10 steps to Staycation Success

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Holiday in your hometown? How could that be relaxing?

More than a half of Americans don’t take the vacation leave they are entitled to. The cost of travel is one of the reasons cited for this vacation shortfall. But taking a vacation needn’t be expensive: you don’t need to travel halfway around the world to discover new things, places or people.

If you go in with the right attitude, a staycation can be just as rewarding and rejuvenating as an exotic getaway.

1# Identify sources of stress

According to the American Psychological Association, a vacation works by giving you a break from the environments and activities that typically cause you stress. Identify those things in your working life which cause you stress – driving in rush-hour traffic, for example – so you can make a conscious effort to avoid them during your staycation.

2# Clear the decks

There’s no point staying at home when you’re surrounded by a towering ironing pile, laundry basket from hell, or a plethora of housekeeping jobs.

Try to clear the decks in advance so your vacation environment is as relaxing as it can be. Perhaps you can treat yourself to a housekeeping service for the week? And make sure friends, family, and colleagues know that being on staycation doesn’t mean you’re available to pick up errands and jobs for them.

3# Set a budget

One of the best things about taking a staycation is the money you will save. At the end of your staycation, you will be able to return to work without the usual crippling financial overspend you experience after a vacation away. However, you should allow yourself a realistic budget so you can indulge in some activities and treats you wouldn’t usually try.

4# Adopt a vacation mindset

You might be at home, but you’re on vacation. What do you usually look forward to and enjoy when you go away? How can you pursue these interests in your hometown environs in a way you wouldn’t normally?

5# Check out your town’s visitor guide

If you need ideas, visit your town’s visitor website and check out the tours and amenities that a visitor would experience – there’s sure to be activities on there you’ve never tried before, many of which will be free. Taking a walking tour or a photography tour of your city can reveal new sides to it you may not have discovered before.

6# Do things just for fun

You don’t need to have a “purpose” for your staycation activities; approach them as you would on vacation. Don’t forget to indulge in things just for the sheer pleasure of them. Do them as the mood takes you and enjoy!

7# Break from the norms

A staycation is a great opportunity to check out all the new restaurants, galleries, bars and other unique places you don’t get the chance to visit during a typical work week. Plus, the opportunity of visiting local parks and attractions during quieter mid-week moments, without the usual weekend crowds, can offer a really different perspective and entirely different experience.

8# Allow some treats

Since you’re not blowing the budget on an expensive vacation, why not book into a local hotel for the night and check out that roof-top pool you’ve heard so much about?

9# Offload the kids for a day or two

The great thing about vacationing in your hometown is you have access to all your usual support network. Book your babysitter, or send the kids to Grandma’s for a couple of days so you can enjoy some grown-up fun as well.

10# Don’t over-pack your schedule

It might be tempting to schedule lots of activities into your week – but relax; you’re on staycation. You can roll out of bed in the afternoon if you like or let the whole family take a pajama day.

Your hometown might not be as instantly instagrammable as a palm tree swaying next to a soft white-sand beach in Thailand, but it can be just as fun and relaxing.