Travelnomics: Stress-Free Holiday Travel Tips For many, the holidays are a time to travel and visit loved ones. But let’s be honest, it can be stressful—for your body, mind and even your spine! But worry not, because we’re here to help. Whether you’re piling into the family car, jumping on a train, taking a bus, or catching a flight, keep these tips in mind for stress-free, healthy holiday travel.

Immune System

Avoid setting your bags down in public restrooms. While you might think that the toilet or toilet seat is the germiest spot in the place, it’s actually the floors. Look for the hooks on the wall or door to hang your bags.

Wash hands regularly—and don’t forget the kids. Sounds like common sense, but it’s easy to forget when you’re on the move. Frequent hand-washing will help reduce the amount of germs on your hands; studies have shown that frequent hand washers have fewer cold and flu symptoms.

Watch sugar intake. It’s a celebratory time of the year, but it’s important to keep an eye on too many sweet treats. Just two cans of soda can weaken white blood cells’ ability to kill germs by 40 percent!

Physical Health

Bring your own pillow. For one, if you’re flying or using public transportation, you can rest easy knowing your pillow is clean and ready to go. And also, if you’re staying at a loved one’s home, you can never really predict what someone else’s bed or couch is going to do to your back—an ergonomic pillow designed for better sleep posture can make all the difference.

Don’t store things in your back pants pockets. If you’re sitting for a long period of time, keep posture in mind. Your wallet, cellphone or other devices stored in your pants pocket can cause unbalanced sitting posture, throwing off the alignment of your hips and spine and setting you up for a weekend of hurt.

Use a rolling suitcase. We know how heavy those suitcases can get around the holiday season! Why risk a lifting injury? Why carry so much extra weight on one side of the body? Invest in a rolling suitcase if possible—it increases your ease of travel and decreases your risk of injury.

Schedule a homecoming visit with your chiropractor! Even if you take precautions, travel can be incredibly hard on the body. When you return home, schedule an appointment with your chiropractor—they’ll be able to address any travel-induced pain and discomfort you may have.

Mental Health

Take a moment to breathe. Many deep-breathing techniques can help slow heartbeat, stabilize blood pressure and get more oxygen circulating throughout the body. Use some diaphragmatic breathing techniques before you take off, so you’ll be prepared to deal with some of those more taxing moments.

Shy away from perfection. Life is unpredictable—enjoy it! Relax in the company of the people around you! There’s more to life than the perfect table setting or beautiful home décor. Be mindful of where you are and who you’re with—the sights, sounds and smells of the holiday. You’ll stress less.