Things About Travel That Stress Me Out

I love travel and the whole reason this blog exists is that I wanted this blog to be chronicle of all my travels but it ended up becoming so much more. I travelled extensively pre-COVID both solo and with family and friends. But travel comes with its own set of anxiety causing issues for me. Here are 10 things about travel that stress me out so much –

Photo by Anugrah Lohiya on Pexels.com
  1. Airport security check – I NEVER have anything even remotely suspicious on me but boy does going through security check especially in a different country stress me out.
  2. Tipping people – Just the act of stopping a porter and handing him money – causes me so much anxiety. Do I tip him when he is at the door or when is done dropping off my luggage? Do I roll up the money or hand over an open note? What if I am tipping too much and thereafter will have to over tip all hotel staff? What if I am tipping too less and now he’ll talk behind my back with other hotel staff? What if I drop the money before I hand it over? AAAAAAAHHHH – THE STRESS!!!
  3. Travel anxiety – I have general travel anxiety. The night before a trip, I’ll spend tossing and turning – making up crazy situations in my head about what all could go wrong!
  4. Not finding ample public transport – I hate when my public transport options are limited. Though I love walking around new places, you do need good transport to get you around to see places further away from where you are living. Plus having a good transport system eases the tension if you are travelling solo. Depending on just cabs can get very stressful especially if you can’t get one at night.
  5. Using public washrooms/toilets – I don’t want to get into the details but public toilets FREAK me out. I avoid using them at all costs but what do you do when you have a 10 hour layover before a 8 hour long flight? *giving me the heebee-jeebees just thinking about it*
  6. Immigration/Visa Check – When you are about to enter a new country and they are scrutinizing your “third world country” passport and visa – ARGHHHH. (“What is your purpose of visiting XXXX?” “Uhm.. I have a tourist visa so maybe I am here to boost your economy with my hard earned money?“)
  7. Applying for a visa – The amount of documentation required to get a US/Schengen visa (haven’t applied for other “first world” country visas but I am sure it must be similar) – makes you almost feel like you’re a criminal and you might be rejected for the smallest documentation error. For my solo trip to Spain I had to submit like 200 documents confirming I worked with a top global bank and that they were ‘allowing’ me leave to go but I still had a home as well as a job in India that I would be returning to with enough bank balance. ARGH! (So unfair that a person with a “strong” passport with no home and no job can go just about anywhere.)
  8. Planning a trip for multiple people – This stresses me out so much especially when people are flying in from different cities and I need to figure that perfect time for everyone to reach together. Also, making sure there is something fun for everyone during the trip is just too much work for me. I love my solo travels so much.
  9. Flight/Train delays/cancellations – Especially when you have connecting flights – even a slight delay can cause so much of problems to your whole plan.
  10. Overnight bus journeys – I’m not young enough to enjoy overnight bus journeys anymore. I absolutely despise them – they are uncomfortable, I am unable to sleep and the washroom situation just makes it WORSE. Add to it a crying baby or someone eating some overtly smelling food or someone talking loudly on their phone all night and it is just not happening. I did an overnight bus journey with my entire family last year (pre-COVID) and I regret putting my parents through that torture. (I got late in booking train tickets πŸ˜₯ )

Indian train journey

What are some things that stress you out about travel? Do you relate to my list? Also December travel plans, anyone?

PS: I have mentioned “first world” and “third world” in quotes because boy, do we need to revise the definitions of these two terms.

PPS: Check out my other recent posts –

44 Comments Add yours

  1. I haven’t been on a plane for long now, mainly thanks to covid, but the security check stressed me out so much! I just don’t like being looked at suspiciously and being touched everywhere.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Happy Panda says:

      Same. Thankfully in India it isn’t a physical touch check but I got patted down checked while travelling in Europe and it made me so uncomfortable. πŸ™ˆ

      Liked by 1 person

  2. bosssybabe says:

    Omg travelling, especially on planes, really stresses me out. I once traveled on my own as a teen and thank goodness that was a direct flight but man, I don’t know how some ppl fly… My husband is very adept with directions and all things requiring brain power lol including the ordeal of flying… I don’t know how ppl just know what to do, where to go, where to line up, what connecting gate to find and how to get there as quickly as they do.. It amazes me all the time!! But also stresses me out lol

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Happy Panda says:

      As someone who has travelled solo a lot, you eventually get used to it. But I used to feel extremely lost in the beginning too. One of the times my brother was flying alone and sat down near his gate and was listening to music and missed the gate change announcement and missed his flight. πŸ™ˆ

      Liked by 1 person

      1. bosssybabe says:

        Oh noooo that sucks!!

