Tuesday, 15 November 2016

How To Complete Your Travel Checklist In A Day Or Less

So on my travels I spent between 24 and 48 hours in each place apart from my last stop therefore I gained a real talent for managing to tick off my to do list whilst I was away.
Not matter where you are travelling to you will have a list of things in mind that you would like to do or see. Sometimes we can be limited by time, maybe it's a mini break or possibly you like me could be travelling across the country (or world if you are super brave). 

Research

The more you do before you go the less you have to do when you are there. Once you know where you are going on holiday, research the place. I often look at articles like "Things to do in _" or something along those lines to get a grasp of the area and write down things I like the sound of. Some places have names you may not be able to remember what exactly it is so I would recommend you writing a short descriptive sentence of each thing to remind yourself. Take it from people who have been and experienced the place they often have the best tips to help you from the mistakes or misfortunes that they learnt during their time there. 


Organisation

This ties in perfectly to the first one as research automatically makes you more organised. Being full of knowledge on the do's and don'ts will save you a lot of hassle and make your day go as smoothly as possible. There is only so much you can do online and some things you find out when you are there. For example when I went to Rome I left The Vatican to the next morning only to find out that the queue alone first thing in the morning was around an hour the the guided tours from 9:00am would take me up until lunch time. This is something I wouldn't have known before hand therefore something I didn't see fully due to my flight. 

You need to keep track of time because some days I would be ahead of schedule and others slightly behind. Balancing out where you end up spending more time is essential because you don't want to miss out on other opportunities. Like I mentioned in my 'How To Do Rome In 24 Hours' post getting a map is key to getting yourself around independently. In most places I was offered one at the place I stayed and in Rome they actually circled all the key places to go and marked the ways of getting there - making my life a hell of a lot easier. Planning a route from one place to another saves time and ensures you aren't going round in circles wasting precious time. 

Keep your documents safe and everything packed neatly. You want to be able to find things when you need to and not have that panic of not being able to find your passport, boarding pass etc. Ensuring everything has a place and keeping it there will keep you calm and on top of your game - repeat after me, I will not get stressed over something small on this holiday, I am in control. 

Realistic

Wherever you are travelling to may have a list 25 things you would love to do from monuments, restaurants, entertainment and more but you need to think is it possible? If there is 25 things that are small and across the road from each other then go for it, if not you need to prioritise. Have set things that you would be devastated if you didn't do them at the top of your list and then if you have spare time at the end you can use it for some other things. You'll be surprised how many things you cross on the way to somewhere, especially when walking! You may find a place that entices you in and makes off schedule like I did with the 'Alter of the Fatherland' but they could be the best things you do, so don't pack yourself in too tight. Give time for little breaks and pitstops as well as time for food because otherwise you'll burn out before the end of the day. For each place I visited in Italy I had around 4-6 places on my must-see list per city, which I can fully commit to saying was achievable in the time I had.


Compromise

These clearly all link together but I think the most important is the hardest one to do. Somewhere along the trip something may not go to plan therefore you maybe placed in a position where you will need to adapt what you were doing. As I said earlier I compromised only seeing The Vatican from the outside and a number of other churches in other cities to be able to do things that had a higher point of interest to me right now. It's not that I wouldn't have loved to go inside but things such as this particular tourist destination can be timely (approximately half a day apparently) meaning I would have to do less of the other things I wanted. This is where you have to make a decision about what you would prefer to do and see, unfortunately it's near enough impossible to do everything we want. Plus for me I think something as intricate and large in scale I would hate to rush myself through it just for the sake of it. I look at is as an incentive to go back and something I can visit hopefully another time, when in Rome huh. 
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I hope you have a fantastic holiday where ever in the world you are jetting off to or maybe even a staycation. I've done my job if this aids the planning of your trip in any shape or form - let me know where you are going in the comments, I'm jealous already got the travel bug real bad at the minute!

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