***Collaborative post***

As Covid restrictions are gradually being lifted around the world, the tourism industry is taking off once again. People are finally able to enjoy the freedom to travel to far-off destinations and visit their loved ones around the globe.

But after two years of lockdowns, social distancing, and self-isolation, it’s understandable that you might be feeling a little anxious about going on vacation. You spent the majority of the pandemic avoiding large crowds and remaining two meters apart from other people, and now you’re faced with the prospect of an endless airport queue and a longhaul flight on a cramped plane. These concerns will be heighted if you are vulnerable, or live with someone who is. 

But we need to find ways to live with this disease in society, and you shouldn’t let it prevent you from living your life to the fullest. It is perfectly possible to travel safely, as long as you take precautions and remain vigilant. Getting comfortable with big crowds will take some time, but eventually you will start to feel less anxious and enjoy your well-deserved vacation.

To help you adventure with confidence, here are five tips to cope with post-Covid travel anxiety.

Ease into it

Sometimes jumping straight into an uncomfortable situation is the best way to adapt, but you do risk putting yourself off travel for good. A wiser course of action may be to start small and ease yourself in. Begin with a travel setting in which you are more comfortable, such as a weekend break in your own country. You can then start working up to more tourist-heavy areas before taking the plunge and booking a flight abroad.

Travel off peak

Most people travel in the summer holidays, so you can avoid large crowds at the airport by traveling at less popular times. Take a holiday at the start or end of the year, and consider a night time flight that won’t be full to the brim. This way, you can acclimate yourself to the experience of traveling without being overwhelmed by other people.

Stay safe

Just because no one else is wearing a mask, that doesn’t mean you don’t have to. Rules and regulations are different depending on where you are in the world, but whatever the Covid laws you can keep yourself safe by wearing a face covering in public and taking a bottle of hand sanitiser with you.

Plan ahead

Even before Covid, traveling could be a logistical nightmare full of stress. But with many Covid regulations still in place, it is even more confusing and anxiety-inducing. The rules you need to adhere to will differ depending on your destination, so you should make sure you are aware of the forms you need to fill out and the travel guidance for the country you’re visiting. 

Use calming techniques

You may have a long flight in store, and the last thing you want is a panic attack at 30,00 feet. Come equipped with some tools and techniques for calming yourself when anxiety hits. This might be relaxing music, medications, or a journal. Find out what works for you, and use it to your advantage.

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