Don’t Labor Over Your Last-Minute Getaway Plans by Maria Cannon of hobbyjr.org
When it’s time to get away, you don’t have to plan months in advance to make it fun and affordable. All it takes is a little legwork and a bit of flexibility. Here are a few ways to make your last-minute travel a trip to remember, brought to you by A Walk in the Park with Colleen.
The benefits of travel.
It’s always good to get away from the hustle and bustle of daily life, especially as the summer begins to wind down. Not only is a getaway a great way to bond with your children, but this excursion can help you clear your mind and lessen the stress associated with life or work — this is especially important if you’re a manger, as people in these positions tend to have more trouble with stress than others. The point, of course, is to find a place your whole family will enjoy and then make arrangements to execute this plan.
Flexibility is the key.
It is best if you don’t get your collective hearts set on one destination, so keep an open mind. Look for locations that are close to home or that work better for off-season travel. For example, your family could enjoy visiting an oceanside locale in the cooler months and take advantage of fewer crowds. Or perhaps there’s a major city you’ve been wanting to enjoy, where you can check out museums and maybe even attend a sporting event.
Stretch your entertainment budget.
No matter where you go, part of the fun is getting to see the best parts of the area. Fortunately, you don’t always have to pay full price for things like museums and theme parks. Many of these locations offer coupons at highway rest stops and hotel lobbies, or you can scout out local Groupon offers before you travel. You can also contact local sports teams and schools to see if they offer coupon books or savings cards with places that appeal to you.
You also want to bring along some distractions for the road and night. A handheld video game system, a few new books, and a device that easily plugs into a TV or computer and streams their favorite movies and shows will go a long way toward keeping the youngest members of your group from complaining of boredom. Before you buy, do your research to make sure the device you choose fits your budget and serves your purpose.
If you plan to fly, check airfare rates first.
Exorbitant cost is often a deal-breaker when it comes to last-minute vacation plans, so it makes sense to secure transportation before you book a room. The Million Mile Secrets blog smartly suggests looking at Orbitz or Expedia to get an idea of potential costs. Next, don’t be afraid to tap into credit card miles. If you find that flying is too expensive, but it is too far to drive, consider alternate transportation. Depending on where you live, you may be able to take a train and use the journey as part of the experience.
Stay close to home.
If you’re really honest with yourself, you probably do not fully utilize the amenities of your own home town. The vast majority of us tend to avoid the places other people come to visit. You can save time and money by staying somewhere closer to home. Many hotels and resorts offer resident discounts. People in Tennessee, for example, can stay at Westgate Smoky Mountain Resort for 10-15 percent off current rates. Live in Florida? Your state driver’s license will get you 10 percent off at Harbour Beach Resort. Keep in mind that you only have so many days to experience the adventure. Your children do not want to be stuck in the car – what they really want is to try something new, have a pool to hang out in, and bring their friends, the latter of which is much more realistic when you stick close to home.
More than anything, never lose sight of the fact that there is no wrong way to vacation. If you are having fun and not going into debt, then anywhere you go together will help you build priceless memories that will linger in your thoughts for a lifetime.
Image via Pixabay -Don’t Labor Over Your Last-Minute Getaway Plans