(By Contributor Saad Ali): Going on vacation is an exciting time. You have worked hard to earn your vacation and you should enjoy this time as much as possible. That means doing whatever it takes to prevent problems from spoiling your vacation. Read this article for some good ideas on how you can minimize problems on your trip.

There is nothing worse than forgetting to bring your tickets or identification. Therefore, before you leave for your trip, make sure that you have all of your travel documents with you. Put them in a clearly visible place at home where you will not forget.

Make a list of the things that you want to pack. If you are bringing something that you will not need until the trip, pack those things early, and check them off your list. Packing early will allow you enough time to carefully think about what you really need, and it will give you a chance to buy the things that you do not have that you do need. Then, before you leave, check what you have packed again to make sure that you did not leave behind anything on your list.

Avoid packing things that you will probably not need. For instance, if there is very little chance of rain, do not pack any rain gear. This will only take up precious space in your suitcase. For bulky toiletry items, keep in mind that you can probably get most of them at your destination. As for clothes, pack clothes that are easy to care for and wrinkle resistant. Bring items that you can mix and match with each other to create different ensembles. You only need to bring two pairs of shoes: one pair of walking shoes and another pair of dressier casual shoes in a neutral color for those fancy dinners.

Air travel has a lot of restrictions these days. There are many types of items that you are not allowed to bring on board. Check the TSA regulations on their website for the latest updates to avoid any hassle at the security check point.

Avoid traveling alone. It is always safer to travel with a companion. It is also more entertaining.

Plan for your trip early so you can take advantage of good airfare and hotel deals. Try to stay a little flexible in your departure and arrival dates to get the best deal possible. Sometimes by altering those dates by a day can make a big difference in cost.

Remember that your vacation is a time for fun. Even though you may think that there is a ton of things to do to prepare for it, at the end, you will see that it is well worth it. Although there is always a chance that something will throw a wrench into your plans, like flight delays and cancellations, try to go with the flow. Remind yourself that things will work out at the end. Keep a positive outlook, and you will be able to have the time of your life.