Part 5: Traveling Post-Grad!

Welcome back, everyone! Let’s continue investigating a wide variety of topics relating to experiences post-grad. Even if you’re graduating from a different milestone like high school, graduate school, or a Ph.D., this article relates to your next step too! Many of us seek out travel experiences when we are in between ‘life moments’. If you are fortunate enough to participate in traveling around the country, the state, or the world, keep reading below to find out how to initiate a large trip.

Selecting a Destination Spot on your Trip!

  • Evaluate the Trip You’re Seeking: The first step of planning your trip comes down to deciding what kind of trip you’re seeking: a relaxing vacation, cultural exploration, historical journey, etc… Once you’ve got that idea down, you’ll have a much easier time narrowing in on a location. If you’re traveling with friends, make sure to engage in a group meeting to discuss everyone’s opinions and what they are seeking out of the experience before moving forward with booking flights or hotels. An extra tip we would encourage you to do is set expectations on delegation of tasks – will one person book the flights? Another person the hotel? Another in charge of reservations? Whatever this looks like for your group, splitting up responsibilities is a great way to keep everyone involved and the workload of trip-planning balanced.
  • Compare Flight Costs: Especially if you don’t have a deadline for which you must be back home, we encourage you to be flexible in selecting the dates for your travel well in advance, so as to take advantage of the most cost-effective options. A quick Google flight search will help you compare your flight costs depending on a variety of weekends. If there is a large gap in price from one weekend vs. a few more weekends out, it may be beneficial to delay that certain location to a future date.
  • Check Airbnb or Hotel Availability: Before jumping into the planning stage, it’s crucial to check for availability and places to stay. This may lead you to a hostel, hotel, or Airbnb, but you must check these out before booking flights as there are large price changes on weekends for flights, and high fluctuations in lodging costs.

*Always try to book flights and lodging as far in advance as possible! Although it sometimes appears like a hassle or is easily procrastinated, you always save money and a headache by doing so.

Planning Ahead…

  • Second Trip Evaluation: Now that you’re in the “fun” stage and the main logistics are figured out, it’s time for your second evaluation. Discuss amongst yourself or your group the way you’d like to structure your day-to-day itinerary – do you want a jam-packed weekend full of sightseeing, a relaxing few days to chill out, or a “go with the flow” walk through a new city? Whichever of these types of trips you choose, it’s time to start scheduling a loose structure of each day plan to secure tours, tickets, reservations, and more!
  • Itinerary: An aspect of weekend travel that I became aware of quite immediately was the benefit of mapping the distance between sites you want to see EARLY ON! This is an easy mistake to avoid, as accidentally placing two locations that are far away from each other back-to-back on an itinerary may lead you to lose several hours of the few days you have… So, start looking into certain shops, experiences, tours, sites, restaurants, or other places you’re hoping to see and how they are spaced amongst one another before touching down on your trip.
  • Budget! Finally, it is always important to maintain an awareness of your spending on each trip. Some places are inherently more expensive than others, so saving costs on lodging/travel vs. picking up souvenirs are great ways to stay in line with a similar budget on each trip.

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