It used to be that travel was easy. Maybe you planned your vacation based on what was close by – where you could drive within a day, for example. Or maybe you chose your vacation spot based on what your friend or family recommended.
In the past, airlines only flew to certain destinations with any regularity and unless you were plugged in to the travel industry, you might not have realized all of the options of where you can travel. Thanks to the internet though, and sources like the Travel Channel and a proliferation of magazines, books and more devoted to exploring destinations around the world, when it comes to planning a vacation, you might feel like you have option overload.
So how do you decide where to go for your next getaway? To help you make sense of the overload of holiday information, take this quick quiz. You might find ideas for a destination you never even thought of before.
- What do you like to do on vacation?
- Relax. The less I have to do, the better.
- Explore. I want to go, go, go and see as much as possible.
- I like to have a nice mix of downtime and exploring.
- What is most important to you in a hotel?
- I want luxury! The hotel needs to have every amenity for me to be comfortable.
- I want something out of the ordinary.
- I just want a place to stay that is clean and comfortable, and maybe offers a few extras.
- How comfortable are you getting out of your comfort zone?
- I’d rather stick to the familiar.
- Traveling is about new experiences! Bring it on!
- I’d like to learn some new things and see something different, but I want some familiarity with the language, food and culture.
- What’s your budget?
- The sky’s the limit!
- I’m on a budget, but I’m willing to make a few splurges.
- I’m on a pretty tight budget.
- What do you prefer for your vacation environment?
- I love the beach, but I’ll take anything that’s quiet, serene and beautiful.
- I want action. Whether a city or a jungle, I want all of my senses to be engaged.
- I’m flexible.
What Your Answers Are Telling You
Look at your answers. If you circled mostly A’s, you might be happiest taking a vacation to a luxury hotel or spa. Try booking a room at one of the high-end hotels on the Hawaiian island of Lanai, for example. As one of the smaller, less populated islands in the chain, Lanai caters to those who want to relax and be pampered. Activities are available, but it’s perfectly acceptable to spend your time lying by the pool soaking up the Hawaiian sunshine. Consider some of the smaller Caribbean islands, like Dominica or St. Barth’s, or perhaps a more exotic locale like the Maldives or Samoa for a nice mix of relaxation and beauty.
If you answered mostly B’s, then consider a theme park vacation, such as Disney World in Florida, or something even more rustic, like Costa Rica or Croatia. If you want adventure and action, choose a destination based around outdoor activities or exploring off-the-beaten path sites. For example, on a trip to Costa Rica, you can zip-line, explore volcanoes and raft down a raging river, and then explore the fascinating cities or simply lounge in the shade of a palm tree. Many of these destinations offer great deals as well, helping you stay within your budget.
If you answered mostly C’s, then consider a cruise or all-inclusive resort. These trips will meet your need for adventure and comfort, while also giving you some of the familiarity you seek. Planning these trips is generally easy, and involves choosing from an array of options, making them great for last-minute trips and those on a budget, since almost everything is included in the price.
Planning the perfect vacation takes time and research, and it’s easy to get bogged down in all of the options. By clarifying what you want – and what you expect – though, you can find just the right destination, and you’ll return home rejuvenated and excited to go on your next adventure.
About the Author: Jenny Simon is a retired travel agent who now works as a travel writer. When she was not retired however, she specialized in themed vacations for her clients. Now though, she enjoys those kinds of trips for herself, when not living in her beloved Cornwall.