Want to relax on your next trip? Make sure you do these five things.

It’s finally here. You’ve spent weeks planning, often thousands of pounds booking, and hours of time preparing to go on your long-anticipated summer holiday… but you just can’t seem to embrace it and relax. We’ve all been there. As a nation, we spend two days of our holiday on average worrying about issues at home; whether it is checking in on your work emails or worrying about the very situations you’ve gone on holiday to avoid! This guide to relaxing on holiday will help you to sit back and enjoy your break.

1. Before you leave

The reason many of us just can’t seem to switch off on holiday is because of work. Of course, we spend the majority of our time in the office, so it’s only natural to feel out-of-sorts when leaving it all behind completely for two weeks. Before you leave work for your trip, try to tie up as many loose ends as possible, set an out of office responder, and ensure you’ve got people in place to cover for any problems that might arise in your absence. Set aside some time during your first day back to catch up so you have peace of mind that you can take care of everything when you return.

2. Flight times

If you’re off on a family holiday, the time of day you set off can make a difference between starting your holiday on a high and starting it with high stress levels. Don’t book a flight at 5am if it means the entire family will spend the first day and a half catching up on sleep. If you are able to, it is worth spending extra on an afternoon flight.

3. Get adequate travel cover

There’s nothing that spoils a relaxing holiday more than worry. Ensuring that you have reliable travel cover to help you with anything from big emergencies to small problems will leave you with one less thing to worry about. If you go on a long-distance holiday, medical costs can run into the thousands without insurance cover ($30,000 for a week in a US hospital!) and minor annoyances like lost passports are made less stressful when the cost is covered.

4. Leave guilt at the airport

When we’re on holiday, a lot of us actually forget that we’re supposed to be taking a break. For most of us, this flash in the pan relaxation comes only once a year, so we shouldn’t waste time worrying about drinking too much at lunch (within reason of course) or consuming too many calories. Embrace the holiday spirit, have that third cocktail with lunch, and try as much local food as you can eat.

5. Don’t over schedule

It’s sensible to make a list of ‘must-see’ or ‘must-do’ activities and excursions that you don’t want to miss out on while on holiday. Often, we only visit a destination once in a lifetime. However, what isn’t advisable when looking to minimise stress on holiday is to over book excursions. Make sure that you limit the amount of activities you plan during this short space of time, as having each day jam-packed with activities will ensure that your relaxing trip turns into more hard work!