Taking a vacation is supposed to be a relaxing and fun time, but in my experiences, I have found going on a trip somewhere can actually stress people out. Instead of worrying about everything, here are a few things I have found to help make vacations a little less stressful.
Create a Packing List
The last thing you need on your precious vacation is to realize you forgot your toothbrush, or a bottle of deodorant. Even though these things are usually available in hotel gift shops, they tend to be more expensive than at your average store. Create a packing list beforehand, which tells you exactly which items you are going to bring with you, and use it and check things off your list as you are packing for your retreat.
Purchase Gift Cards in Advance
I am planning for a vacation with some friends in December, and this time I am trying something a little different. I am purchasing gift cards to restaurants that I believe we will eat at. This will help because I will technically already have my food paid for. I do realize we might not eat at all of these restaurants, which is why, I made sure they are all also local eateries so I will still be able to use them if we end up going to different places. For a previous trip to Nashville, I had purchased a gift card to a restaurant, and it worked out great, because I had some extra spending money for souvenirs, instead of having to worry about what I was going to eat.
Instead of trying to book the vacation all at once, plan for it. Figure out where you want to go, and then research it. If you have a destination and a time frame far enough in advance, you will most likely be able to save a lot of money by finding deals to for your vacation spot, and you will have a good idea of how much the vacation will cost you. This will also give you enough time to save for the trip, and make sure it is something you can afford.
Keep it Organized
While you are away, be sure to keep everything organized. Keep your dining money separate from you spending money and your spending money separate from your “fun” money, and so on and so forth. You don’t want to realize that you are out of money in the middle of your stay and wonder what you are going to do for the rest of the time since you ran out of money. Also, keep your suitcase organized. When you purchase souvenirs, make sure they will fit in your suitcase. The last thing you need is to realize you don’t have enough room in your suitcase and have to leave something behind.
When I say go shopping, I don’t mean run out to new places to buy a bunch of new things. You will most likely do that on your trip anyway, and purchase keepsakes to have as memories of your vacation. What I’m talking about it grocery shopping. Go to the local department store and get some snacks to keep in your hotel room with you. This will save you from having to pay $5 for something to munch on that you don’t really want, but get because you are hungry. On the other hand, if you’re like me, you will buy a loaf of bread and some peanut butter and jelly, and enjoy sandwiches for the majority of your vacation, which will save you a ton of money on food.
Instead of relying on your credit card or debit card, use cash while on vacation. This will help you keep track of how much money you are spending and keep you aware of the amount of money you have left to spend. I also know that for me I have a harder time letting go of my cash, than I do handing over my card.