Some time ago now I asked you all what topic I should write about next. I aim to please so the here it is: how I pick locations for travel. Obviously there is little value in telling you where to travel; this blog is the process I use to pick a destination to get the most from our travel.
In the real world I have to think of the practical and somewhat boring factors: budget, period of time we can afford or if MC can get leave, or the distance we are happy to travel etc. More often than not it is not possible and I go back to dreaming of the next trip whilst changing my umpteenth nappy for the day. If I have to change this many bums why not do that in a more exotic location?!
Either way when planning a trip the most important question you need to ask yourself is “what do we want from the trip?”. All choices should then be based around those desires.
In reality the process for me goes something like this:
The world is your oyster! Live the life you want. Be what you want to be. <Insert your own inspirational overused quote here!>
Boring Bits : Budget and Time
The most obvious and annoying steps go hand-in-hand; budget and time. This part is pretty self-explanatory; you know how much cash you got and how much time you have! I look at our budget on a number of levels. Firstly I will have a total budget in mind; from there I will look at flights and accommodation options and availability. The more flexible you are the more money you can save. I will then look at a daily budget – this includes estimating how much we will need for food and other activities. In an ideal world you would add on say 20% to the budget. In reality though it will go on a credit card!
Another important consideration is holiday length. How long do you have for the trip? This should be factored into the distance you should travel. For example you can go somewhere that will take 10 hours to fly to for 4 days; but it is unlikely you will have an enjoyable time. Similarly driving 1 hour for a 3 week holiday is probably a lost opportunity.
Fun bits to plan. I am a planner. Some people can wing it. But I plan to plan. Probably my anxiety rearing its ugly head again! What do you want to do on your trip? What do you want to experience? Where do you want to eat? Who do you want to met? What do you want to see? Who do you want to be? HA!
For many families this will be dictated by the age of your children. As our children are young and have little say at the moment we focus on reconnecting, relaxing and being comfortable. I usually have a list to what I would like to do. Often sounds like this:
- To do sweet-FA = No cleaning or cooking.
- Eat local foods.
- Explore new lands.
- Immerse into a new culture.
- Try to ‘give back’ somewhere or to someone we meet.
- Get a massage or spa and try to relax as much as humanly possible!
- Something to do with animals!
A final word on health.
Firstly given our background we try to ensure the health and safety about our kids. Danger or risk is subjective. We will always look at the ‘health’ section for the country of choice to see if there are any outbreaks of disease or what vaccinations are recommended. You should talk to your family GP or travel doctor for more information.
Brace yourself for Penang blogs over the next few weeks!
AND a terrifying and exciting new announcement in the next few weeks!!!! HINT: We are sick of being cocooned, we are breaking free and going to fly!!