Everyone needs a little time off, but sometimes factors like economic troubles and the hassle of travelling with small children make it easier to vacation in your home town instead of travelling afar.
Photo by jaynefury.
It might sound like blasphemy to suggest vacationing without going anywhere, but when the cost of airline tickets or fuel is factored in and the actual hassle of traveling—especially if you have young kids— is factored in, planning a staycation starts to look pretty appealing. What makes a staycation?
Consumer Reports interviewed Matt Wixon, the author of The Great American Staycation, to get the low down on the staycation phenomenon. Matt offers the following definition and bundle of advice about staycations:
A vacation in which the vacationer stays at home, or near home, while creating the environment of a traditional vacation. "Creating the environment of a traditional vacation" is the important part. It means getting out of the rut of your daily life. It means not planning a stay-at-home vacation that combines leisure time with cleaning out the garage, building bookshelves and a trip to get the car repaired. In my own experiences, and from the staycationers I talked to for the book, I learned that the best staycations come from people who treat a staycation like a real vacation by planning it ahead of time, taking care of as many household projects and chores before the staycation begins, and knowing how to feel like you are splurging even when you're saving money.
You might protest the idea of taking a vacation without travelling to see new things, but you won't hear a peep from me. While recently planning for an out-of-state visitor, I turned to the local visitors bureau to find some interesting things for my guest to do. I'll fully confess to be being a tad embarrassed looking over the extensive and interesting list of museums, art galleries, vineyards, restaurants and other local treats I've never visited.
Check out the full interview with Matt for more information and a list of suggested—and frequently overlooked—activities for a fun staycation. Whether you love staycations or consider them an outrageous idea, we want to hear about it in the comments below.
Tips for the Best 'Staycation' Ever [Consumer Reports]