Like many things in life, stress-free travel boils down to planning. The right travel accessories also help. Here, eight tried-and-tested tips to prepare for that forthcoming work trip or holiday visit:
1. Delegate, delegate, delegate. Success in travel (and, let’s face it, in most things) comes from passing along to someone else that which you yourself need not do. Can your sister book the family dinner reservations? Could your colleague find a perfect spot to take clients for a drink? When you have to get something done in a pinch, and can’t unload it for free, consider an errand service, such as Task Rabbit.
2. Make a trip details folder. As soon as you’ve booked your travel, print out your itinerary and include any phone numbers, directions, and other particulars you’ll need. It might seem time-consuming now, but including this step can be stress-reducing and, if you’re traveling with others, argument-saving later. If you’re heading to a city with too many good places to keep track of, consider uploading or printing out a guide, including, for the best design destinations, Remodelista’s City Guides.
Above: An organized house is much nicer to return to than an unruly one.
3. Set up any house care that you will need while you are away. Do this right after you’ve made your travel arrangements. Will you need a house sitter, babysitters, pet sitters, plant waterers, someone to pick up the newspaper? Will you need to hold the mail? Do this now, not later.
4. Head to the pharmacy to refill any prescriptions or pick up toiletries you’ll need to take with you. This is one last-minute errand that can easily be done ahead of time; take care of it at least a week in advance.
Above: For crucial pre-travel rest, the 225-thread count Nap Pillowcase Pair from Matteo Home.
5. A few days before you leave, load up on Vitamin C and sleep. Sleep usually gets short changed in the days leading up to a trip, because we never accurately estimate how long it actually takes to get ready. Don’t skimp on these two and you’ll thank yourself when you return home in good health.
6. Schedule the proper prep time during the days leading up to your departure. Block off time in your calendar to get ready for your trip—pack, run errands, finalize the daily plans. Do not over-schedule the week of your departure. Will you skip the gym on Friday? Forego your friend’s dinner party? You have to make the time somehow.
Above: A weekend bag at the ready. Photo via Stewart James.
7. Three days before you leave: pack your suitcase and your carry-on bag. Don’t leave this important task until the night before—the toothbrush is always left behind, right? Use this time to catch up on your laundry, as well.
Above: An arsenal of cleaning basics from Cinq Design in Tokyo, Japan.
8. The day before: Clean the house, check-in online, and charge your devices. If possible, hire a cleaning service to come and take care of the straightening up while you’re away.