We all know that the holidays can be a stressful time of year, but did you know that it’s also the busiest travel season? While some of us stay close to home to visit with family and friends, a lot of us will travel through multiple time zones. The majority of adults find it challenging to get enough sleep each night as it is, but traveling away from home can add stress and disrupt your sleep schedule. Even for the most seasoned traveler, the combination of stress and exhaustion from traveling can wreak havoc on your holiday celebrations.

To help you stay refreshed and in the holiday spirit, we’ve put together some tips that will help you manage your sleep while traveling for the holidays.

woman sleeping on plane as she travels on vacation

Plan Ahead for Your Travels
Leaving your preparations to the last minute can increase your stress levels and lead to a later bedtime the night before your flight. Limit the nagging thoughts keeping you up at night by writing a quick to-do list a few days before you leave. Take the time to run any errands and settle the important things outstanding at home or work, pack your luggage, print your boarding pass, and make sure your devices are charged.

Adjust Your Sleep Schedule Accordingly
Are you traveling to a different time zone? Take time to adjust your bedtime for the new time zone, so you don’t have issues falling asleep on your trip. Try moving your bedtime an hour at a time before you leave, so your body can slowly adjust.

Pack Your Sleep Essentials
Whether you’re staying in a loved one’s house or in a swanky hotel, it’s hard to know what the sleep environment will be like. This can wreak havoc on our sleep because our brains are on high alert when we’re in new surroundings. To help you get comfortable, bring along your pillow, ear plugs, and an eye mask. These and other items like a white noise app or an extra layer of warm clothes can make it easier to fall asleep, and stay asleep.

Have a Consistent Routine
Even though you are in a new place for a short period of time, make sure you are maintaining a consistent bedtime and morning routine. This allows your body to have a consistent schedule to abide by and keeps your body operating as it needs to.

Stay Active
Even though you are on vacation, make sure you keep your body moving and active. Research has shown that the more you use your body throughout the day, the more likely you will be able to fall asleep easily. Consider going on walks, riding a bike, exploring the area, or even doing a quick stretch and move about the place your staying every so often. Your body will thank you later.

Give Your Mind A Break
When your traveling, sometimes mind decides to stay awake while your body is ready for some shut eye. Consider meditating, taking a bath, or other activities to help relax you or reduce stress. An eye mask or ear plugs can help block out unnecessary light and noise, so you can focus on your snooze. As you keep your mind clear, this will allow you have a quieter brain and let you fall asleep quicker and easier.