What’s on your list of New Year’s resolutions? This year, why not resolve to do and see more? Whether you fly across the globe or drive just a few towns over, the benefits of travel should have you adding “travel more” to your resolution list.
Studies have shown that one of the biggest regrets people have late in life is not traveling enough. So stop dreaming about that trip of a lifetime and make it happen this year! Here are our top five travel resolutions for the year.
1. Start saving
Between flights, hotels, meals, and attractions, travel can quickly get expensive. The best way to combat this is to make a plan and start saving now. You don’t need to be rich to travel; you just need to be mindful about how you save and prepare.
Budget your expenses and make sure you’re on track to meet your goal. Pledge a portion of your paycheck to your travel fund or use a round-up app to set aside your spare change easily, and consider protecting your travel investment with travel insurance.
2. Try a different way to travel
The new year is a great time to try a new mode of transportation. Make your trip about the journey, not just the destination.
Trains are a great way to see breathtaking views. Try the Amtrak’s Coast Starlight to see the iconic views along the Pacific Coast Highway, or Switzerland’s Glacier Express.
For travelers interested in exploring more than one destination, river cruises are great choices. The ships are much smaller than traditional cruises, so instead of traveling the coast of major destinations, river cruises build itineraries around multiple riverside cities.
3. Travel sustainably
Now more than ever, travelers are concerned about the impact of their travel. Not only should travelers consider their ecological footprint but also the impact on the local communities they visit. In the new year, start taking some steps in a more green and sustainable direction.
Every meal you eat, activity you plan, or place you stay is an opportunity to have a positive impact. Planning will make sure your money goes to support the community you flew halfway across the globe to explore.
Opt for slow travel by taking trains over planes whenever possible. Trains may not be the fastest way to travel, but they can be comparable when you factor in the commute to and from the airport and security wait times. Plus, you get to cross off two resolutions in one!
4. Take a solo trip
The idea of hitting the road by yourself can be intimidating. If personal growth tops your resolution list, make solo travel a priority. Solo travel gives you the chance to unwind, experience a new culture, and learn a bit about yourself along the way.
If traveling on your own is new to you, pick a destination you feel confident exploring. This could mean a long weekend getaway nearby to get your feet wet. If your wanderlust is telling you to take that trip of a lifetime, be sure to do ample research beforehand.
Many tour companies offer group itineraries for solo travelers. These are great options for those who want flexibility to explore on their own, but a group for safety and guidance.
5. Plan a staycation
Cold winter weather may have you eyeing some tropical getaways, but sometimes wanderlust can make you forget how wonderful home can be. A well-planned staycation can easily become one of your favorite vacations!
Research new restaurants you haven’t gotten the chance to try yet, or check out the latest exhibit at your local museum. Don’t forget to buy yourself a souvenir! And with the money you’re saving on travel expenses, splurge to make your home feel like a getaway. Spruce up your room with fresh flowers or hire a professional cleaner for the room-service experience.
Planning is crucial to a good staycation. Break out of your normal routine and be mindful of your time. Delete your work email from your phone entirely so you won’t be tempted to take a peak. Those emails will be waiting for you once you’re back in the office.