Happy Wednesday, friends!
It’s another edition of LET’S LOOK!
If you don’t know what this is, once a month, Erika and I do a little link up where we “look” at different aspects of our lives (and then if you blog, you share and link up too!). We have been doing this little linky party for years now, and it’s always one of my favorite posts each month because most of the topics are YOUR suggestions!
So far in 2023, here’s what we’ve “looked at”…
And today, we’re LOOKING AT MY BEST TRAVEL TIPS.
Here you go, contact Mix and Match Travel Agency and let us do it for you.
See you tomorrow!
Ha! Okay, yes, please do that, but also, I have some tips regardless of whether you’re traveling domestically, internationally, in the car, on a plane, with your family or your friends.
These are just some of my basic, solid travel tips. I do offer many more if you’re my client, but these are just the basics that you probably do too…but who knows? Maybe one or two will be new/helpful to you in the future.
These are in no particular order, just the first TEN TIPS FOR TRAVELING I thought about when I sat down today:
#1: PLAN EARLY
We like to book our trips in advance. Even before I was a travel professional (I just celebrated my 11 year anniversary by the way!), we would book in advance. I like to keep a list of places I want to visit. Some are bigger/bucket list spots, some are smaller. If I watch a travel show or read about a destination in a magazine, I jot that down so that I don’t forget. For instance, years and years and years ago, I heard about this island off of France that sounded so cool on a travel show. I’m hopeful one of these days, I’ll get there, but I have it written down so that I don’t forget. I always find that planning in advance not only saves you money (it really does!), but it allows you first dibs to so many things (hotels and cruise staterooms before they fill up, certain seats on planes/trains, tickets to excursions and events…the list is long). Plan, plan, make a list and then book it as early as you can. Another benefit to doing this is…
#2: SAVE/PAY IN ADVANCE
First we save (by setting aside vacation funds to be used for future travels), then we plane early and then, instead of paying for the entire trip at one time, we break up the payments and make installments. I always do this!! We currently have our spring break vacation booked for March 2024, and I’ve been making monthly installment payments towards it. Before spring break, I’ll have the entire trip paid in full. Who doesn’t want to approach their vacation with the trip mostly (if not entirely) paid?
#3: GET REFERRALS, TALK TO FRIENDS
I love when my clients are new referrals because that’s the ultimate compliment for a business owner. Ask friends if they had help, ask them about destinations you’ve seen them visit on their social media, ask, ask, ask! People are the best source of random information about locations and destinations.
#4 GO DURING THE RIGHT SEASON
I always try to encourage people to visit destinations during the ideal season. For example, if you really want to see the snow, make sure you go to a snowy spot in the winter and not on the edges even if the price is a little better. Do you want to spend any money at all if it’s not what you’re going for? Why spend x amount and not see snow if the only reason you’re going to this spot is for the snow. You can apply this to a lot of places. If you really want to see the Northern Lights, go during that peak season. If your husband does not like the heat and will be miserable standing in line at Walt Disney World in July, then go during a cooler time of the year. Who wants to spend the money to go just for your husband to be miserable? If you’re wanting a hot beach vacation, probably don’t go during their rainy season. Basically, really think about what you’re wanting and make sure that if you’re spending your money, you’re spending it to go during the exact right time.
#5: LEAVE ON A GOOD NOTE
You can read my full post on MY 18 KEYS FOR PREPPING FOR A TRIP , but in a nutshell, you can sometimes really hurt your vacation just by the way you departed your house/job/normal life. Make sure your ducks are in a row before you go so that you can fully be in the moment and enjoy your trip.
#6: GO WITH THE “RIGHT” PEOPLE
Not all of your friends and family are meant to travel with you.
Read that again.
Just because you love them as people doesn’t mean you’re compatible to travel together.
I’ve heard way too many horror stories from families and friends who “didn’t realize how different we were until we got on this vacation”. People are particular about the way they travel. From how much money they want to spend (or not spend) to their expectations of when/what we eat, when we get started, when we stop, what we see, how long we spend here, when we go back and rest, when we shop, when we see historical things, and on and on and on. One of these days, I’m going to write a book about the things clients say to me. You guys, go with the right people or for the sake of your family/friendship, don’t go.
#7: GO WHERE YOU WANT TO GO (NOT YOUR KIDS)
I’ve been saying this for years, and I’m going to keep saying it, when your kids are really little, take them where you want to go. So many times, I have people reach out and say “Well, even though we don’t want to go ___, our kids are 2 and 3, so I guess we should”. Um, why would you spend thousands of dollars if you don’t want to go there and your kids aren’t going to remember? You go where YOU want to go. If you want to go to Walt Disney World with babies even though people keep telling you “wait until they’re older, they won’t remember”, you go. If you want to go to London and have the time and the money, take them to London. Your kids might not remember, but they’ll have fun while they’re there nonetheless. There are parks, attractions, yummy food, friendly people, and fun family adventures…take them. My kids have been to almost 30 countries and can’t remember probably 10 of them. I don’t care one bit because I do remember. I have the memories and I was paying the tab, so it’s a win/win. Only spend your hard earned money and much loved time off on places that you want to visit because trust me, your kids will have fun.
#8: PACK FOR YOUR COMFORT
Listen, if you’re a light packer, that’s awesome. Carry on and carry on! If you’re not, don’t force yourself to pack light. Pack what will make you comfortable while you’re away. Truly, there are only a few places with really tight luggage restrictions. For the most part, if you need x,y and z to be comfortable away from home, bring it. If you must sleep with that fan/pillow/etc, bring it. Why sleep miserably on your much anticipated vacation? Don’t follow anyone else’s rules for what you should be bringing.
#9: REALLY CONSIDER THE DAYS OF THE WEEK
For me, certain days of the week are just so much easier for leaving on trips and returning home. Now, it’s not always possible to do this, but I try my hardest not to return home on a Sunday (or heaven forbid a Sunday night). I like to have at least one day to “get my life together” before going back to work on Monday. I also find it hard to leave for a trip on a Monday. I like to leave at the end of the week as my work is mostly behind me. Little details like this really add up when you’re traveling, so if you can, plan accordingly for your schedule.
#10: DON’T BE AFRAID
Be brave! Take that trip! I talk to people every day that would love to go to Europe or South America or Asia or Australia or on a cruise, but it’s something new and unknown and honestly, they’re nervous and afraid. The world is big and beautiful and amazing, go. Do it. Don’t let fear get in the way.
Now, also, please, please, please don’t forget to check out these posts here:
Seriously, read the three above posts. I share way more info and go into way more detail about each topic which will *hopefully* make your next trip easier before, during and after!
Whew! Okay, my girl Erika is in Iceland today (talk about traveling!!), so it’s just me. If you also blogged Let’s Look, make sure you link up below.
Have a wonderful Wednesday! xx