Ways to Stay Safe and Comfortable While Traveling
23 Nov 2020
Traveling is exciting, as we have a hard time falling asleep the night before a big trip, whether we travel for business or pleasure. However, traveling is tiresome, especially if there is jetlag involved. There is nothing exciting about arriving at your destination fatigued, so you cannot enjoy your summer holiday, for instance. That’s why you need to learn how to stay comfortable (and safe) on your travels.
Sleeping like a baby
Sleep deprivation is one of the downsides of air travel and we can never seem to get used to it. If the journey lasts several hours or you travel overnight, then it’s a good idea to get some sleep during the uneventful journey (hardly any sights are visible in pitch blackness).
Simply dozing off in your seat isn’t very comfortable, especially if the bus or the airplane is packed. Your carry-on luggage should contain an inflatable neck pillow to prevent neck pain. Furthermore, it can easily be deflated so it takes up less space in your luggage.
Apart from the neck pillow, equip yourself with an eye mask to help you go to sleep quicker. Masks help fool our brain that it’s dark outside, so serotonin will help us go to sleep faster. Even playing some relaxing music can help us doze off but it should be played quietly.
When traveling alone, ask the passenger sitting next to you to wake you up before you arrive.
Selecting the right suitcase
When traveling on an airplane, you should buy a suitcase that will fit perfectly inside the overhead compartment and allow you to pack the maximum allow weight (usually around 8 kilos). Furthermore, the bags and suitcases you bring along need to be compatible.
For instance, the rucksack should feature a strap on the back that allows it to be attached to the suitcase’s handles when extended. This will make moving across the platforms or the terminal much easier and faster.
It is our advice to buy suitcases that are made from lightweight materials that can bend. Baggage handlers aren’t particularly careful when loading suitcases on the plane; a rigid suitcase made from plastic can easily break when thrown onto a conveyor.
Also, buy travel bags that are of good quality, so they can withstand a lot of wear and tear. You don’t want to invest in a new suitcase every couple of months because the handles broke or the lock got jammed. In terms of safety, combination locks are considered safer than the lock-and-key ones.
Wear comfortable clothing
We’ve mentioned earlier that modern passenger seats are a bit of a tight squeeze, so avoid wearing tight clothing, as it will only worsen the situation. Instead of thick, baggy pants or tight jeans, opt for leggings (for women) or a tracksuit (for men).
These types of clothing increase your mobility and allow a gap between you and the passenger sitting next to you. Another benefit of comfy sportswear is improved safety, as you are able to leave your seat faster and move quickly in case of unforeseen circumstances, such as a crash.
In terms of safety, footwear is also important, as it’s impossible to run in heels or heavy boots. Not only will such footwear slow you down in case of an emergency but your ankle will start to hurt after a couple of hours in the sitting position.
“Should I travel if I’m pregnant?”
Bus operators’ and airlines’ websites are full of questions posed by pregnant women whether it’s safe for them to travel. The short answer is: Yes, it is safe to travel when pregnant. However, you should make the extra effort to be safe and comfortable.
For example, bring an adaptable neck massager instead of a pillow we spoke about earlier. It will help you relax by stimulating blood circulation and alleviating neck pain. Furthermore, you need to stay hydrated, so bring a reusable water bottle or ask the flight attendant to bring you a glass of water.
Kids on board
Even after you get children the special travel regime doesn’t end there. Parents need to make sure their children are happy and full when they board a train, a bus, or a plane. Otherwise, they might ruin the trip for their fellow passengers if their kids start scheming for ice-cream or a soda.
On long journeys, it is best if children can sleep them through. Again, pillows and neck cushions are the right way to go. As an alternative, kids should be given tablets, so they will remain calm while they watch their favourite cartoons.
If you’re the one behind the wheel, then be sure to take breaks more often than you would normally do, since there are children on board. Whether it’s visiting the toilet or grabbing a bite to eat, kids are needier travelers than adults. For instance, when they feel cold, their parents have to cover them with a blanket they packed before leaving.
Public Wi-Fi networks aren’t particularly safe
Staying safe on your travels isn’t only about physical safety. With the advent of online social media platforms, we all lead virtual lives as well, so it’s worth the effort to stay safe in cyberspace as well. One example are public Wi-Fi networks we are eager to connect to after we arrive or during a rest stop.
However, these networks are easy prey for hackers who can steal out personal data through unprotected connections. Mobile Internet is costly but the alternative should be safe, encrypted networks found at restaurants and hotels that you get the password for.
Download everything in advance
Another great way to stay safe online is to download everything before leaving the house. From videos, across your favorite songs to important work documents and e-books, you can download everything at your home computer and then upload it to the laptop, smartphone, or tablet.
This way, you will never feel the need to go online, unless you want to post travel pics. Needless to say, turn off the location for safety reasons, as you don’t want anyone tracking your activities in real-time. Also, use earphones on public transport, so you don’t disturb other passengers.
When scheduling your trip, make sure you arrive every with at least 10 minutes to spare. Yes, this means that you’ll have to get up early to catch an earlier bus but you will save yourself a lot of stressful situations.
Namely, you are compromising safety every time you rush things. Just imagine what would happen if entered the wrong taxi in a hurry or boarded the wrong bus. You could easily end up mugged or on the other side of town, ruining your trip.
That extra time window of just 10 minutes ensures you get everything right the first time!
Stay clear of crowds
Estimates put the number of annual international arrivals at 1.4 billion people but the exact amount is higher. In such a setting, it is hard to avoid crowds but you should try your best. When traveling abroad, you expose yourself to infectious diseases and all sorts of viruses, such as notorious COVID-19 but falling ill is out of option. When you cannot physically distance from others, at least wear a face cloth.
Having gone through the 9 points listed above, we hope you now realize that traveling comfortably and safely go hand in hand. From getting a neck massager to avoiding unencrypted public wireless networks, there are countless ways to stay safe while on the road.