How To Face Your Demons & Take The Leap To Travel
07.04.2016 - 14.04.2016
Everyone wants to travel more—it’s just the reality of being a human being. We’ve got this natural inclination to pick up our bags and head out of town.
I know your type. You’re the kind that has every travel quote on your wall, from “The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page” and “Not all who wander are lost,” and every backdated Cereal publication you could get your hands on. You decorate your room with globes and maps and airplanes, and visit the kind of shops that harken to French Country interiors or Moroccan tea rooms. You’re the travel kind. Except you never take a break. You never actually get out.
There’s a lot of things standing in your way: bills, mortgage, kids, work, puppy, projects, cars, etc. But you’ve seen other people travel and they seem to manage it...right?
But to you it’s different: how do you take a break when you’ve got all these responsibilities, work projects, and lack of plentiful funds?
You plan carefully, and you make sure even if a couple of things go wrong, you head out of town anyway.
Learning how to take the right steps to branching out and taking the leap out into the great wide world is as easy as these 5 steps...so get to getting. You’re one step closer to your dream vacation, and trust me, it’s never been easier.
1. Give your boss plenty of prior notice.
Two months notice isn’t too early, it’s how you build the foundation that you’re going to check out. The closer you get, the harder it will be to firmly plan into everyone’s mind that you’re going to be out of the building. Even then, they’re still likely to send you emails and ask you to update things because that’s just the nature of business these days. Resist! When you check out, check out. It’s the only way to really take a break.
And speaking of, maybe put your vacation on your calendar 6 months out and send monthly reminders just to keep everyone on their toes. You can never be too careful.
2. Make sure you’ve always got a passport with a year on it.
I easily think having a valid passport is the greatest thing that a person can have. How else are you supposed to travel the world? And, while you may be puzzled as to why I think you need a year on it—hear me out.
Many countries won’t let you leave your home country, or enter a new country, unless you’ve got at least 6 months, and when I think about it, a year is just a way to be better safe then sorry. Sure, I have no idea why they won’t let you travel right up until your expiration date, but that’s only for me to complain about and not actually do anything about (because the government isn’t likely listening to me, right? If you are, this is a crazy rule!).
So in most places you can safely start applying for a replacement anywhere from 1 year to 9 months before your expiration date, and I definitely suggest that since only the cosmos knows how long it will take for you to get it back.
3. Apply for a travel rewards credit card.
Some people will tell you not to travel with a credit card, and it’s better to pay with everything up front and just take cash so you don’t overspend. I am not one of those people.
Sure, I know it’s important that you stay on budget when you travel, but I also know that it’s a great backup to have whenever you’re travelling if something unexpected comes up. Plus, the great thing about credit cards nowadays is that if you can pay the bill, then you’re getting paid to use the card. Everyone from Mastercard to Visa are offering rewards in the millions for people booking flights, hotels, having dinner at restaurants, renting cars, you name it. So before you head out, make sure you get a piece of plastic to go with you—it’s pretty good at coming in handy.
4. Get the travel brain.
Think you know the travel brain? The one who downloads all the apps and reads all the guides and maps note of all the best places to eat? Hardly. The travel brain is so much more simple (and difficult than that).
Getting into travel mode is more than just being prepared for travel, it’s getting your prepared for the unexpected, so it’s much more involved than just figuring out what place is good for coffee near your Airbnb.
I want you to get comfortable talking to strangers, being lost in a foreign city and keeping you calm long enough to figure out the right direction, making last minute changes because of weather. Those are the kind of skills that need cultivating when you’re about to head off to travel, and the good news is that if you’re able to talk to a complete stranger in a bar, and keep up the conversation for more than 5 minutes, you’re probably ready to handle it. Quick thinking is what travellers need most of all, and a conversation is a good way to test those skills.
Think you need a refresher? Try these attractioninstitute.com/how-to-get-out-of-your-head-and-stay-out/ (< ERROR: the link title is too long!). They’re better than just getting a good talk going.
5. Save $20 a week.
Every budget needs a squash fund, and if you start saving $20 a week, you’ll have $1000 by the end of the year. It’s a great way to refresh the coiffures without actually being super savvy—you just need a jar, a little willpower, and maybe some forgetful charms so you can actually leave that money in the jar even during an emergency. Trust me, those dollars will be well spent on travelling! Don’t dip into it for anything!
At the end of the day, getting out of your routine and into travel mode is really as easy as pie—it’s just down to making the right prep changes so that when the time comes, you’re raring and ready to go. So get out, go! And bon voyage!