For me, 2017 was all about figuring out how to travel more. I set out with a goal to take one trip a month, and at the end of the year, I couldn’t believe I actually took 12 trips. 12 Months, 12 Trips. It didn’t have to be a big trip every month – just get out of NJ once a month – and I can’t tell y’all how refreshing it was! Here’s the list, starting in February – Barcelona, Cuba (my birthday trip!), San Francisco, Boston, Tulum, Boston, Pittsburgh, Washington DC, Saratoga Springs NY, Atlanta, Dallas & Chicago! Full disclosure – I didn’t take a trip in January, but I did two trips in December. So, I guess that counts, no? If you follow me on Insta, you might have seen where all I went last year. Not all new places, but like I said – the goal was to get out of NJ once a month! A lot of people have asked me how I managed to pull this off. So, I figured I’ll do a blog post with some tips on how to travel more!
Exploring Havana, Cuba on my birthday
Right off the bat, a couple things that worked in my favor –
- I had an incredibly flexible job and an awesome manager. So, I had the ability to work remotely – used this perk for 3 of 12 trips.
- I was really only working around my own schedule, which made it a lot easier.Mayan Ruins, Yucatán, Mexico
That said, I’m excited to share a few tips with y’all that have helped me travel more in the last few years –
- If you haven’t already done so, check out my blog post 👉 about 6 Tried & Trusted Websites to Find Cheap Flights! That post also includes my methodology for booking flights – what websites/apps to use when I have set dates but not a set location and vice versa + tons of other info like subscriptions for cheap flight alerts, and more!Tulum, Mexico
- I always, always …. ALWAYS book my flights first ✈ (refer to #1 on how to find best flight deals). I generally find that once you take into consideration your dates, origin & destination airports, most feasible flight times, durations, and the million other factors that go into buying a flight, there’s a lot less flexibility with flights. Accommodations are a little easier to book since, generally speaking, there is an abundance of hotels, hostels, airbnbs, etc. So, booking a flight first makes a lot more sense, especially when you are flexible on dates/destination. This tip, of course, doesn’t apply when you HAVE to take a specific trip on specific dates – like a wedding, family reunion, etc.Somewhere along CA-1
- Visit a friend! When you have a friend who lives in a different state/country 👯, and you’ve told them you wanna visit them, mean it! I visited friends in San Francisco, Boston, and Barcelona! Interestingly enough, when I did my solo trip to Colombia in 2016 (travel guides here), I became friends with a wonderful girl who’s from Barcelona, and she’s the one I visited in Barcelona! She was kind and gracious enough to host me, and let’s be real – the best way to experience a place is having a local show you around!El Bunker, Barcelona – best view of the city of Barcelona, and I would’ve never known about it had it not been for my friend!
- Extend work trips 💼. My Pittsburgh trip was actually for work, and then I ended up staying through the weekend to explore the city, since I’d never been! My flight was covered by my job so, all I had to do was cover accommodations and other expenses for the weekend! If you get to travel for work, maximize on those trips!
Andy Warhol Museum, Pittsburgh
- For shorter duration trips, travel East 🌎. This is especially true for people on the East Coast of the US. Got a long weekend? It works a lot better in terms of timings, and you can make the most of a lot weekend! Take a red-eye Friday night & land somewhere in Europe Saturday morning. Take a Monday late afternoon flight back, & still get back to your home base at a decent enough time. This might require a lot of coffee whilst in Europe, but are you actually complaining about that? 😜
Barceloneta, Barcelona || I highly recommend renting a big, and riding around this area and Barrio Gótico if you’re ever in Barcelona!
- Road trips! 🏎 4 of my 12 trips were road trips! It’s a great way to save on flights, plus you get a ton of flexibility on time!
The coolest ever Peet’s Coffee location, in Boston, MA
- Go solo! One of the biggest challenges, when it comes to traveling, is aligning schedules. So, if I ever want to go somewhere and can’t align my schedule with family/friends, I just …. go! If I waited till I had someone who wanted to go where I wanted to go, when I wanted to go, had the means to go, and most importantly …. is someone I’d actually want to travel with, I’d never go anywhere!Havana, Cuba
- Keep an open mind! Personally, I rarely ever stay at big resorts or chain hotels. When I’m traveling solo, I especially love staying in Airbnbs – typically, a private room vs getting the entire place for myself. This is a much cheaper option + a great way to meet people!Mayan Ruins, Yucatán, MexicoAnd there you have it! All my tips on how to travel more. Tell me – do you think this is helpful information? Would you like to see more posts like this on the blog? What else would you like to see on the blog?
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