After spending so much time cooped up in your own home during 2020 because of COVID-19, you’re likely eager to get traveling! While the road to being able to safely travel domestically and internationally still feels a long way ahead, with new coronavirus vaccines rolling out in 2021, it’s not beyond reason to be thinking of the trip you want to take at the end of the year or beginning of 2022. That being said, with so many options having been taken off the table for so long, how should you go about picking the destination of your dreams?
The good news is that, with the coronavirus affecting so many people’s normal ways of living, your day-to-day life has probably afforded you the chance to save more aggressively for such trips. Many people’s car insurance rates have been cut due to reduced activity on the road, while others have seen a reduction in spending on non-essentials as they don’t go out to eat anymore or shop with friends on the weekend. All of this means that the world is your oyster as you consider your options for a trip. Whether you’re choosing between a trip to several national park campgrounds in the United States or a scenic drive up the coast of Ireland, here are few tips to keep in mind as you plan what is sure to be a much-needed vacation after a year fraught with tumult and turmoil.
Think about the hobbies you’ve missed while quarantining.
For many, having to quarantine during a global pandemic has been stressful enough just because of the uncertainty that has accompanied the past year. However, for a large subsection of the world, whose hobbies are linked to social activities or other industries shut down by the pandemic, dealing with the effects of the coronavirus has been even more challenging. If you have a love for geology like renowned lawyer and mineral enthusiast Howard Fensterman, the best trip you might take after quarantining might be a hike through different canyons, arches, and campgrounds on the hunt for different gems and crystals. In the last year, a lot of people wound up flocking to different national parks and campgrounds as a way to get outdoors, and these crowds and limits from the National Park Service may have made it difficult for you to fully enjoy a hike on the trail looking for gems. If you’re a hobbyist geologist with a passion for natural resources, consider planning a trip that allows you to take a scenic drive across the country looking for different rock formations and minerals. Without needing to worry about toilet plume and public restrooms, you’ll be able to see a lot more than you would trying to take the trip in 2020.
Make a bucket list and align it with different destinations.
A bucket list is a great way to structure how you live your life to ensure that even if you work hard you’re able to enjoy the fruits of your labor. Perhaps you’re someone who’s always had a goal to see a different part of the world, and so you’ve endeavored to visit all of the 50 states in your lifetime. While you may have already been to major cities and seen places like the White House, there are probably plenty of places that you’ve yet to be able to see in a variety of states. Just like hikers interested in looking for gems, National Parks are great attractions for people wanting to get the most out of North America’s diverse landforms and landscapes. Capitol Reef National Park is a perfect example of a place you might miss if you aren’t pursuing your bucket list. Located in the state of Utah, Capitol Reef National Park is known for its gorgeous rock formations and Canyonlands, all of which make for a breathtaking destination. If you’ve yet to check out northern or southern Utah and are a big fan of serenity, definitely plan on an outdoor adventure that includes this scenic byway.
Decide if you’re traveling with friends or family.
Another factor to weigh as you consider your upcoming trip is whether you’re traveling with friends and family members. On the one hand, traveling with friends is a great way to lower the cost of a trip; however, if you travel with others, you’ll have to cater to some of their tastes, too. If you’re not a big fan of museums but know that your dad is a huge history nut, don’t expect to avoid a few museums if you decide to travel with your parents. The same can be said for traveling with younger children—the ghost tour you’re planning on taking in Savannah, GA may not be appropriate for kids. With all of that being said, it can be fun to travel with a friend or family member — just make sure you plan some time to take and save personal photos to share with others when your trip is done.
Clearly, there are a lot of factors to weigh as you plan your upcoming vacation. Whether you’re the type of person who wants to visit every nation in the country once or have always been a fan of seeing national monuments and museums, there are plenty of ways to determine where your next trip should be. Especially since it will likely be your first trip in a long time, it can be easy to put a lot of pressure onto your trip, but remember that a vacation should be fun and relaxing! As long as you’ve created a bucket list and know that you’re ensuring that your trip is going to align with your own personal interests, it doesn’t really matter if it’s not the vacation you think a lot of people in the United States would take. What matters most is that you enjoy your trip—whether it’s a solo trip as a mineral enthusiast or a family vacation to a beautiful beach with crystal clear waters and a coral reef to go snorkeling at. Keep the above tips in mind and you’ll be certain to have an amazing vacation, no matter what destination you wind up choosing.