With the summer months just on the horizon, you might be looking to make some fun plans for yourself and your family. Outdoor activities, afternoons spent with friends and family, and maybe even a vacation might all be on the schedule for the months ahead.
A summer vacation can end up being just the break that you need to escape the busyness of everyday life and recharge. However, selecting the ideal location for your vacation can be a bit of a challenge. This is especially true if you are going to be traveling with your family or with a group of friends.
It is true that most people prefer to travel in the summer months. This means that you will need to find a spot that isn’t overcrowded with other tourists but that is also worth seeing.
If you are currently in the process of trying to figure out where to go for your vacation this summer, here are a few tips that can help you to find and book the ideal destination. It doesn’t matter if you are planning a cultural solo getaway, a romantic couple’s retreat, or an action-packed and fun family vacation, these tips will help you find the perfect city for your trip.
Start With Your Budget
The first thing that you will need to figure out before you make any decisions about where you want to go this summer is how much you are going to be able to spend on your vacation. You don’t want to end up in a situation where you have the perfect trip in mind with no way to fund it. Furthermore, it would be rather difficult to actually be on vacation and discover that all of the things you wanted to do are going to cost you more than you had initially thought.
As you are sorting out your vacation budget, make sure that you take things like hotel, travel costs, and food into account. If you are planning on air travel for your vacation, make sure that you also budget for either a rental car or other local transportation. The city you are visiting might have some reasonable and reliable public transportation available, so be sure to do some looking around on that score.
It is also a good idea to perform some research and plan a trip to the top local attractions in the area as well so that you know how much to set aside for tickets and bookings. You might even find that you are able to get a discount for certain attractions by booking in advance online. If you are traveling in a group, you could also stand to save some money by booking tickets at the same time.
With the right plan in hand, you can avoid overspending on your summer vacation and still have a fantastic time away.
Consider Your Interests
Once you know how much you can spend on your vacation, you will want to start looking into vacation destinations based on the local attractions that are on offer. What you want out of your trip in this regard will also depend on who is going to be accompanying you.
For instance, there are plenty of things to do in San Francisco that will appeal to everyone in the family, while there are also some locations that are more ideal for a romantic couple’s getaway. Still, other destinations are more suitable for bigger groups of friends who are perhaps taking a trip to celebrate an event of some sort.
Have a think about the sort of things that you want to see and experience on your trip this summer to narrow down your list of potential destinations. Those who prefer to take their vacations by the water might want to check out some of the more popular cities along the West Coast. Others who are more interested in a city escape have their pick of the lot when it comes to amazing cities to see in the US.
Check Out Your Points
If you are a frequent traveler and have accumulated a fair few points over the years, you might have a look to see just where those points might take you this summer. Whether you have accounts with some of the larger hotel chains or if you are a frequent flyer, you might be able to figure out a great vacation destination based on how many points you have.
This is also an ideal way to drastically reduce costs when it comes to your summer vacation. Even though it is peak travel time in most spots across the country, your points can help to cut down on the price of hotels, air travel, and even rental cars while you are away.
If you don’t yet have any accounts set up that allow you to earn points, now is the time to do so. You might even choose your hotel or airline based on how good their frequent flyer programs are.
Don’t Ignore the Heat
One common mistake that many summertime travelers make when it comes to selecting a destination is that they fail to take into account the heat. Even though summer might be relatively bearable in this regard where you live, you might not actually know off the top of your head just how hot it can get in certain locations.
While there is plenty to be said for using sun protection and choosing indoor activities for your trip, you don’t want to be spending your entire vacation inside. Make sure that you check the forecast and find out roughly how hot you can expect it to be in the destinations that you are considering.
Furthermore, your summer vacation might even present you with the opportunity to get away from the heat for a bit. While most of the country will be quite warm in the summer, places like South Carolina and Georgia don’t tend to get quite as hot as places like Texas.
Ask Your Friends
While you don’t want to plan your entire vacation based solely on the recommendations of friends, there is something to be said for considering the opinions of friends and family. If you have some particularly well-traveled friends in your circle, make sure that you ask them about the places that are on your shortlist.
When you do so, bear in mind the fact that everyone travels differently. They might have a tendency to expect a great deal from their accommodations and services when they travel or even have impossible standards. On the other hand, they might have a more easy-going approach to travel and be more willing to put up with complications or unmet expectations. You know your friends best, so always take such reviews and recommendations with a grain of salt.
When it comes to travel, your best approach is an open-minded one. Remember that you are trying to get away to give yourself a break and take some time out from your chaotic schedule. You also probably want to experience a change of scenery and enjoy something different from your usual routine.
Because of this, you shouldn’t be afraid to research destinations that are a bit off the beaten path. There are plenty of wonderful destinations across the country that are more of the hidden gem variety. The added benefit of opting for such a location is that you will be less likely to find yourself battling the crowds at the top tourist attractions.
In the end, your vacation should include new experiences and things that you wouldn’t otherwise experience in your hometown.
Take Your Time
Remember that this vacation is your chance to get away for a while and enjoy something new. It might even be the only opportunity you have to do so this summer. Avoid rushing the planning process or jumping on a flashy deal simply on an impulse. Such deals can seem like a good idea at the time but might actually end up costing you more on other aspects of your trip in the long run.
When you take the time to sort out and organize your vacation, you can also reduce the amount of stress that comes along with traveling. While there will never really be anything enjoyable about dealing with the hassle of the airport, particularly when you have your kids in tow, the airport is much easier to bear when you know that your entire schedule is worked out for when you land.
Moreover, by taking your time to plan the right trip, you will be more likely to end up with a vacation that fits your budget. You can figure out when the best time of the summer to visit a particular location is so that you will be less likely to run into massive crowds of other tourists while you are taking in the local attractions. Planning well in advance also gives you the opportunity to compare the best hotel rates and find the cheapest airline tickets.