Holiday time is rare and precious. Most of us only spend a few weeks away every year – and many of us enjoy far less time away than that! Think about the finite amount of time you have on Planet Earth, and the finite number of holidays you have left to enjoy, and one clear conclusion might present itself: it’s a good idea to make the most of your holidays!
In most cases, the best way to do this is to plan in advance, so that you can avoid stress and disappointment while you’re actually travelling. There’s an art to doing this, and even a little bit of planning can make a big difference to your experience whilst you’re actually on holiday.
Get all of the documents you need to travel, and put them into order so that they can easily be found when called for. This isn’t the most stimulating of tasks, but the work you do here will pay off later. Included here should be your passports, your travel insurance, your boarding passes, your prescriptions, and the confirmation from your hotel. Make sure that everything is correct and in date. Check the travel advice for the countries you’re visiting, too.
Generally speaking, it’s a good idea to pack early and gradually. Load items into your suitcase over the course of a week, and you’ll avoid having to rush around at the last minute. Here’s where you might compose a checklist, and run through it as you pack. Smaller items like contact lenses are easily misplaced, so keep them all in a smaller bag within your luggage, so that you can inventory them the day before you leave.
Your holiday should ideally provide a sense of escape. But if you come back to find that you’ve overspent, then you might be living with the financial consequences for months afterwards. As such, it’s a good idea to budget, and to plan exactly how much you’re going to spend, and on what.
Ideally, your budget should provide you with just a little bit of wriggle room, to cover spontaneous excursions. That way, if you decide that you’d like to visit this or that attraction, or indulge in a particular activity, then you won’t have to miss out.
If you’re going to be travelling, then you’ll need to think about the actual mechanics of how you get from one place to the next. Flights, airport transfers, car rental – they might all eat into your budget. Sometimes, it’s worth spending extra for a little bit of convenience – but this decision will depend on your destination. Do a little bit of research, find out what’s recommended by other tourists in a given area, and plan your travel accordingly.