Keep your vacation as flexible as possible

Going to another country is often made out to be a very freeing experience. And it can certainly be that way. But can you honestly say that a lot of your vacations have felt that way? Most people seem to set themselves up for very restrictive holidays. They’re nowhere near as free as they think they are; they anchor themselves to itineraries, to other people, to particular possessions.

What this ends up doing is stressing you out a little, right? Let’s not pretend that all holidays are a walk in the park, even when they literally involve walking in parks. The amount of effort that goes into planning them, and the amount of things you have to worry about once you get there, can sometimes make the whole experience feel a little stifling.

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If you want to ensure that your travels are as freeing as possible, then check out this guide!

Don’t create a strict itinerary

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People are really eager to ensure they see everything they possibly can when they plan a vacation. If they’re going to New York City, then they’ll spend ages writing up a detailed itinerary, making sure they fit all the attractions on the list: the Rockefeller, the Empire State, Broadway, the Statue of Liberty, etc. You end up with very little in the way of leeway when you do this.

When you create a detailed itinerary, you’re tethering yourself to a particular schedule. While schedules can be very useful when it comes to making sure you see everything, they definitely stifle that feeling of freedom somewhat. So perhaps a strict itinerary isn’t the way to go.

Make no mistake: if there are things you really want to do, then consider setting specific days and times for them. But don’t go overboard. A schedule introduces stress and obligation. This is the last thing you need when you’re on holiday. You end up never just wandering around the place, getting a real feel for it, and heading to whatever attraction takes your fancy at that time. And that’s an important consideration: you may have planned, say, to go to the top of the Empire State building at 7pm on the dot on a Tuesday. But who’s to say you’ll feel up to it then?

Go solo

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Yes, holidays with friends and family are amazing. But let’s face it: when you to another country with someone else, you end up having to do a few things they want to do instead of doing everything you want to do. Which is fine, of course – it’s what you should do if you’re traveling with others!

But why not consider a solo holiday? A lot of people don’t think about such a thing, perhaps because it seems too daunting, especially if it’s a foreign country where they don’t speak the language. But there’s no denying the attraction to solo holidays. You get to be the boss of the holiday, after all! If you want to do something, then, provided you have the money (and its, y’know, legal), then you don’t have to ensure that it’s okay with everyone else.

If you do plan on going to another country by yourself, then it may be worth taking a bit more time to learn about the language and culture, simply because you won’t have any familiar faces to back you up. As long as you can keep yourself safe, then there’s little reason you shouldn’t travel alone. It can be a lot less stressful, and you can learn a lot more from your experience in the process.

Arrange your own transport

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No, that doesn’t mean “make your own arrangements”; it means you should arrange to have your own means of transport when you arrive at your destination. When we think of holidays, we often think of trains and cabs and buses. This can often rack up the total price by quite a lot, but it also creates a problem when it comes to freedom.

The argument could be made that allowing someone else to drive you around allows you a certain amount of freedom from the stress of finding your own way around, which can be time-consuming and daunting. And this may be true, to an extent. But when you have others driving you around, then you become reliant on other people for all your transport needs! This isn’t exactly ideal.

This is why you should consider renting your own vehicle for your holiday. This means you’re no longer tied to train timetables, bus schedules, and whether a cab driver is nearby (and nice enough to actually pick you up!). It also means you can stop the vehicle whenever you please if you want to check out something you’ve seen en route.

Travel guide: how to keep your vacation as flexible as possible

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