travel while autistic

travel with autism

Hello, an autistic writer I know of talked about a trip to Disneyland, and asked readers for tips for travel while autistic.  It’s a commonality of autism that we have trouble with change.  Travel is change.  Travel usually means less control over our environment, so it helps to have a plan.

When my spouse Ming and I were houseless and underhoused, that was a ton of travel.  We did that for four and a half months–we became good at it.  I learned what matters to me.

So I have a ideas still fresh for how to make travel while autistic possible.  Here’s a list.

travel while autistic

  • schedule downtime
  • schedule alonetime
  • emotional first aid kit
  • bring our rice cooker so we can cook foods that work for me easily
  • increase protein for emotional stability
  • don’t allow anything to mess with my sleep schedule
  • don’t allow anything to mess with my daily exercise / movement
  • ask spouse for touch
  • noise canceling headphones
  • stim freely
  • remember i feel like crap the day after travel so don’t plan anything
  • alert temporary chosen family to high stress travel days
  • ask for prayer and checkins
  • sing
  • make art even a little bit
  • daily sunning if possible
  • nature time
  • all the dailies like gratitude journaling
  • what my spouse and I say to each other every day: “I’m on your side, your needs matter to me, I’m going to help you get your needs met, I love you.”


When I get scared and start losing my mind, it grounds me when Ming tells me he’s on my side, my needs matter to him, he’s going to help me get my needs met, and he loves me.  On a good day, all of that is obvious.  On a hard day, I can get confused and think no one is on my side and I’m screwed.  Feeling screwed can lead to nihilism and bad behavior.

The words matter, but also it helps to have a set thing we can say that’s reliable and predictable.  We recite it like a prayer or spell.


Sometimes I think I should never travel.  The stress is too much.  My well-being requires low stress.

But I need to see new places and try new things.  I need to see a few people who live far away.  So it helps to have ways to do that skillfully.

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