18 Smart Travel Tips That Eliminate Stress From Your Summer Vacation

In the days before you set out on a trip, your mind is already on its way to your destination – imagine Warm sand between your toes or the amazing landmarks Honor your line of sight. (If you’re hoping to capture beautiful holiday memories on camera, here’s it Essential travel photography equipment to pack.) But with an impending trip also comes a pile of logistics to manage, and you might find the excitement overshadowed by the tension.

First, you may encounter Air tickets are more expensive than ever You also book your flight. after ranking Your time outside the officeYou have to Prepare your home for your absence And make sure it’s safe. then there Knowing what to packnot to mention Fit it all in your bag.

Yes, vacations require hours of planning in advance, but it’s easy to handle when making a clear to-do list. These pre-travel tips can make your trip a walk in the park. Or prefer walking on the beach.

Packing List Basics Most People Don’t Think About

A few small additions to your bag can reduce the hassle and increase the convenience of travel. Here are some basics you may already have in your home. (If you’re interested in bringing a computer or tablet on your trip, be sure to also check out our Must-have travel gadgets.)

1. Pack a reusable water bottle

with heat waves approachingThis is a must – especially if you’re not staying in an environment with easy access to free water. A water bladder (a bag that fits in your backpack and sends water to your mouth through a long tube) is a useful option for more hiking-oriented trips, but keep in mind that cleaning it is more complicated. Either way, you need some kind of reusable container Always keeps you hydrated. Otherwise you will have to rely on buying bottled water, which is expensive in tourist centers and not always possible in rural areas. Below is a list of Our favorite water bottles of 2022. If the tap water for your destination is not potable, try Water bottle with built-in filter.

hydrate or die.

Big Tess

2. Bring drying papers

Sarcastically, It’s harmful to your dryer. But dried sheets will do wonders for your smelly shoes. Gather them and tape them inside (or over the footrests for sandals) before you go to bed. This will reduce the bad smell that inevitably builds up after days of walking. Blow-drying sheets can also get rid of deodorant stains on clothes and smooth out frizz in your hair. (Here are 20 unexpected ways dryer sheets can come in handy.)

Seven bound grocery bags stacked on top of each other

Pack plastic shopping bags to prevent dirty clothes from staining your clean clothes.

Mrs. Getty

3. Don’t forget the plastic bags

Nothing fancy, just the disposable grocery bags you’ve stuffed into the back of your pantry. Although they are not the most luxurious to travel, plastic bags prove useful in a number of situations. You can fold your worn clothes and stuff them into plastic bags to separate the soiled clothes from the rest of your bag and prevent them from staining the rest of your clothes. They can also provide some temporary storage for wet swimwear and tight shoes. Plus, if there’s any chance that you’ll be shopping for groceries on your trip, you can reuse plastic shopping bags in countries that prohibit stores from providing them or require stores to charge extra for them.

Packing tips to fit more in your bag

Once you set what or what To pack, then comes find out How to pack. whether you try Squeeze your belongings into a small handbag Or you fill up more space suitcase If you plan to check in at the airport, packing strategically can increase space in your luggage and make it easier to get to the things you desperately need.

4. Fold, roll and cube your clothes

Every traveler has his or her favorite way of packing clothes: some fold their clothes, some roll them into logs and some flatten them into packing cubes. We recommend Mix these three strategies. Fold your bulky, organized clothes: jeans, pants, formal dresses and cardigans. Then roll up the rest of the clothing and stuff it into the remaining gaps in your bag. To get a little more flatness down, squeeze some of those rolled clothes into packing cubes.

Person carrying a shirt over an open suitcase

Fold or roll? It depends on the clothes you’re dealing with.

Silwell/Getty Images

5. Preparing for TSA

To bring a safety handbag, you’ll need easy access to your electronics and liquids so you can fit it on the conveyor belt. Stick it to the top layer or outside pocket of your bag (or your personalized item). Otherwise, you’ll have to shuffle your perfect packs while searching for your laptop, stopping the line behind you in the process.

6. Put the most important things in your handbag

When you check your luggage, you You risk losing it. That’s why your bag or personal items are the perfect place for hard-to-replace essentials: your wallet, contact lenses, eyeglasses, medications, electronics, or anything you hate to be stuck without for a few days.

