We’ve all been there. You’re all packed, you drag yourself out of bed at the crack of dawn for that early morning flight, brush your teeth in zombie-mode, and head to the airport still half-asleep. By the time you’re fully awake you’re already sitting the gate about to board, and you start wondering: “Did I forget something?”
Well, worry no more! Here is your one-stop checklist for early-morning travel days (or, really, any travel days) so you can start relaxing the moment you close your door.
The Week Before:
- Pause newspaper delivery! Depending on where you live and what your mailbox situation is, a bunch of newspapers piling up might be a dead giveaway that no one is home, so either arrange to have them stopped for the duration of your trip, or as a neighbor or friend to collect them while you’re gone.
- Pay all bills that are going to be due while you’re away! This one’s pretty self-explanatory
The Night Before:
- Pack up! Packing the night before means a more streamlined travel morning. Pro tip: write a list of things you’re likely to forget (phone charging cord, anyone?) and save it on your phone. That way you can go through it in the morning to make sure nothing gets left behind (things like a hat, headphones, and your toothbrush).
- Download your ticket digitally! Save yourself the headache of keeping track of a bunch of loose tickets, and save them to your phone!
- Share a (digital) key! By sharing a key with a neighbor or house-sitter they water your plants, feed your pets, or collect your mail, and you know your home is in good hands. (If the key you share is a digital one, you don’t have to worry about getting keys cut, or tracking down a spare key from, say, your housekeeper or your best friend, and you can complete this step from anywhere, at any time!)
- Set multiple alarms! The worst way to start a vacation by missing a flight or a bus or a train. Give yourself a snooze or two.
- Bonus for the extra-prepared: Lay out the clothes you want to wear in the morning so you can breeze through getting ready without any extra effort.
The morning of:
- Take out the trash! Nothing ruins a the buzz of a vacation like coming home to the smell of rotting trash. Leave it by the door the night before if you think you’re likely to forget it!
- Wash the dishes! Whether this means running the dishwasher or quickly hand-washing that mug and spoon from your pre-flight coffee, this goes hand in hand with the previous tip; no one wants to come home to funky smells.
- Make sure all doors and windows are secure! This might be as simple as double-checking that the front door is locked behind you, but it definitely adds some peace of mind to the rest of your travel day.
- Turn off the AC/heat! Don’t waste money heating or cooling a home no one is going to be in!
- Water Plants! Especially if you don’t have someone house-sitting while you’re gone.
- Switch off outlets and/or unplug big appliances! Same reason as above, you don’t want to pay to power a coffee maker you’re not going to be using!
- Give yourself a little extra time! Leaving early means delays are less stressful, and with everything checked off your checklist, the holiday can start the second you step out your door!