Oh the allusive staycation. Staying at home...whilst on vacation. Most of us have attempted. Few of us have succeeded. You know why? Because when you’re home it’s easy to slip back into your regular routines - running errands, doing laundry, taking on home projects. That’s all well and good, but that’s not a vacation.
Vacations are such because they are departures from the regularity of everyday life. It’s an alternative universe where snacks cost more, beds are magically made for us, we sleep in, and so many other things we love.
Repeat after me: staycations are my friend. Seriously, you can save major moola by vacationing at home - up to 15% of your annual income according to Forbes. Say what?
I love a good vacation. I also love a good staycation. I want it all! It’s becoming increasingly challenging to have a leisurely jaunt but that’s ok...cuz I’ve got you covered on how to create an awesome, luxurious staycation.
Know your budget.
That’s right...just because you’re not flying out doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have a budget. Start by understanding what you usually spend on a vacation and go from there. Look at the things you've done (and enjoyed) and what those things cost. Do not move your airfare savings to your activities bucket.
Know what luxury is to you.
For some, it’s a stay at a five star resort with personalized service. For others, it’s a tricked out yurt near a great hiking trail. Know what brings you the most joy on your vacations or the criteria you consider when seeking a locale.
Make a list of activities.
I love a good list, but this isn’t the time to stress. Keep it light but do think it through. While you can freestyle it on vacation, lack of a plan on staycation can lead to you slipping back into a regular routine. The trick is to capture some of the magic that takes place when you go away - becoming immersed in different cultures, relaxing, being pampered, eating good food, being active, whatever floats your boat. Some staycation activities might include:
- Dinner at new restaurant
- Seeing an exhibit at a museum
- Cooking class with a great local chef
- Bourbon tasting
- An in-home meal prepared by a private chef
- A day at the spa or in-home spa treatments
- Picking up theater popcorn from a local theater and having movie-night at home
- A drive to a nearby town with great scenery and eats
- A drive-in movie
- A nature hike with unique birds or scenery
- Camping in your backyard
- Takeout from your favorite restaurants
- Visit to a local farm to pick strawberries, apples or veggies
- Hiring a housekeeper and/or sitter for a day
- A personal trainer
- Coffee from your favorite cafe
Armed with your list, start determining how you will spend your days. Look at the time you have and choose a few things you want to have done by the end of your staycation.
Here’s a sample 3-day schedule with kids:
- Order in pancakes for breakfast
- Pack a lunch and go on a hike to a place with interesting scenery and opportunities to see something unique
- DIY pizzas for dinner
- Pick up popcorn from your local theater and have family movie night in pjs
- Donuts for breakfast
- Watch cartoons from your childhood
- Plant a pizza garden (basil, tomatoes, oregano, etc.)
- Go strawberry picking at a local farm
- Order in pasta from a local Italian restaurant
- Have each person learn 2 Italian phrases to speak at dinner
- Dine al fresco
- Breakfast from the kids’ favorite restaurant
- Visit local botanical garden
- Hire chef to have family cooking class at home
- Have mocktails while eating dessert (make yours a real cocktail)
Here’s a sample 3-day schedule without kids:
- Spa treatments
- Grab to-go dinner from Ethiopian restaurant
- Eat it in backyard while watching Sex and the City marathon
- Have s’mores with champagne
- Wear red dress and heels to get coffee
- Have coffee near water while writing affirmations
- Take a cheese board class
- Sip high-end bourbon while watching new film and eating cheese and charcuterie remnants
- Grab a boxed lunch from that little shop in town with the great sandwiches
- Go hiking in the Blue Ridge Mountains
- Have a picnic by a waterfall
- Pick apples from nearby farm
- Order dinner from French bistro and time it to arrive when you get home
- Eat dinner while watching virtual tour of the Louvre Museum before going to bed
This is your staycation and it should be personal to you. Do what you love and have a great time. Distance yourself from your usual stressors or distractions and let loose.
You can do this!