12 Tips to De-Stress Your Vacation
Whether you're young and single, married with children or empty-nesters with loads of money there are a few basic things you can do to make your vacation much more fun and stress-free.
Ponder your destination in advance. What are your preferences? (Sunny beaches, cool pine forests, active night life) Once you've decided where to go, check out what there is to do there so you don't miss anything or waste your precious vacation time researching. Get individual input from others joining you so everyone feels satisfied, including the kids. Determine how you'll arrive at your destination and the best lodging options to meet your needs. Vacation Rentals By Owner.com is a great site to investigate.
11 Fully Medicated
Pack a little kit with any meds you might need (Children's Tylenol, Ibuprophen for hangover, Band-Aids for blisters from new shoes, antacid tablets for the rich food). Your doctor may even be willing to give you a prescription for an antibiotic if you are prone to sinus or ear infections—"just in case" --it stinks to spend half a day at the beach clinic. Been there!
10 Vehicle Maintenance
Have the mechanic do a once-over on you car. Check hoses, tires, belts and fluids. A break-down means a stalled vacation. Been there too!
9 Coupons, Bargain Days
Major attractions and museums sometimes offer discount days, local restaurants may offer early-bird specials and always look online prior to your trip for coupons. Google: "coupons" plus your destination city.
8 Local Cuisine
Find out where the locals eat and go there. Chains are fine because you know what you're getting but it's fun to venture out. Locals won't keep a place open if it isn't good. Avoid tourist trap eateries. Check out the Food Network for regional dining options. Burgers at Hodads , Ocean Beach...mmm!
7 Think: Action!
Some sitting around and enjoying the scenery is fine, bus tours are great for an over-view but unless you have a disability get out and move! Most of us pack on the pounds while traveling. To prevent this and enhance your trip try hiking the local trails; renting a bike to cruise the boardwalk; paddle boats, kayaks and canoes for a water experience.
6 Give Me A Break!
I believe that parents and children need a break from each other. If possible, bring along a teenager or grandma to help with those breaks or contact a local service with great credentials to hire childcare for a romantic night out. Parents (single or married) need a little adult time, so include this in your plan.
5 Efficient Packing
Know the climate and suitable attire. Wear things more than once, find a laundry service and layer up. Avoid checking luggage on planes to prevent losing bags and delays at the terminal.
4 Pace Yourself
While it's tempting to try to see and do everything, if you pack too much in you'll be exhausted, have less in your bank account and won't likely remember all of it. Prioritize your activities and plan to come again if you don't see everything. Get a little rest. Each activity will be more fun if you're refreshed.
3 The More The Merrier
Unless you're on a honeymoon it can add a fun dimension to travel with friends. Another couple allows for women to have a little girl time, maybe getting a pedicure while the guys catch a game on TV at the local pub. Another family provides children with a new friend instead of just a sibling. Conversations are more lively and fresh when additional folks are involved.
2 Be Flexible
Travel delays, bad weather, illness, sold-out events and more happen in life and on vacation. Expect it and roll with it. Don't let the little things ruin your trip. Your attitude is contagious. If you can bounce back from unexpected challenges or disappointments, so will the rest of your group.Numer Ono: PRAY
Ask for wisdom as you plan, safety as you travel, provision to stretch you dollars, patience in big measure and that you'll be blessed with a lasting precious memory...don't forget to say thanks that you're even able to take a vacation, because not everyone can.
Any Chevy Chase "Vacation" Experiences to share? More suggestions?