We all have travel bucket lists. Those lists filled with exotic locations in faraway lands sit for ages on phones, notepads or even in your head, but all too often they only do just that: sit there. We all get caught in the hustle and bustle of our daily lives and forget to take time for vacation (planning).
Since meeting A, I’ve done so much more traveling and learned not to view a dream vacation as an impossibility you’re only able to dream about. With a little bit of planning, saving and work (yes, work), you can have that dream vacation become a reality.
Do your research
I know backpacking through the Andes Mountains sounds wonderful, but maybe after learning that you need to train for the altitude change, you decide a trip to the beach is more your style. It’s so important to research any potential travel destinations and the ideal activities you’d do there. It may change your dream vacation plans entirely or open up a new destination you’ve never even thought of! Research also allows you to get an idea of the best time to visit, how much you should plan on spending and any planning concerns (vaccinations, travel advisories, passport updates, etc.) Plus, planning a vacation is almost as much fun as going on it!
Set a budget and save over time
Just like with other big events (weddings, house purchases), budget is a HUGE factor in a dream vacation. That is why cutting back on expenses is crucial. For example, you could search broadband comparison uk to find savings. After you’ve got a good idea of major costs like travel and hotels, you can put together a pretty realistic budget. In addition to the big ticket items, you should budget for souvenirs, food, admission fees and cab fares, plus a little wiggle room. And then the saving starts! Save a little bit at a time, whatever you can spare in your monthly budget, knowing that you are working towards your dream vacation. Try to compare energy providers to see if you can cut down on your monthly bills. Budget for flights and check out websites like Flight Factory. If you know how much you have to save, it can be a little easier to work towards that goal.Skipping lunch out during the work week is a little easier when you know that you’ll get to eat lunch in Paris.
Pack for your activities
One of the worst feelings (for me, at least) is to get all jazzed about going for a jog through London and then realize that I can’t do it because my running shoes are still in North Carolina. Make sure you pack for the vacation you’re actually taking! If you’ll do a lot of sightseeing, pack comfortable shoes. If you want to lay out all day on the beach, maybe leave the jeans at home. Keep in mind if your destination will allow you to purchase common items once you arrive. If your dream vacation is a bit more rural, you may actually need the full first aid kit.
This is going to sound groundbreaking, but while on your dream vacation, you may want to leave yourself some time to relax. I know! But trust me, if you plan every single second, you’ll wind up not enjoying things as much because you’re constantly in go-mode. Leave some gaps in your schedule each day for a longer meal, an afternoon nap or maybe a little extra sightseeing at your own pace.
Talk to the locals
Your guidebooks are great, but locals know where the party is at. Ask locals for recommendations on everything you can! They will take you away from the tourist-centric part of town and into the authentic culture of the destination. On our travels, we’ve had some of the best food, experiences and conversations because we (mainly A) have gone up to a local and started chatting.