8 Tips to Relax and Enjoy Your Vacation

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Some people equate vacation with stress. Between the planning, packing, logistics of travel, and making sure it’s paid for– you are physically & mentally ready for a break. By the time you check into your hotel, you are too wound up to actually relax. It’s time to reclaim your vacation! Here are 8 tips to help you relax and enjoy your vacation every single time.

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How to Decompress on Vacation

A Room With a View

Start by taking a little bit of time to make your hotel reservation. Don’t skim the room descriptions–  read them thoroughly before you book one. Take a look at all the hotel rooms and their perspective views. For example, a room with a beautiful view can go a long way to help you enjoy your vacation. Imagine how you will feel if it takes your breath away each time you look out the window. Call the hotel if you have specific questions about amenities, elevator location, etc… Remember, a nice room improves your mood, giving you the best chance to enjoy your vacation.



Pay in Advance


Many people don’t go on vacation because they think it’s so expensive. I learned this tip firsthand. I realized my husband was able to relax more knowing we weren’t coming back home to a bunch of bills. So now, I try to pay for the large ticket items (travel and accommodations) well in advance. I’ve even paid for a cruise in installments up to 6 months prior to travel so that it wasn’t a huge financial burden,




But Stay in the Moment


Take this opportunity to unplug from social media. Limit the amount of eye strain by watching less TV and other electronic devices like cell phones, laptops, and readers. Notice I didn’t say avoid them. Unfortunately, some people feel more stressed about going cold turkey. If you’re one of these people, take baby steps in the direction of total deprivation–one day.



Settle In for a Good Time


Take the contents out of your luggage and put them away. Place your toothbrush and toothpaste up in the bathroom.  And store your luggage in the closet, away from view. Unpacking will help you relax and finish the act of traveling which often adds to the stress of vacation.



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Be Flexible


Travel is unpredictable. You can’t count on everything always working out. And when this happens, you’ve got to go with the flow. Make sure you have a backup plan if the weather turns, the ferry breaks down or you miss a connection. when you research tours and excursions, pay attention to their reliability. You may also want to consider travel insurance– just in case.


Don’t Over-do It


Don’t over-plan, over-pack or over-spend. People on vacation can easily overdo it. And by “it”, I mean everything. Don’t make too many plans, bring more stuff than you need or spend money you don’t have. If you want to enjoy your vacation, you need to keep it simple. The idea is to unload the baggage you’re already carrying.


Get Your Snack On


Sometimes anxiety arises when we leave our comfort zone. One of the best ways to conquer this is to bring along a comforting snack to enjoy. In addition, make sure you try the local foods and drinks. Head to a restaurant or lounge for a snack, drink, or meal. You want to enjoy your vacation, so avoid anything that could make you anxious or lethargic.


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Treat Yourself


Don’t wait, get a massage, manicure, or pedicure as soon as you arrive. Any treatment that involves the senses (sight, touch, smell, sound, or smell) will help you relax and enjoy your vacation sooner. When we were in Thailand, Steven got an aromatherapy massage in the morning and once at night. This routine might sound excessive. But it helped him get a good night’s sleep which is also very important while on vacation.


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  1. Astrid

    Awesome tips! That first picture immediately made me smile. Agreed, it takes a couple of days to decompress but it is so important to unplug and stay in the moment. I’ll remember these tips when I go on my next vacation.

  2. Becca Wilson

    These are some really great tips! I totally agree with paying and booking things in advance. It takes some of the stress off of you.

    1. duffelbagspouse

      There’s tips for everything. LOL. Everyone means to relax, but they make the mistake of trying to do too much, end up letting the stresses of travel and money get in the way.

  3. Jelena

    Great tips for a relaxed trip. I spent 14 days on the coast of Greece in July and I almost took advantage of each of these tips. I was just a little on the internet in the morning while I was drinking coffee.

  4. Mommy Sigrid

    hmmm. Decompress, I like that. Maybe for next vacation. It’s just that when we go on vacation, we visit a new place. So we really maximize our time there, especially if it’s international travel. Then we get so tired haha

  5. Debby

    These are excellent tips and are easier to follow before you have kids or after you have an empty nest. Very hard to do these with kids though, but you are building great memories.

    1. duffelbagspouse

      Thanks for your comment and perspectives. I’m an empty nester. Which points do you find particular hard to follow with kids. Other than a little more planning, I was able to do all the above with two kids in tow?

  6. Joanna

    I do love to combine my holidays with both activities and relaxing moments. I definitely am all in for a room with a view and after a day of hiking I think there’s nothing better than a massage for example.

  7. David Elliott

    The real key to enjoying a vacation is the ability to stay in the moment and appreciate things as they are happening. When you aren’t doing that you are working in some way or another.

  8. Devyani Ray

    Love these tips. I have to admit, I have issues being flexible. Once it’s set in my head, its done! I am working to change that πŸ™‚

    1. duffelbagspouse

      You and my hubby. I have to remind him constantly that vacations aren’t supposed to feel like work. Things aren’t going to always work out, so chill and let’s enjoy whatever happens together.

  9. Christine

    With kids I always find myself planning out everything else no one can’t decide on what to do or when to do it. I liked all your other tips and it sounds wonderful!

    1. duffelbagspouse

      I feel ya. Kids change it all up. They want what they want, when they want it. It makes much more sense to do more research and schedule activities with them. But even with them, I found if I stayed calm and flexible they seemed more relaxed too. The little ones just emulate us– actions and reactions. I would constantly remind myself that its the time we are spending together and not what we are doing. And as long as were together, its all good.

  10. Jessica Lynn Martin

    Those are really great tips on how to have a more enjoyable vacation. I especially love the ones about stay in the moment and be flexible. Both are important for having a good and relaxing time on vacation.

    1. duffelbagspouse

      Yes, its hard to enjoy a really structure vacation unless thats what you’ve signed up for. You have to realize, something usually goes wrong when you travel.

    1. duffelbagspouse

      g back to a huge unpaid bill is enough to really enjoy your time. I love being able to finance my trips through increments or installments.

    1. duffelbagspouse

      Thank you. Lol, kids always add flavor to the soup. I really appreciate your support and I hope you come back again soon.

    1. duffelbagspouse

      You can’t get enough recommendations and opinions. I love them too, just make sure you get a feel for whether their opinions are valid from other postings.

  11. Nicole

    I’m definitely guilty of over planning! I get so excited about all the things I can experience that I wouldn’t be able to do at home. I then end up with a hectic schedule.

  12. Talya Knable

    Great tips!!! I wrote a post on traveling with kids and ways to make it easier!! There is so much that goes into traveling (with or without kids) but a little planning can make it more enjoyable and relaxing!! Thank you for the tips.

  13. Ally

    Staying in the moment is something I struggle with. It is so hard to unplug sometimes, but totally essential for a more relaxing vacation.

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