Movies and television shows have romanticized the image of the spontaneous trip. True, there are times when that hastily planned, spur-of-the-moment trip could be just the ticket. In reality, there are advantages to vacation planning, even months in advance. Let’s explore a few of those benefits.
1) You get more choices
When you plan in advance, you get more options. Booking your flight earlier lets you have a full range of flight times. Picking your vacation home early allows you to pick the one that will make your vacation most memorable. You can even enjoy options for things as simple as arranging transportation from the airport. It prevents you from having to take what’s left.
2) It can save money
Short notice airline tickets tend to be more expensive. When you plan ahead, you can take advantage of flash sales from airlines or car rental deals. It is not uncommon to see prices start to increase as the number of available seats or cars decreases, so being early can keep you from paying more. You can even choose dates that allow for lower airfares if you have flexibility because of your early planning. In addition, booking early allows you to spread out payments if you need to watch your budget.
3) You can plan more activities
By planning early, you give yourself more time to plan activities on the trip. You have time to research the area or talk to friends that may be familiar with the area. This lets you read restaurant reviews, travel blogs or watch videos to see what choices suit your desires. Then can book shows, outdoor recreation activities and dinner reservations ahead so once you arrive, you can go fully into relaxation mode.
4) It makes you happier
Believe it or not, planning your vacation months in advance can make you happier. Much happier according to research from the Institute for Applied Positive Research. They found that 94% of vacations “…result in higher levels of happiness and energy if the employee plans a month in advance…” As a bonus, planning ahead allows you to coordinate your time off with co-workers, making it less likely for you to be interrupted on your trip and less stressful when you return.
Even the planning itself has a mental health benefit. One study showed that “…delayed gratitude – that time between when you book the trip and actually go on it – was more pleasurable than immediate consumption.” In other words, anticipation and excitement can improve your mental health even before the trip.
5) Planning lets you maximize your experience
When it comes to a vacation, the experience matters far more than the purchases. Sure, it’s fun to buy a souvenir t-shirt or a refrigerator magnet made from seashells, but those are not what will make you smile years later. The experience surrounding them is what does that. By planning ahead, your full attention can be focused on being present, being in the moment, not on checking to see if there are spots open for the fishing charter you want to go on. Not only can you be more attentive to your family or spouse in those moments, but you can spend your downtime relaxing, not trying to plan the next day’s activities.
Our Serendipity staff is here to help you plan your vacation. Contact us and our experts can help you select one of our amazing vacation homes and get your vacation planning over to a strong start.
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