        Like

  3. Nehal Jain says:

    That Indian train journey pic reminds me of JA SIMRAN JA 🀣🀣

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Happy Panda says:

      Hahahaha. It’s inspired by this Russian photographer who has this series called ‘follow me to’. His photographs are ofcourse insanely pretty. πŸ˜›

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Traveling is very stressful. I get so much anxiety the night before and day of…..and I’ve never traveled alone. I can’t even imagine going somewhere far solo. I would get lost forever if I was placed in the world by myself 😬

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Happy Panda says:

      Same!! I spend the night before tossing in bed imagining all the worst case situations. πŸ™ˆ
      I love solo travel and definitely recommend it especially to all women. Europe is a great place to solo travel, if you ever decide to give it a try. ☺️

      Like

  5. Zainab says:

    I’m only a teen, so I don’t usually plan trips – so I never realised the stress! I do agree, that especially during the pandemic, using public restrooms really stress me out too! Hope you enjoy the holidays!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Happy Panda says:

      Planning trips is the worst part of travel. Happy holidays to you too. ❀️

      Liked by 1 person

  6. tanvibytes says:

    I haven’t traveled in a couple years now, but one of the silliest things I got stressed about is my passport. Every few minutes I have to check πŸ˜³πŸ˜‚. Now because of the pandemic, restrooms, close proximity and food situations are more worrisome. I’m still really excited that travel is picking up again (I’m hoping everyone continues to stay safe!)

    Like

  7. Oh my gosh, tipping people stresses me out too! I always wonder if I’m supposed to be tipping someone, and what’s a reasonable amount to tip πŸ˜…

    Like

  8. winteroseca says:

    I get panic attacks at security checks and border patrol. Never got over it. I have this book on Third Culture Kids though and whenever I am around an official I hold it with the title out. One security officer did a double take! It’s a great mind trick! I don’t use porters at all. Sometimes, checking baggage can be quite stressful. My Dad had a couple of weird experiences when he came to Calgary to help me with my Mum. He didn’t get a boarding zone on his ticket or a seat number. Plus, he was randomly selected for COVID-19 testing on arrival. I had to admire the fact that my Dad just threw everything he needed in a large backpack and took off when my Mum and I really needed him. That’s thanks to all our moving around the world! Respect to him!

    Like

  9. Thank you for this post. Travel is very glorified as this universally wonderful experience, but there are a lot of elements that are incredibly stressful and/or annoying (does anyone actually enjoy airport security). I like travel, but there are definitely things I find really stresseful

    Like

  10. Emily M says:

    Travelling stresses me out so much! I recently found a virtual travel site called Heygo and I’m loving being able to explore the world from home, learning about the places from tour guides and take photos too πŸ’›

    Like

  11. petespringerauthor says:

    The thing that bothers me the most about traveling is simply not feeling like I’m in control. There are so many things beyond our direction(weather, timing, availability, crowds). Traveling was hard enough before Covid, and now there are even more concerns. I wish I was more easygoing about the whole thing instead of stressing about things that happen randomly.

    I like to fly, but my wife is a reluctant traveler. She tolerates planes even though she doesn’t feel comfortable and hates being in the car for any length of time.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Happy Panda says:

      I so agree – the number of things not in our control while travelling actually causes the anxiety.

