People often always resort to the question “Where do you want to go?” when planning a vacation neglecting the equally/more important questions “What do you want to experience? What do you want to do? What do you want to learn?” or “What do you want to see?”. Some people go on vacation as an escape from their stressful lives. Some people have a deep sense of adventure and need to travel to fuel that curiosity. Some people take vacations to just spend awesome quality time with their families and create memories. Each person is unique, each season of life is unique and we can’t expect our vacations to magically be epic and fuel our every desire. We have to intentionally think about our desires and then plan accordingly. It takes some upfront time but it makes the investment SO much better! Lets begin!
- Step 1 List: Make a list of all of the vacations you’ve taken in the past. If you plan on taking this trip with a spouse or kids, have them partake in the exercise.
- Step 2 Score: Number them from favorite (1) to least favorite trip. Be honest, if you enjoyed the weekend road-trip to your local spring more than your 2 week backpacking trip though Nepal than so be it! Don’t label a vacation higher because it sounds like it was an epic vacation, remember this is about creating a vacation that you will enjoy not just one that sounds good.
- Step 3 Evaluate: Go through each trip and respond to these 2 questions: 1. What was the best part about this trip? 2. What would’ve made this trip better? For example: our christmas road trip would’ve been more enjoyable if we would’ve planned our destinations before we left, I loved our weekend camping trip because I am always peaceful in nature, I didn’t enjoy our trip to disney because it was overpriced and exhausting, or New York was my favorite because exploring new cities is invigorating! You get the idea.
- Step 4 Conclusions: Notice the consistencies and tips and draw conclusions to apply to your upcoming trip. For example: exploring a city sounds super glamorous to my husband and I but every time we are in a city it stresses us out. So we’ve concluded that we don’t spend more than 1 day in a city- we head out to nature!
- Step 5 Plan: So talk to everyone who is going and asked based on what we’ve enjoyed in the past and our current desires, what are 1-3 things that you want to do or experience? Write them all out.
- Step 6 Research: If you have hiking and asian culture on your list, research the best hikes in China. If you have see penguins and go sand boarding, research places that have both such as Chile.
- Step 7 Make decisions: Choose your experiences, your destination and verify your budget matches. Book your tickets and write out your itinerary!
If you need help finding a place to accommodate your desired experiences, comment below and I can help you! Also, any of these areas that need further clarification or more details, let me know I’ll write more about budgeting, research, finding great deals and prices, best places for certain activities etc.