How to Plan a Successful Staycation

Q: We can't afford to go on a vacation this summer. I've heard about 'staycations' but I'm concerned that doing one will just end up feeling like more time spent at home. How do you turn it into a real vacation?

A: A staycation can be a great way to enjoy a vacation while saving money on transportation and accommodation. Whether you are travelling 5,000 kilometres or in and around your city, the key to having a memorable vacation is planning.

With staycations you also need to create a holiday environment. Some people set up a tent in their backyard and sleep outdoors to set the right mood while others plan daily outings and enjoy local festivals, attractions, parks and activities.

Although a staycation may sound interesting, without some preparation it won't feel like a vacation. If you want your family to buy into the concept of a vacation at home, involve them in the planning process and let them come up with activities to experience and sights to see.

Here are some additional points to consider:

  • Set a start date and an end date for your staycation.
  • Avoid working on projects around the house. This is your vacation and it won't feel like a vacation if you spend your time completing chores.
  • To create the feel of a traditional vacation, avoid everyday routine. Ignore the mail, emails and phone calls just as you would if you were actually away on vacation.
  • Set a staycation budget but don't let this deter you from having a good time.
  • Act like a tourist in your own town. What sights, scenes and activities would you recommend for visiting family or friends? Try these out with the eyes and attitude of a tourist.

A well-planned staycation will leave you with fond memories and photos instead of a monthly reminder on your credit-card statement.

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