Prepare your workload in advance
It’s never fun to spend the 48 hours prior to departure trying to cram in a fortnight’s worth of work. Let colleagues and clients know you’ll be going away well in advance so you can manage expectations. Last minute issues will inevitably crop up so try to keep the day before departure clear for tying up any loose ends.
Don’t travel on a Friday night
Whilst it can seem smart to travel on a Friday night to minimise time off work, it will feel far from a good idea when you’re rushing across town with half of London. Travelling earlier in the day or mid-week is not only less stressful, it’s often cheaper too.
Get to the airport in plenty of time
Anything that avoids a mad dash from security to the gate is a good idea. Get to the airport early, relax at the bar, enjoy the restaurants and browse the shops. Why wait until you’re at your destination to get into the holiday mood?
Take advantage of concierge services
Whether it’s baggage porters to collect and transfer your luggage, VIP valet parking or the option of being first or last to board the plane, airport concierge services are there to make your life easier.
Don’t check your emails
Easier said than done, but it’s a strategy you should at least try to adopt. Tell colleagues to text if something is really urgent (people are a lot less likely to disturb a holiday via text), be strict in your Out of Office wording that you’re unavailable not “checking intermittently” and if you absolutely must check in, stick to once a day.
Avoid the over-enthusiastic holiday itinerary
Travel guides are great for inspiration but you don’t have to follow them to the letter. Choose the key things you want to do and approach them with leisure. Oh and if you want to do absolutely nothing? Go for it.
Opt for lo-fi entertainment
iPads and Kindles are all very well, but there’s a reason a simple deck of cards has stood the test of time.
Stay off social media
Holiday smugness is understandable, but does constant snapping and uploading really make a holiday better? Or does it just remind you of everything going on back home and stop you from switching off? Take the envy-inducing pics but upload them once you’re home.
Embrace the notepad
If things do pop into your head while you’re away, just scribble them down to deal with on your return rather than fire up the laptop. Holidays can provide great sources of inspiration which are worth noting, but good ideas can always wait.
Don’t plan too much for your return home
Ease the back-to-work dread by keeping your diary as clear as possible for the first couple of days. Plan mini catch-ups with colleagues to get up to speed and give yourself time to sift through that inbox you bravely resisted checking on holiday