It goes without saying, we’re all busy people. Sometimes, that makes finding time to travel more difficult.
But, fear not my friends. With a little insight from someone who has made an artform out of finding time to travel while working a full time job and running this blog, you’ll be jetting off somewhere new in no time.
With that, I ask you to approach my tips for finding time to travel with an open mind. Sometimes, to get one thing we have to give up another. That’s just a part of life.
It’s how you approach it that makes all the difference.
10 Tips for Finding Time to Travel
Unfortunately, there’s just not enough time and money to have it all. Unless you’re rich, in which case, I’m not sure why you’re reading this blog post, but I’m happy to have you here anyway. Also, can we be friends? Just kidding.
Moving on. So what do I mean by sacrifice? Well, this will be different for everybody, but what I mean is this. If you plan to work a full time job, be in a weekly running club, volunteer at the local shelter, do stand up at the comedy club on weekends, be a parent to four children, have a partner, have a mortgage, and have 3 dogs, you may need to think about which of these things needs to go, or at least recieve less attention. (Probably not the kids, and definitely not the dogs!)
Here’s are a few examples of sacrifice from my own life.
- Instead of having my deam house by the beach in San Diego, I rent a room in someone else’s house in a Los Angeles suburb. I sacrifice some freedom and privacy, but in return I receive very low rent.
- Instead of getting married and having children, I decided to not get married and adopt a dog. I sacrifice the joys of raising a family, but in return I have freedom and the companionship of my weiner dog Melvin. I also save a ton of money not raising children.
- Instead of stocking my closet full of all the latest fashion trends, I wear the same old jeans and t shirts year after year. I sacrifice fashion, but in return I save a ton of money and don’t have to go to the mall. Totally worth it.
So what I’m saying is, make your life your own. If you really want to travel, and that’s what brings you joy, make it happen. Don’t be afraid to customize your life to suit yourself.
If you want to find time to travel in a busy life, you’ll need to make it a priority. If you don’t, your travel plans will get buried under all the other things you’ve got to do.
Set out to commit to your travel plans at the beginning of the year by scheduling your time off and making your reservations as soon as you identify where and when you’d like to travel. (As we’ve all recently learned, make sure the reservations are refundable!)
Once you’ve committed to your trip(s), you won’t be left scrambling to find the time to travel later in the year when your schedule is all jam packed with too many things to do.
The key to finding the best opportunities and time to travel is to strategize. Look at the weeks and months ahead and identify opportunites you could take advantage of.
Here are a few questions to ask yourself as you seek to identify opportunities for travel:
- Are there any holidays coming up that give you a long weekend?
- Are you attending any events in a destination that may be a good jumping off point for another destination?
- Is there a certain time of the year when you’ll be less busy and have more free time?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, don’t let the opportunity go to waste. Plan that all inclusive Riviera vacation or that weekend getaway to Europe before it’s too late.
4. Learn to say yes
Now that you’ve identified where your opportunities are, you’ve got to learn to say yes.
Don’t chicken out or talk youself out of doing something fun. We do this way too much in our lives, and now is not that time.
Learn to seize these opportunities so you can get to planning that Caribbean cruise you’ve always wanted to take.
Now that you’ve learned to say yes to the opportunities that come your way, it’s time to maximize.
What do I mean by maximize? Well I’m glad you asked.
If you want to add more time to travel in your busy lifestyle, you’re goint to need to maximize the time you already have. In order to this, you’ll want to consider the following:
- Take advantage of long weekends
- Take advantage of holidays
- Take redeye flights to save precious vacation time
- Take advantage of opportunites to work remotely if possible
If you learn to use the tips above effectively to maximize any time you already have, you won’t drain your vacation time while in transit. The key is to take as many trips as possible while using as little vacation time as possible.
Save that vacation time for when you really want to relax and linger in a new destination. You know, like the Maldives or something.
5. Get creative
One of the best ways to help you identify additional time to travel is to allow yourself to get creative.
When looking for opportunities to add more travel to your life, you’ve gotta be open minded and willing to consider destinations and adventures you may not have thought of before.
Don’t get stuck in the outdated way of thinking that says if you’re going to go somewhere far, you’ve gotta stay for two weeks or longer to make it worth it. No you don’t!!
A redeye flight and a three day weekend is plenty of time for a short trip to Europe. You could also do a weekend in Canada or Central America.
If you wanna see the world, you’ve got to be willing to make it work. And sometimes, making it work means booking an impromptu weekend getaway to Paris. Trust me, it’s worth it.
6. Learn to say no
Learning to say no is another important strategy to finding more time to travel
You must learn to turn down invitations to birthday parties, events, get togethers, and anything else you just don’t want to do.
These types of commitments can really eat into your free time making it hard to find time for yourself with an already busy life.
If you’ve committed to children’s birthday parties and happy hours every weekend of the year, you’re never going to find the time to travel and do the things you love.
Just say no.
8. Remain Flexible
Above all else, if you want to travel more, remain flexible. You never know when a travel opportunity will come up. If you can, be willing to take trips with others on a moments notice, be open to new destinations, be willing to do things you may not have ever considered doing before.
Last minute travel opportunities, especially ones you never expected, often lead to some of life’s greatest adventures. Don’t miss your chance have one.
9. Don’t accumulate debt
If you make the mistake of accumulating a ton of debt in your life, you’re never going to find time to travel. Instead, you’ll be stressed out trying to figure out how you can make more money to pay off all that debt.
Always keep your credit card balances at zero and live within your means. And yes, you can still travel, even with a budget. You may not be staying at the Four Seasons, but the Marriott and Holiday Inn are fine too.
I mean, would you turn down a weekend in Paris or Barcelona just because you had to stay at the Holiday Inn? Heck no. So just make reasonable choices, and you’ll be just fine.
10. Think long term
If you’re looking for the perfect time to travel, you may need to think long term and plan ahead.
I don’t just mean booking your vacations six months in advance. I’m talking about your life.
Think about where you want to be in a year, three years, five years. Do you want to have a ton of bills and responsibilities, or do you want a few bills and the freedom to travel as you please?
You have to figure out who you want to be to build the lifestyle you want.
For me, I chose having the freedom to travel and dogs. I don’t regret it for a second.
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Eden FitePart-time Traveler | Dog Lover | Avoider of Crowds
I help busy people find creative ways to travel more.
Disclosure: Please note that some of the links on this page may be affiliate links, and at no additional cost to you, I earn a commission if you make a purchase. I recommend only products and companies I use and the income goes to supporting this site.