If you’re in need of a break, but don’t wish to spend up big, then a staycation could be the ideal holiday for you. A staycation is a holiday spent in one’s own home, during which you enjoy all that your home and nearby surrounds have to offer. A staycation is not about doing the chores or answering work calls from home – it should be a chance to unwind and relax, without forking out for expensive hotel rooms and overpriced holiday season flights.
The key to a successful staycation is in the preparation. Without a little planning your staycation could very well turn into just another weekend at home, so be sure to think of it like a holiday, minus the driving or flying time.
Step one: set a date
Just like with any other holiday, you need to plan ahead. Get out the calendar and set a period of time for your staycation which works for you.
Step two: inform everyone
If you were going away on holiday, you would tell your family, friends and workplace that you are intending to be out of town. The same goes for your staycation. Let everyone know that you will be on holiday and turning off your mobile phones during the dates you chose in step one. You don’t need to tell them you’re staying at home for your holiday, either. Just say you’re staying close by. It’s your holiday, and if your family or friends think you are just at home they may not respect your time out.
Step three: prepare your house
The day before your staycation, get your holiday accommodation ready. Clean the house, change the sheets, do your last load of washing and finish any chores which will nag at you if they don’t get done. This will help you to wake up on the first morning of your holiday with a clear conscience and a clean house. Avoid doing the big chores during your holiday – that load of washing can happen later, and the gutters are a job for another time, when you are no longer taking a break.
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Step four: disconnect
The night before your staycation, turn off your mobile phones, set the answering machine on your landline and log out of your email account. It’s easy to get sucked back into the real world, so make sure you give yourself the best chance of having a relaxing break. It can be a good idea to nominate one phone number as your emergency contact number, just in case someone desperately needs to get in touch with you. Let friends and family know which number this is, and explain that all your other phones will be offline during your holiday. If they call and it’s not a real emergency, feel free to let them know you’ll call them back when your holiday is over.
You are now ready to begin your staycation. If you aren’t in the groove of your holiday yet, a great way to get excited is to spend your first morning planning how you wish to spend your time. Keep in mind that this is a holiday – you can plan to sleep in, spend a day napping or sit and read a book. If you book up every hour of every day your holiday is going to feel as full-on as everyday life.
If, however, you do wish to go out and explore, here are some ideas for activities you may wish to incorporate in your staycation:
- Visit a museum or art gallery
- Travel to your nearest beach (don’t forget to take a picnic)
- Enjoy a bike ride around your local area
- Go to a movie (don’t forget the more unusual theatres, such as rooftop cinemas and the drive-in)
- See a show
- Read a book
- Learn a new hobby
- Go to an exercise class at your local gym
- Visit your local tourist centre for a list of popular tourist attractions, and possibly a few discounts
And, most importantly, don’t forget to relax!
Have you had a successful staycation? Share how you ensured your holiday at home was fun and relaxing, or, if it was a disaster, what would you do differently next time?