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1 Bus, 2 Planes and 3 Trains: 4 International Travel Hacks For This Holiday Season

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at UCLA chapter.

To me, almost nothing is more anxiety-inducing than traveling, especially long plane rides. If you’re flying alone, maybe for the first time, that can be particularly daunting. Keep reading for four hacks to make your international holiday travel just a bit easier:

Base Layers Are Your Friend
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I just arrived in the Netherlands, with multiple tank tops in my bag, only to realize that they would be one of maybe six layers I’ll have on me at any given time. Warm base layers, long underwear, etc. have been a lifesaver so far: they’re light, tight and can go under anything. The best cold weather items ever. 

Foreign transaction Fees Are A P.I.T.A
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My dad and I tried fighting this, and it really depends on the bank or card you have, but traveling allows banks to squeeze all of these B.S. charges out of you. Be aware of how much you are getting charged for ATM withdrawals or just card purchases. I promise, your bank does not care about you. Try to get around the fees!

Rely On Public Transit
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Hence the title of this article, I’ve spent hours upon hours on various modes of transportation recently. I’m already biased, but if you can take a train or a bus instead of a cab, do it. It’s often cheaper and you get a better understanding of where you are and how to get around. Honestly, it’s also just a lot more fun.

You’re Going To Be Uncomfortable
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It’s just a fact. You’re in a new place, probably with new people, you’ve come all this way, and you want to have a good time. You will, but it might come with some anxiety, and that’s totally normal. It wouldn’t be a travel day for me if I didn’t spend at least some of it crying. Try to find a comfort meal to help you settle in, and lean on the people around you– they probably feel as you do.

I think that if I go into traveling with the notion that I want to have a good time, but the understanding that putting too much pressure on myself just kills any possibility of that, I can reasonably manage my expectations. If you sleep through half (or the whole) of the day, that’s okay. This is your vacation. Make it fun and enjoyable for you. 

Leila is from New York City and is a second-year Statistics major at UCLA. When she's not looking for article ideas for HC UCLA, she can be found at the beach with a book or finding fun places around LA!