Part of my travel identity, at this point in my travel career, is the identity of a weekend traveler. I’ve spent a lot of years traveling for short periods of time, and I’ve noticed major impacts on how I view travel, prepare for it and use it to better my life. And so I thought I could share what I’ve learned to fellow weekend travelers! I also think this advice is universal and will hold true no matter if you’re a weekend traveler or a long-term backpacker.
1. Pack Light
The first tip I tell people and practice myself is, pack light always. This simple act has saved me time, money and most of all my sanity! This may be easier for men to do, as we usually carry less than the average woman, however most people, including women, bring way too much in general. And really most people don’t use 25% of what they bring. It’s a weekend trip; you don’t need to bring 5 pairs of jeans and shoes! Use ShawnVoyage, organize yourself and pack with more authority. You’ll soon realize that you’ve probably been taking way too much.
Check out this page for more in-depth ways on packing light.
2. Eat and Drink Better
Eating junk/crap food is not the best way to start any type of weekend trip. Start with your health, like what kind of food you eat, what you drink and how much you exercise. It will determine how you feel on any trip you take.
And this is in your control, this is something that is possible to change. Even drinking clean water, greens and light local food will drastically make a difference. No longer will you be dehydrated, sick while traveling, or feeling bloated on planes. Which for weekend travelers is a big deal!
The truth for successful weekend travelers is that they are extremely organized and know how to be. They know how to throw away unnecessary things and keep the essentials. Just having a simple system could really mean the difference from a stressful trip to a relaxing one. For other people this fact alone would be a lot of work but the rewards for being organized are well worth it.
On top of that, it’s helpful to be organized with your finances and your schedule. Keep these aligned well and you be efficient with your weekend trips; still being able to lead a normal life.
Your focus should be on editing your life, focus on saving lots of money, and organizing and monitoring only the essential things you will need. Everything else is arbitrary and doesn’t matter. Weekend travel is about being free and you can’t do that with a lot of stuff. I wrote on how “Great Travel is About Editing,” and “An Organized Travel Bag.”
4. Change Outdated Views
Probably the best thing any traveler can do is change how they view the rest of the world especially when it comes to other people. You know how people say that you can’t really change anything around you, you can only change yourself? This applies here.
You’re not going to change the world but you can change yourself. You can change what upsets you, and how you interact with everything that happens to you. Will you let the hotel room next to an elevator annoy you for your entire trip; will you think about the future or the past instead of staying in the moment? Things won’t always go your way but the best travelers let all that go, focus on the things that really matter. Here’s more about changing your views and “How to Travel with an Open Mind.”
5. Letting it Go
This one is a little more obscure and harder to quantify but bare with me. Many people restrict themselves from traveling and this is obviously detrimental. Allow yourself to do what you want to do. If you want to book a flight for a weekend by yourself, why not? If you want to discover a different city just for a couple of days, why not?
You have to allow yourself to go. You have to say yes more than no. You could have a million hardships and never have the right time to do what you want. Eventually you have to say, “I’m going to do this because I want to.” You’ll do it because it’s what you’re meant to do and it’s there for the taking. After you let go and say yes, the rest comes easier and your weekend travels are more involved, more relaxing and more enhanced.
I’ve been at this for a couple of years and these are just a few important tips I’ve learned along the way. Most importantly is that I must always continue to travel because it’s something I love. The greatest tip is to follow you passion, be humble about it and learn from everything that happens to you, good or bad.
images by: robert