When loved ones embark on their holiday travel ways, we say, “Have a safe trip!” For those daring enough to travel during the holidays, we should revise this cliche with the more appropriate, “Have a sane trip!” Nothing tests one’s sanity like the endless lines and delays involved with airports during the holiday travel season. It is the busiest time for travel, and if you have to be one of the many people passing through the airports this holiday season, that can make it the worst time for travel. Knowing this, why not take your wellness into consideration before you get to the airport? Save yourself some anguish by planning ahead. Remember to pack a few stress relieving essentials and strategize how to remain active in your wellness at the airport. These tips will help you to stay calm and healthy, so you can show up to your holiday destination with your sanity in tact!
Take Advantage of Airport Amenities
While some airports are further advanced in the shift toward wellness-inspired holiday travel, most airports are equipped with lounges or quiet business areas. A couple of airports, like Chicago’s O’Hara International and San Francisco International, even provide quiet rooms for yoga and meditation. Getting to the airport early can relieve the anxiety of rushing to make your flight, and with amenities like quiet rooms for yoga, you can remove the sense that you are waiting by amplifying your experience with exercise. In addition to a yoga space, Burlington International in Vermont features a picnic area on its manicured roof where you can soak in some sun while you snack pre-flight. Phoenix Sky Harbor International in Arizona has expanded on the fitness room idea by combining it with an essential Arizona activity—hiking. Their nearly mile long indoor fitness trail exhibits the beautiful Arizona skyline with views of their mountains, parks and preserves. If you’re flying out of an airport without these conveniences, set up a space in a quiet, lesser used gate.
Set Up a Modified “Sacred Space”
It can be overwhelming to have to share a space with so many other travelers, especially when all of the seats at your gate are spoken for and you have to stand until your flight. Instead of feeling herded into a progressively cranky crowd, create a sacred space of your own. Lay down a blanket in a less populated area without a lot of foot traffic. Define this area by setting down things you have brought that represent home to you. A coloring book can be a fun, meditative activity to help you pass the time. Popping off your shoes, and burying your nose in your favorite book is another way to get comfy in an otherwise uncomfortable situation. You can also try placing a few healing crystals in the corner of the blanket to bring you an energy of renewal and ease. Some of the best crystals for traveling are: Selenite, to retain your light and block out negative energy, citrine, for radiating joy, Amethyst, for stress-relief and protection, Moonstone, the “traveler’s stone” for good luck, and Shungite, for protection from energy draining people and x-ray machines. Once set up with snacks, items from home, and a couple of activities, this space will be ideal for shutting your eyes in silent meditation, simple yoga, snacking and relaxing before your flight.
Bring Healthy Snacks
Stock up on healthy treats before you get to the airport so that you don’t have to choose between spending $10 on a basic fruit cup or less on a Cinnabon that you’ll regret later. Airport-friendly options that you can stuff in your bag and feel good about later, include: dried cranberries, almonds, walnuts, hummus dip and pita chips and a fruit tray with an egg or cheese for protein.
You don’t have to wear sweatpants, but you do have to make sure that what you are wearing is comfortable. Wear shoes you can walk around in and non-wrinkling clothes that you can stretch out and convert easily if you get hot or cold. Bring a blanket that you can sit on if all the seats are taken, or snuggle up in if the airport gets a little chilly.
Bring Essential Oil
One small bottle of essential oil passes the airport regulation of no liquids over 3 oz. and will be a life saver in overcrowded gates. Anywhere that has a lot of people in a limited space is going to get a little musky, especially if those people and air around them are staying stagnant. Combat the stagnant air with essential oil. Take a whiff of your citrus oil when you have your spot among the crowd. This will rejuvenate your energy and release a wave joy. Ask for cup of hot water from a coffee and tea vendor in the airport, and pour ten drops of eucalyptus oil in it. Bring the steam up to your face to bask in the revitalizing vapors of eucalyptus. This scent is particularly helpful as a stress reliever, in clearing nasal passages, for cleansing the air, and in combating sinus allergies and colds. Peppermint essential oil is also great for traveling because it can help with beginning headaches. Apply a touch of peppermint oil to the neck or the wrist to re-energize yourself and unclog the sinuses. Plus, there’s the added bonus in keeping with the holiday spirit!