back in the wrong seat. Trust me, I know.

I’ve started adding a drop or two of the Protective Essential Oil Blend  to my lotion or coconut oil to provide an added layer of protection. No one wants to be ill while traveling!

And a Bonus tip…

Airport free wi-fi is usually junk. I’ve sent a handful of emails and messages that never went through. The Boingo service is $4.95 for the first 3 months (then it’s $9.95) and even though it’s not the super fast speeds I’m used to, it’s absolutely worth every penny since every airport I’d had a layover in offers it.

 

While the past month has been pretty eventful and I’ve learned the hard way some ways to take the stress out traveling to stay healthy and sane, I am looking forward to the next three months. In the right mindset and proper planning (including plan B and C planning) a few hiccups along the way can easily be recovered from!

Being new to the “jet-setter” scene, I’d love to know, what are your best tips to stay healthy and sane during travels? Share them in the comments below!

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