It’s that time of year when every single human in western civilization starts manically planning their summer vacations and much-needed sun-chasing trips. We love this part of the adventure. We love pulling out our notepad – or pulling up the note section on our iPad – and working out every single detail of an excursion. It’s what gets us so excited for an escape.
The problem is: planning a vacation can be pretty overwhelming and surprisingly time-consuming, especially if you’re jumping on a jet plane and heading to some faraway paradise. That’s when the art of planning can become an absolute dream-saver.
So, without further ado, here is a short guide on everything you need to consider when planning a holiday, not only saving your time and money, but your sanity too.
1. Decide On The Destination
You can’t plan anything until you have chosen where in the world you want to go, which is why this always-always has to be the first step. Of course, the world is like one giant menu full of delicious choices, so start by looking at what interests you in a holiday and what your budget is, and go from there.
2. Time Scale Is Must-Know
Not everyone can afford a year off to see the world. Most people only get one or two weeks off per year, which is why you don’t want to spend too much time traveling. That could mean staying relatively close to home or only booking direct flights. If you can go away for a couple of weeks or a month, then you can be a little more relaxed.
3. Know Your Travel Buddy
Solo trips allow you to do what you want when you want. If you’re traveling with a friend, as a couple or as a family, however, you need to sit down with your fellow travelers and find out what’s important to each person so that you can compromise in a way that makes everyone’s hopes come to life.
4. Booking Flights & Accommodation
Once you’ve settled on a destination, how long you are going for and who is coming with you, you need to book your flights and accommodation. Our advice: look at Skyscanner to see what deals you can find on the cheap flight front. As for accommodation, you need to know what you are after. It could be a pampered stay in a hotel, it could be the freedom of a self-catered Airbnb home, or even hopping about backpacker hostels.
5. Getting Around On The Ground
Another major thing to consider is your transportation options. If you’re heading to a city, then walking, cycling and public transport are going to be the cheapest. If you’re heading to a villa on the outskirts of a town, you might want to see what the cheapest taxi options are on Ridester.com. If you are planning to see as much of a country as you can, booking cheap train fares in advance could be your best bet. Or, you could hire a car. It all depends on your needs.
6. What You Want To See
Every person has a list of must-see attractions they need to visit or they will kick themselves forever. Our advice: sit down with your travel buddies, look at what the major tourist hotspots are and then having everyone list their top two or three. Once you have everyone’s two-pennies worth you can plan how to see them all in your timeframe.