7. Leave plenty of room for maneuvering for luggage if necessary

Any chance to hit the shops or bring back some souvenirs? As you load your luggage, keep in mind any extra space you may need on the way back. You don’t want to end up in a situation where you bought, say, a nice pair of pants at your destination, but your bag is too stuffed, so consider sacrificing a few other belongings in order to make them fit. (True story.)

Home pre-vacation checklist

Doing some quick chores before you leave will help ensure that you come back to find your home exactly as you left it. Verify The complete list of household chores before the holidays.

wall outlet

It’s important to unplug your appliances while you’re gone because some of them drain electricity even when they’re turned off.

Sarah Teo / CNET

8. Unplug your electronic devices

This will lower your energy bill and reduce the risk of electrical fires. before you leave , Unplug your deviceslamps, chargers, routers, computers, and televisions.

9. Lock your windows

In addition to triple-checking all of your doors, be sure to secure the windows, which are the next easiest entry point for thieves. Better yet, a smart lock It can alert you when a window is open and allow you to lock it remotely.

10. Put timers on your lights

To make it feel like you are at home, connect lighting timers to your electrical outlets or install the remote control smart bulb. Set your interior lights to turn on and off as normal, and set your exterior lights to turn on at night.

11. Keep your plants alive when you are away

Do not judge them to wither in your absence. You can design a drip system out of a plastic water bottle by filling it with water, drilling a few holes towards the top, turning them over and tucking them into the soil deep enough to cover the holes. For larger decanters, wine bottles filled with water work well. (There is no need to drill any additional drain holes: just leave the bottle open.) For more ideas, check out Our guide to helping your plants thrive while you’re away.

The plastic water bottle was turned upside down and stuck in the soil next to a potted plant

With this plant-friendly hack, there’s no need to spend money on watering balls.

Chris Parker/CNET

12. Stay calm

maybe Keep the summer heat out of your home without running out of your electric bill. Close your umbrellas if you’re in a sunny area, and run a dehumidifier if the local weather calls for it. Set the thermostat 5 degrees higher than you normally keep, or get smart thermostat which you can set to vacation mode.

Find out how your phone will work abroad

If you keep your phone’s default settings while traveling abroad, it won’t work the same way. At least, it’s not without your service provider charging huge international fees to your phone bill.

13. Sort the status of your SIM card

To get the full range of calls, SMS and data, you will need to get another SIM card that is supported abroad. Some modern phones have eSIM technology that lets you do it digitallyHowever, many still require you to physically remove your SIM and replace it with another one.

SIM card tray pop up from phone

With eSIM support becoming more and more popular with newer phones, physical cards will soon become a thing of the past.

Jason Cipriani/CNET

14. Know where to get a SIM card if needed

International airports usually have self-service counters or kiosks where you can buy prepaid local SIM cards once you arrive at your destination. But if you’d rather find out in advance and have a proper service when your plane lands, CNET previously recommended KnowRoamingwhich now offers eSIMs.

15. Let your contacts know what’s going on

With a new phone number comes a potential problem that you might want to anticipate. If you don’t want to deal with your contacts’ text messages from a number they don’t recognize, tell them you’re going abroad and tell them to reach you via apps like Facebook Messenger or WhatsApp, which use data only.

16. Resolve two-factor authentication hurdles

You may need to access services or accounts that require two-factor authentication to sign in. Before you go, make sure you set the authentication method to email instead of your phone number.

Stash your money safely while traveling

Your mind is often in a million places at once while you’re traveling, so it’s all too easy to let your guard down and lose your money. With a little advance planning, you can significantly reduce the possibility of wasting your money or pickpocketing.

17. Don’t be an easy target

Keep your money in a money belt or fanny pack, which makes stealing more difficult than in a handbag or the outer pocket of a backpack.

Money and passport stole from the bag

Fanny packs and money belts keep your money within easy reach (but not for pickpockets).

granddriver/Getty Images

18. Hide your money

Avoid putting all your eggs in one basket…or all your money in one place. Put an extra card in your handbag or some small bills in your second wallet. That way, if you lose a single bag or purse, you won’t be broke. (Just be sure to remember all of your hiding places; You may track it in a password-protected note on your phone.)

Looking for more travel tips before your next vacation? These features on Google Maps and Google Flights It will help you save money and find your way around. over here Seven tools we recommend packingalong with Our employees’ favorite carry-on baggage. Plus, Elevate your travel photography with these 12 pro tips.

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