Booking a vacation has never been easier than it is today. A few searches online, drop your package into the cart and whip out your credit card.
Et viola, you are booked!
Here are some things to consider before booking your next vacation though, so you are totally ready to go once the time comes.
Decide what kind of vacation you want
Are you hoping to spend your time relaxing on the beach or by the pool, sipping fruity drinks with umbrellas in them? Do you want your biggest mental challenge to be which buffet to pick for lunch?
Or maybe you want to spend the entire trip immersing yourself in the cultural of a new city or country. Your idea of fun is to take a bike tour of a city while hearing about the history on every corner and then grabbing a snack at a busy streetside cafe with the locals.
Make sure you pick a destination that suits your style.
Research your chosen destination
Now that you have decided on a destination do some research to determine the best time of year to go depending on your priorities.
For example, if laying on the beach is your plan then you will want to check average temperatures and weather patterns and pick the best time.
Or maybe your budget is the major concern. In most tourists spots you can hit a ‘fringe’ season as most locations have discounts if you go just before or just after the major tourist season.
Many rental and tour companies offer discounts for booking online or booking ahead.
If your itinerary is set then booking your walking tour before you leave home can save you money.
Sometimes even booking the same day but buying online can save some cash. Don’t be on the one who paid the most to get on your tour bus!
Check it out at home before you go and be sure to review the cancellation policy, just in case.
Get in shape
Nothing can wreck your bike tour of Amsterdam faster than not being able to make it up the first hill you get to.
Be realistic about your level of fitness before you book your trip to hike the Inca trail or you will have wasted your money. If your goal is to hike up Kilimanjaro then you are going to need to do preparation before you get there and start hiking in your local area.
If your goal is to lose a few pounds and get active before your trip, consider a protein shake diet and start at least 90 days before you leave.
Buy the right gear
Depending on what style of vacation you have planned you will probably need to buy a few new things in preparation for your trip.
Start with a great new classy carry on bag to get you there in style. Depending on your plan, this bag can double as a beach bag or a backpack for day excursions.
If you are headed to the beach then you will want to grab a couple of new swimsuits and these can be hard to find in the middle of winter at your local store so plan ahead.
If you are planning on lots of hiking or walking then be sure to break in your footwear well in advance. Wearing a brand new pair of hiking boots for the first time isn’t always pleasant and you don’t want to be dealing with blisters while on vacation.
Once you have done all your advance preparation then just relax and enjoy your trip. You will have a much better experience with a little advanced planning and you will be ready for your adventure.