Let’s face it, we always envy those people that seem to be going away somewhere every weekend. They seem to just be able to find the best deals and run off to a great adventure at the drop of a hat. While we ourselves, we’re always struggling on weekends to get chores done, find money, and there’s just never seems to be enough time to go out and enjoy ourselves before the weekend is over. So how do they do this? Well, it really isn’t as tough as it seems, it’s just a matter of preparation and mindset. It’s a bit like anything else in life, if you organize yourself it will tend to work out. Here are some of the things that you can keep in mind if you want to be that ultimate weekend Traveler.
Find the time
First thing you’re going to have to do, as obvious as it seems, is to find the time. If you put off everything during the week that you have to do until the weekend, you will definitely not have the time to go on that weekend adventure unless you want to come back to a disaster, so find the time. During the week, get everything done and get it out of the way. If you have to have a meeting with somebody or dinner with a relative, plan it on a weeknight as opposed to the weekend. Run your errands after work or whatever else you need to do. Once you have got things out of the way you will find that you don’t have much else to do on the weekend and you can then find the time to take weekend off to enjoy it.
Keep an eye out for cheap deals
After you have the time, the next thing you need to know is where you’re going to go. It’s usually better to plan by the better deal than it is to plan by the destination. If there is somewhere you have always wanted to go, don’t focus on that, but keep an eye open for a deal that goes to where you want to go. Until that time, just pick the best price deals that sound fun to you. Get all the deal newsletters or emails, and sort through them and think where you can go. Sometimes you may have to plan many months in advance, and sometimes you can plan it almost immediately for the week ended upcoming. There are some great websites for finding the best prices on flights that are coming. Skyscanner or Scott’s Cheap Flights for example, but we find one of our favorites is Google Flights. You can put in where you live, and it will give you various prices for destinations. You can also see quickly where the best prices are in the future. For note, remember that flight prices change all the time, so when you look at something one day, the next day or the next week it might be completely different. Travelzoo and others like it are also great resources. You can find cheap hotel there to. Just explore around the web and sign up to some mailing lists, and you’ll be surprised at what you may find.
Another good thing to remember when you’re going away for a weekend is that you’re not going away for a week. You only need to take the minimum. If you’re going to do something casual, you could probably wear the same jeans you are traveling in for 2 days and bring an extra t-shirt and you will be fine. So don’t pack the kitchen sink, and everything else you think you might need, just pack the best essentials that you know you’re going to need. Pack for what you will do, not for what you might do. That’s not to say that you can’t take one nice shirt or dress with you in case, but pack light and keep it simple.
Prepare the essentials
Another thing to do is make a go-pack. This is just basically a travel bag that has everything you need in it if you’re going to suddenly go away. It might have an extra razor, toothbrush, makeup, t-shirt, pair of flip-flops, spare medicine, or whatever else you might need if you were going to go away and did not have chance to pack. Having a go-bag is an essential trick for being a weekend traveler. It means when you find that great deal, even if it’s tomorrow, you’re ready to go. You can add and adjust the go-bag with other clothes and essentials as needed, but it definitely makes preparing for that weekend trip much, much easier.
Keeping the expenses down
While getting there can be very inexpensive, sometimes we have found that while you’re there the expenses get high rather fast. So it’s also a good idea, once you know where you’re going to go, to check discount sites such as Groupon or any of its other brothers that run similarly. We used to get amazing results from the Entertainment Book for 2 for 1 meals. Remember that if you’re going to be a weekend Traveler, and do it a lot, you need to watch the money and keep it as inexpensive as you can while still enjoying yourself. If you spend too much this week, you might not be able to spend enough next week.
It’s also a good idea to bring a credit card or some emergency cash that you’re not going to use, let me emphasize that again, that you are NOT going to use. That is money that in case you get a flat tire, or there is suddenly some fee or something that you need that you don’t have and absolutely must have, then you have the cash to take care of it.
emergencies happen, they can even be a medical emergency. We would also suggest you buy some Travelers Insurance, as it can be worth is weight in gold if you get sick or hurt while you’re traveling. Even if It’s only a weekend and you’re only going a couple of hundred miles away, Travelers Insurance is still well worth it. Also make sure you leave your contact information, as well as where you’re going to be, with some close friends or family, just in case they need to reach you for any reason.
Just remember that it’s not the end of the world if you missed bringing something. If you’re going to be moving to a new state and live there, forgetting to bring your bed might be a big thing but if you’re only going to go away for the weekend, forgetting to bring a raincoat is no big deal. You can always buy an umbrella very cheap when you’re there. Don’t sweat things, just take it easy and enjoy yourself. If you forget something, you can always buy it. If you’re not enjoying yourself, you can either leave or, hey, it’s only 2 days. You can struggle through and learn from your mistakes, so the next time you go away you’ll be better at it. After you get a few weekends under your belt and start to get the hang of it, people will start being amazed and wishing they had your life. Enjoy.