Travel, travel, travel. 2013 was FILLED with travel. Last February I was in and out of Montreal 3 times in 2 weeks, and after that, everything kind of snowballed for the rest of the year. You’d think that after traveling so much I’d have everything down pat. No mistakes, seamless itineraries, no hassles.
Heh. Not quite.
Delays, interruptions and other fun occurrences are par for the course, but there are other things that I’ve done (or fail to do), that add additional kinks to my plans. For example, you’d think that I would learn by now that packing 5 hours before a trip isn’t the smartest idea in the world. What would it take for me to prepare 48 or even 24 hours beforehand? Not a whole lot, and yet, I leave it until the last minute and stress out about it.
I’m not a fan of New Year’s resolutions because I believe that one should make changes throughout the year and continue to change their lives for the better year-round, but when it comes to travel, I clearly need to start getting my act together!
Check Flight Details Before Leaving the House 1 of 10
I'm terrible at this! As long as I've booked the flight myself, I'm safe as I receive an email notification alerting me about any cancelled flights. However, if a flight has been booked for me through a travel agent, I don't get notified. Just last month I left my house at 3 a.m. only to find that my flight had been cancelled the night before. Had I checked the details beforehand, I wouldn't have wasted the trip to the airport and could have slept in a little.
Photo credit: #96/Flickr
Embrace the Travel Pillow 2 of 10
Those funny looking travel pillows are popular for a reason. When faced with 2 back-to-back trips, I bit the bullet and purchased my own. Guess what? I slept all the way there and back without any kinks or soreness in my neck.
I will now be the very person who is mocked by many for carrying her little travel pillow on every flight. They may laugh, but I'll be the one flying in comfort thank you very much.
Aways Check-In Before a Flight 3 of 10
This is another obvious tip that I'm sure everyone else has down pat. I used to check-in for every flight, but after my son was born I stopped as you aren't allowed to check-in online if you're traveling with an infant. Because of that I stopped completely, but now that he requires his own seat, there really is no excuse. Digital boarding passes are a wonderful thing!
Photo credit: jeremyfoo/Flickr
Charge All Devices the Night Before 4 of 10
Don't leave the house without charging your camera, iPhone, and iPad battery to 100%. It's something I always forget, yet I've come to grips with the fact that although I can change my ways when it comes to my camera battery, I'll never remember the iDevices. Because of this, I bit the bullet and bought a charger that can charge up to 4 times without recharging.
It's been a lifesaver -- literally.
Stop Procrastinating When It Comes to Packing 5 of 10
This is the worst. I don't pack for a trip until the very last minute. I've been known to leave for a flight at 3 a.m. and start packing at 11 p.m. Huge mistake. My resolution is to start packing at least 24 hours before a flight. I just pray I'm able to keep this one as the hectic, crazed, last-minute packing routine has become just that -- a routine.
Photo credit: Tiberiu Ana/Flickr
Make a Travel Kit 6 of 10
Someone recommended that I create a travel kit, that's always ready for me so that I don't have to pack toiletries at the last minute. Having a travel kit filled with toothpaste, a toothbrush and travel-sized personal products, ready and waiting for me to grab and throw into my suitcase is genius and one of my resolutions is to make this a reality for 2014.
Photo credit: javajoba/Flickr
Spend More on Luggage 7 of 10
I bought a luggage set 5 years ago that has had every piece replaced under warranty (and fixed). I bought all three pieces for $199.99 -- a steal, really. After our last trip I had to say goodbye to our largest case and replaced it with something with a heftier price tag. If it lives up to its reviews and serves me for the next couple of decades, it will work out to be cheaper than the cheap stuff.
My resolution is to not cheap out when it comes to luggage. Sometimes high price tags really do mean higher quality.
Unpack As Soon As You Get Home 8 of 10
Since my flight to Jamaica 3 weeks ago, I still have a suitcase that hasn't been unpacked. It's sitting next to me as I type this. I just unpacked my last two suitcases from the previous month and I'm hoping to get to this one today. Hoping. Maybe.
Unpack as soon as you get home and don't fall into the same trap as I do. It's horrible; I don't recommend it.
Photo credit: NezTez/Flickr
Goodbye Laptop Case 9 of 10
I lost my laptop this year. It was stolen during my travels. Not to get into specifics, but if I had the laptop on me, in my carry-on bag and not separately in it's own carry-case, it would have never gone missing. From now on, my laptop will always be in my main bag; I just purchased one with a laptop sleeve built-in.
Another bonus? One less bag to carry!
Photo credit Rojer/Flickr
Pack More Snacks 10 of 10
I never bring enough food. Although I do pack bars and dried snacks, I don't end up bringing enough for the entire family which means we end up purchasing overpriced snacks at the airport. In 2014, I will become the flying snack lady!
Photo credit: Hail Merry Foods/Flickr
Find more of Nadia’s writing on her site Child Mode. You can also find her on Disney Baby and Hip Baby. Love social media? So does she! Follow her daily on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and Pinterest.