      I hate car travel too – like I just can’t do long car travel. Flights fascinate me still, at my age, I’m always excited to go to the airport. πŸ™ˆ

      Liked by 1 person

  12. SamSahana says:

    We can actually make our weak passport stronger by having a lot of visa stamps but I GET PANIC ATTACKS. Even the slightest of details are regarded with big googly ball eyes! I have a messed up past so I have faced visa rejection, even passport rejection! Anything to do with documentation traumatises me. Your experiences are so relatable, although you panic quite easily for just about anything lol. That comes with social anxiety Ofcourse πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Happy Panda says:

      I thought the same, since my passport has a decent amount of stamps – but the visa on arrival woman in Thailand (of all the places) was so suspicious that it was infuriating. She literally asked us to show her that we have cash on us whereas the goras before us were let through without one question. And this is was a 2 week long trip in which I had been to Singapore – Malaysia – Cambodia and finally landed in Thailand. 😐

      Liked by 1 person

      1. SamSahana says:

        Ngl, the goras do enjoy their privileges despite being the ones to make others suffer in the past πŸ€·β€β™€οΈ Better suspect them more, coz what if they invade your country?🀭

        Like

  13. I agree…many steps of travel are stressful….but the travel at the end of it is fun….so forget the stress and travel…..

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Happy Panda says:

      Yesss! True – it makes it worth all the stress. 😊

      Like

  14. vaniheart says:

    I agree travelling is stressful like the beginning part is just so much filled with anxiety πŸ˜… 😳
    And i agree about the security check…
    A slight expression change on the face of security people and i go like “god i hope they didn’t find my gun…and then i was like “WHATTT GUNNN YOU IDIOT’
    🀣 πŸ˜‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Happy Panda says:

      Hahaha sameeee. I’m like what if they find drugs on me planted by the cute guy that smiled at me in the Starbucks queue. 🀣🀣
      Also, so good to see you back here. ❀️

      Like

  15. I’m with you on each of these. I would add just taking public transport. I get very stressed, afraid that I’ll miss a stop or take the wrong connection. This anxiety nearly ruined my solo time in Japan, the last country on my 70-day solo trip around the world, right before COVID in 2019. Overnight bus rides? Nope. No way.

    Like

  16. I don’t travel much but I could feel the stress in this postπŸ˜‚πŸ˜….
    Especially the airport security check. It’s so unnecessarily stressful. Like I know that I don’t have anything that I’m not supposed to but I still get scaredπŸ€¦β€β™€οΈ.

    Like

  17. Nice Post! Yeah, travelling in trains stresses me out.
    Loved your blog. I started following it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Happy Panda says:

      Thank you! 😊
      Trains are extremely stressful – especially using the washroom 😒

      Liked by 1 person

  18. Public toilets are a night mare. Unless im too pressed, I never prefer to use them. They give me so much anxiety especially now during covid.

    Like

  19. Public toilets gives me anxiety.
    Unless im absolutely pressed, I never prefer to use them especially now during covid.

    Like

  20. Shelly DS says:

    Hahaha the airport security gets me every time! I also hate having to strip down for them to deem me fit to pass through. I avoid layovers in Ethiopia because they make you take off shoes, belts, jewelry … it makes me feel so awkward basically undressing in the middle of the room. And I also get pre-flight jitters, and it makes my tummy get upset, then I travel with tummy issues and hate having to use the bathroom πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ€¦πŸΎβ€β™€οΈ

    Like

  21. Mirna says:

    I share so many of these anxities! Especially the ones about going through security and relying on unreliable transport. I always have a phobia of getting stranded somewhere although that’s an irrational fear. Travel’s not easy, but it’s so worth it!

    Like

  22. Jevannel says:

    I enjoyed reading this!

    Like

  23. Maha says:

    Traveling comes with its own baggage of inconvienience’s but after completing the travel when we browse through the pictures that we took at the destination, it definitely brings that totally happy smile with a sense of accomplishment, leaving us with the feel ‘that was a great tour’ πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Happy Panda says:

      Definitely!!! I just wish we could teleport from one place to another and not have to use visas and passports!!!

      Liked by 1 person

  24. Great article! Thanks for posting.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Happy Panda says:

      Thank you! ☺️

      Like

  25. ⭐ says:

    Third-world visa part is so relatable! Losing luggage is probably one of my greatest fears.

    Like

    1. Sahana Kulur says:

      As an Indian I can totally relate to you! That 50 page of documents for a schengen Visa and a long interviews – Tired

      Like

  26. Sahana Kulur says:

    Totally relatable – running in the airport for a connecting flight gives me headache! I have another peculiar stress in travelling. I am always scared to use lavatory immediately after a person uses it before me – i fear I catch some infection. I wait for 30 minutes and then go. Meanwhile, another person rushes to the lavatory before me. So I sit again with my bladder bursting

    Like

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