Planning a trip can be stressful. Especially long-term trips. There are so many things to figure out for the time you’ll be away and many more things to get in order so when you come back home, nothing has fallen apart or gone haywire! Getting things lined up and having the right plans made can make your trip significantly easier and less stressful.
At the bank
If you’ll be gone for more than a month, chances are you’ll have to pay bills of some sort. If you haven’t set up online payments for your bills, try to get it set up a month or two before you leave so you know it works right.
Make sure your bank knows you’ll be gone (otherwise your credit and/or debit cards might be frozen when they see it’s being used outside of its usual area).
Set up your account to be accessible online if it isn’t already so you can get to it from abroad if you need.
Take time to figure out your budget, the exchange rate and the best way for you to get your money abroad (ATM withdrawals to get cash or just using credit cards to pay).
If you have plants or animals that need to be taken care of, think about what will need to be done in the time period you’ll be gone. If you water your plants every 3 days, make a note so you can tell a house sitter or friend how to care for them. If you give your dog medicine every morning, be sure to record it.
Maybe your thermostat breaks regularly and needs to be reset. Writing down what you do to fix the problem as you’re doing it can be a lot simpler than trying to remember each button press from memory. Even things as simple as writing down that the front door key is difficult to open can make a friend or house sitter’s job easier.
It’s amazing how many little things can get missed if you leave them to the last minute, so do it ahead of time.
At the office
Be sure coworkers and clients know you’ll be gone. Decide if they can get in touch with you for emergencies and how they should do it (can they call, only use email or do you not want to be bothered at all?).
Making the choice to leave work behind can be stressful for some people and liberating for others. Either way, realize that the business will not fall apart without you and if your time off was approved, your desk will still be there for you when you return.
You’re taking a vacation from your job, so leave work behind for a while!
It can be really hard to leave but taking care of things to simplify your exit can ease your mind while you’re gone. You don’t want to be thinking about your bills that need to be paid, your dog being fed or coworkers needing your help when you’re away. This is vacation time that you earned and you deserve! Enjoy it!