After shopping all day with a friend who, although travelling to Thailand tomorrow (for six weeks!), hasn’t even packed and reliving the pain of my first parent-less holiday last year with my now ex boyfriend, I realised how un-relaxing holiday planning really is.

I mean I cant really talk, i’m flying in 6 days and only just remembered that yesterday, but honestly i’ve always been a very put-together, prepared person. I’ll have my travel documents and essential in flight material and won’t even be worried that i’ve forgot something because I don’t need to be – I may sound like i’m lying; but I managed to do it all for TWO people last year and came out in victory.

Regardless, today’s excursion made me realise that there’s so much to do before you can get on that dreaded flight and finally arrive to somewhere hopefully relaxing. Before packing, you have to buy and buying means spending (a word no student likes to hear because that just means your overdraft is taking another massive hit). But before you get upset at the thought, these are five top tips i’ve came to use and think would help the lost ones of you out there;

  1. MAKE A LIST – just make a bloody list. It doesn’t make you similar to an OAP going on a weekly shopping trip, nor does it mean that you have OCD – it’ll just prevent the panic attacks. Take your time and don’t do it an hour before leaving or it’s just futile.
  2. Don’t just pack once – thinking that you can buy everything then just pack it up a few days before isn’t the right way to go. I’ve found packing makes you realise just what you’re missing; reaching for the toothpaste might just make you realise you’ve got no shampoo, and so-on.
  3. Docs – Travel documents are essential! Get them all packed up in the same place and double-check you have everything. If you need to online check-in, do it as soon as you can and the same goes for printing (and it can’t hurt to have two copies).
  4. TRAVEL -this is the one everyone forgets, and I don’t just mean getting on the plane. Transfers, trains, the works – if you’re like me and you live in Leeds but are travelling from Manchester, get these trains booked ASAP. Remember – the earlier you book the cheaper and then that’s one less thing to worry about.
  5. Utilise the airport’s website – there is so much detail on there, sizes for travel bags, timetables and FAQ’s. Take some time to study that booking email and visit their website, believe me it will help!


The worst thing you can do is stress, one thing I was in awe from from my Thailand-bound friend was her ability to keep calm – whether that be because she had a list on her phone (i told you) or not. People always tend to dread holidays because of the preparation that comes with them, but it really doesn’t need to be that hard.

I guess that’s why i’m taking the minimal approach, and by that I mean ignoring the fact i’m going and instead travelling god knows how many miles away from Manchester Airport and instead having a weekend bank-holiday in Durham with friends – 2 days before travel.

But as I said before, i’m very confident in my holiday prep. If you doubt me, i’m sure my travel companion will be quick to let you in on my (if any) mistakes!



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