The new year brings hope and optimism that is unfortunately often lost during other times of the year. It’s a fresh start, a chance for a do-over, if you will—a blank slate. If you are one to make resolutions, chances are that they might center around getting healthier and exercising more. Perhaps you’re resolving to cut something from your life: cigarettes, carbs, negativity, drama. I applaud you for your efforts. Cutting any of these things out is no easy task.
Today, I am offering you a few different resolutions to consider. I want to provide you with some travel resolutions. Statistics show that travel is increasing for 2024, and will exceed pre-pandemic levels. Are you one of them? Read on and consider all the resolutions below. Some may speak to you more than others, so pick and choose what you like, and by this time next year, we’ll all be savvier travelers.
Resolve to Take That Trip
The first and most important of travel resolutions is to, well, resolve to take that trip! How many times have you said to yourself, “Someday I will visit…. (enter that special destination here) and that someday never comes? Or it continues to be delayed or compromised in some fashion? While I hope that “that trip” for you is to Italy, the fact of the matter is that if you want to travel anywhere and expand your horizons, you just must book that trip. Use that vacation time that’s been accruing, or invest some of that retirement fund on travel. After all, you worked hard for it! Make a resolution this year to finally take that trip.
Resolve to Get Your Paperwork in Order
My credit card expired on December 31st, and I didn’t have my new card. I called the company, and to my surprise, my new card wasn’t lost in the holiday mail as I had expected; they hadn’t sent it to me because I didn’t request one! Since when have credit card companies waited for the customer to request a new card? I wouldn’t have even realized this unless Amazon informed me that my Prime membership couldn’t be renewed! Credit cards, passports, driver’s licenses, your global entry pass – all things you must ensure are up to date when traveling. Resolve to check everything and check it twice. And regarding your passport, ensure you have at least six months of validity on it.
Resolve to Pack Light(er)
This is one resolution I keep making myself all the time and seem to fail at with each trip. But for the first time this past December, I traveled to Italy with a carry-on only! Knowing with 100% certainty that my luggage would make it there was an incredible relief! There was this weight off my shoulders during the whole flight. But this was a quick trip; sometimes, a carry-on only simply isn’t an option. But traveling light(er) always is. I can’t tell you how many articles of clothing usually go unworn or health and beauty products go unused during each trip. Traveling lighter means having fewer things to keep track of, and less packing and unpacking. It also saves you money since most airlines now charge for the first checked luggage, or surely, the second checked luggage. So, pack wisely and as light as you can. And I will try again during my next trip. After all, there is no shame in wearing the same thing twice and washing some clothing in the bathroom sink.
Resolve to Protect Your Investment
Travel is an investment. Travel costs money, time, and effort, and like anything of high value, it deserves protection. Sign up for traveler’s insurance when you commit to any trip. As soon as you have any money down, that’s when you absolutely must sign up for insurance. Having to cancel any trip is a source of significant disappointment. Having to cancel a trip and lose money on it is just avoidable with insurance. I refer my clients to this website, which compares major carriers and allows you to select the best option for your needs. But you can use any agency you like. Even your credit card may have some form of traveler’s insurance. Resolve to buy traveler’s insurance for all your future trips, even within the U.S.
Resolve to Staying Healthy While Traveling
Should I pack all my vitamins? Is one missed dose of the medication I left at the hotel going to kill me? Do I really need sunblock? Is one more glass of wine going to put me over the edge? Can one more cappuccino replace that glass of water? I get it, really, I do. The best part of traveling is that it takes us away from our daily routine and daily life. But there are some things we can’t bypass because we’re on vacation. Getting sick while traveling is no fun. Been there, done that. And I realize that some things surely are out of our hands. But we must try to maintain a healthy lifestyle as much as possible while traveling. So, take your meds, slather on that sunblock, drink your water, and use that hand sanitizer. You’re doing your part in decreasing your chances of getting sick.
And make sure to build in some downtime during your travels. Over-exhaustion can wear you down, tire you out, and get you sick like nothing else. I’ve been there and done that, too! I balance our tours so that there is some downtime during our day, and that our late nights don’t precede our early days.
Resolve to Visit at Least One New Location
In 2024, resolve to visit at least one new location. I have a few new cities on my list for 2024, and I look forward to sharing them with you soon. But know that one new location needn’t be an entirely new country or even an entirely new region. Traveling and exploring doesn’t always need to include an airplane, luggage, and lots of time away from work. If getting on a plane is out of the cards for you this year, resolve to explore more locally. Travel to a local museum, aquarium, or zoo. Try a new restaurant you’ve never heard of. Better yet, try an entirely new cuisine. A change of scenery, even a quick day trip or visit, will do wonders for your mind, body, and spirit.
Resolve to Complain Less
Let’s face it: Travel comes with its own inherent risk. Delayed flights, lost connections, misplaced luggage, getting rerouted, a less than stellar meal, a disappointing experience here or there. These are just a few mishaps that can arise during your travels. But guess what? You have your health that allows you to travel. You have the financial resources that allow you to travel. And you’re in a new destination you had previously just dreamed about. Will anything you complain about today matter in the long run? Most likely not. Adept a “go with the flow” mentality; I guarantee you’ll enjoy your trip much more.
Resolve to Relax
Much like the above, try relaxing as much as possible while traveling. Embrace the moment, make memories, live in the present. Someday, this will all be a memory. You’ll recall it better if you’re embracing where you are at.
This is something I sometimes had a hard time doing myself, especially when I’m leading a tour. I confess that I wasn’t relaxed when I started running my business. I only relaxed at the end of the trip, when everyone went home happy, safely, and full of memories! When the trip went exactly as I had planned, that’s when I was able to relax! During any experience, I would always be worried about the next one. Will the driver be on time? What about the weather, would it hold? Will the restaurant server be friendly? Will the group enjoy tomorrow’s experience? I was worried all.the.time. I realized this mentality pulled me away from the joy I wanted to experience with my travel companions. And it likely was evident on them, which I wanted to try and avoid. After several years of running my trips, I have learned to relax a lot more and live and enjoy the moment as much as possible along with my clients.
Traveling is one of life’s greatest joys, at least for me. And if you’re reading this today, chances are, it is for you as well. Traveling broadens our horizons, our lives, and our well-being. So, resolve to travel in 2024, and do it better with these easy to follow travel resolutions!
What to Pack for Italy
Cosa Mettere in Valigia per l'Italia
Everyone is always asking me what they should pack for Italy,
so I’ve created a quick reference guide that you can use for your next trip.
Hint: You don’t need nearly as much as you think you do!