While borders remain largely closed around the world and people get behind on their bills, the idea of an expensive vacation abroad seems more and more distant. Domestic travel might still be possible (though ill-advised in some areas), so the only other alternative is to make the best of a staycation at home. If that sounds like a snooze-fest, maybe you just need some tips on how to make a staycation feel like a vacation.
Do the things your city is known for
Most people are incredibly unappreciative of everything they have access to all the time. Since those museums and national parks and tourist attractions are always there, we tend to take them for granted. That’s why we might live for decades in New York without ever going to the Statue of Liberty. Just because you’re lucky enough to live in a city that other people go out of their way to visit doesn’t mean you should be above those tourist attractions. And given that everyone is staying in their own cities for the time being, there’s never been a better time to do some sightseeing in your own city. Everything will be empty and as a local resident, you might even be able to visit at a discount or for free.
Go to new bars and restaurants
A staycation will never feel like a vacation if you only ever go to the same eateries and bars that you frequent all the time. What sets apart a vacation in another place from a staycation at home is that you’re doing all new things the entire time. So if you want your staycation to feel like a vacation, you should try going only to places you haven’t been before. Try a new restaurant or an entirely new cuisine. Go on TripAdvisor and check out all the best rated places you’ve been missing out on because you only ever go out to eat at the same three places.
Don’t mix errands and housework into your staycation
If you’re going to take a proper staycation, you need to drop all the normal stuff that normally takes up your time at home. Pretend you just landed in a new country and laundry doesn’t exist, groceries don’t exist, and you don’t have to worry about picking up around the house. Set aside a day or a weekend to just do enjoyable things in your city without swinging by the post office in the middle of your day (unless it’s to send someone a postcard). Leave your errands for another time.
Check out travel blogs for your own city
Tourists have a unique perspective of your city because they see things you usually don’t have time for or interest in. So take a look at how people who visit your town structure their day. What are their itineraries? What areas do they spend the most time in? What museums do they think are most interesting? What attractions are considered hidden gems? You might discover a lot of cool things you’ve never heard of or you had always brushed off as tourist stuff. Don’t neglect tourist stuff. People don’t come from thousands of miles away and spend a ton of hard-earned money to have a bad time.
Don’t be lazy about it. Commit to your staycation!
One way that a vacation usually feels different from a staycation is that we don’t normally plan a full day of activities at home; we get lazy at home. If you went for a long bike ride in a national park in the morning, you probably won’t do anything the rest of the day. So rally during your staycation like you normally do during a vacation. Walk the equivalent of a marathon and then have a coffee and a shower and find the energy to go to a beer garden instead of sliding back into Netflix for the night. That’s what you’d do on vacation, so it’s how you should plan your staycation.