Ask someone to share their hopes and dreams with you, and the odds are high they’ll include at least one or two travel goals in their list. There are a number of different reasons why people travel, but for the most part, it boils down to the fact that many of us crave new and exciting experiences – and there aren’t too many things more exciting than visiting a totally new place for the first time.
Regardless of what your travel goals may be, they can sometimes feel out of reach. While there are tons of advantages of traveling, many people focus on the negatives – the price of the flight, the language barrier, the unfamiliar and sometimes scary environment – and talk themselves out of pursuing their dreams. Fortunately, with a little effort and preparation, virtually anyone can chase their travel dreams and see the world.
Here’s How You Can Make it Happen and Achieve Your Travel Goals:
1. Define your goals. The first step to achieve your travel goals? You need to define them. Chasing a moving target is virtually impossible, so give yourself something tangible to work toward.
To start the process, ask yourself a few questions. Where do you want to go? What do you want to see? Is there a food you’ve always wanted to try, a musical performer you’re dying to see live or a monument you couldn’t imagine glimpsing in person? Find inspiration in your favorite books and movies, pictures on the internet, anecdotes from friends and family – there’s no wrong way to find the inspiration for your next trip!
In fact, you may even find travel inspiration in goals that have nothing to do with your next vacation. Maybe you’ve set a personal goal to try new foods, to learn a new language, or to meet new people. One of the advantages of traveling is that you’ll find opportunities to do all of these things – and more – if you plan your trips right.
2. Save aggressively. For many people, one of the biggest barriers to travel is the cost of the trip. Most people consider travel to be an expensive hobby, and for the most part, they’re correct. Many popular destinations aren’t particularly cheap or easy to reach. Choose a well-loved tourist destination to visit, and you may be surprised to see just how much everything can cost.
This is why so many people love to travel to smaller, lesser-known destinations. One of the advantages of traveling to less popular destinations? You’ll find lower prices on virtually everything, from your flight and hotel to tours, museums, and other attractions.
Regardless of whether you’ve got your eye on affordable or expensive travel destinations, you’ll still need to cover the cost of your trip, and that likely means coming up with some extra cash. Fortunately, there are a few ways to save for your trip:
Tip To Help You Achieve Your Travel Goals
- Start with your paycheck! See if you can hold back a percentage of your paycheck, however small, to pay for travel for you. Your employer may be able to automatically deposit part of your pay into a separate saving account, which can make this even easier. Saving as little as $10 or $25 from each paycheck will add up over time and give you the cash you need to travel.
- Sell your stuff. Getting rid of things you no longer need can serve multiple purposes. Not only will you clear out your clutter and clean your space, but you’ll also wind up with some extra cash in your pocket. Depending on how much stuff you have and what you’re willing to give up, you could walk away with a significant amount of cash to put toward a vacation.
- Don’t ignore the side hustle! Many people are so determined to travel they’ll do whatever it takes to save up the money they need to see the world. Whether you can take on overtime at your current job, put one of your skills to use as a freelancer, or seek out small jobs like babysitting and dog-walking, find a way to earn a few extra dollars (or more) to save for your next trip.
However you choose to fund your travels, you’ll likely need a little bit of time to make it happen. Create a plan and put it into place ASAP!
3. Make time to travel. You can set your goals and save your money, but you’ll have a hard time achieving your travel goals if you can’t actually take time out of your busy schedule to visit those bucket list destinations. Don’t let yourself get so bogged down in your career that you can’t take the time you need to relax, recharge, and cure your travel bug – and try to steer clear of companies that cap your sick and vacation days at an unreasonably low number.
Instead, make it a priority to find an employer that supports your travel goals through friendly time-off policies. There are lots of companies out there that offer flexible (or unlimited) vacation time, and some even provide travel stipends for employees eager to explore the world.
And if that isn’t an option? See what you can do to maximize your time under your current system. Even if you’re capped at taking one week off at a time, that’s a whole week to experience a new place – potentially a whole new country.
And if you don’t feel like you have enough time to get your money’s worth from an international trip, there are plenty of advantages of traveling domestically. While you may not collect a stamp on your passport, you’ll still likely find plenty of new and exciting experiences to enjoy while you’re there.
Achieving your travel goals doesn’t have to be as difficult as some make it out to be. As long as you know what you’re working toward, save the funds you need to pay for your trip and find the time to make it happen, you’ll be well on your way to chasing your travel dreams.
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