One thing you likely agree about is that vacation time is precious. Every moment you spend is important and shouldn’t be wasted.
For something that you’re going to spend hundreds, if not thousands, on, you want to make the most of your experience. This means maximizing your time in the city that you’re visiting and seeing as much as possible.
To do this, you’ll need to be conscious about saving time on your trip. You can do this in several ways and it will lead to you spending more time doing things that you enjoy.
Because of this, practicing time-saving tips for a vacation is a must and will work toward improving your trip. We’ll give you five excellent tips below to help you do this for your next vacation!
Write Out Your Itinerary
Saving time on vacation starts before you ever get on the plane. Before you leave, you should write out an itinerary for what you plan to do during your stay.
Drafting a physical plan has multiple parts to it that saves you time later on.
To start with, you’ll need to research the city that you’re going to and see what there is to do. If you didn’t do this before leaving, then you might waste time once you’re in the city figuring out what you want to do.
Additionally, writing down your plans means that you have something to reference during your trip. There is a lot to take in during your vacation and this can easily become overwhelming.
If you’re overwhelmed, then you might forget something like what you wanted to do or the name of a good restaurant.
With a written itinerary, it’s simple to jump into an activity that you thought of beforehand without having to figure out what it is.
While a written plan may seem restricting, you don’t have to use it precisely. Instead, draft an itinerary with activities that you’d like to complete and reference it as a guideline.
This will save you hours during your vacation that would be spent Googling or asking the locals about what is good in the city.
Make Plans for Transportation
You should also make plans for transportation around your travel destination.
This certainly includes the task of booking your flight, but it focuses more on how you plan to get around in the city that you’re visiting. You likely already book your ticket well in advance, so that’s a good start for saving you time and money at the airport.
Once you’ve landed in a new city, you need a way to get around. How are you going to get to your hotel or Airbnb? How are you going to get around the city and visit the activities and restaurants that you want to?
Your options generally include renting a car, public transportation, shuttle services, and ridesharing. Each comes with its own set of advantages and drawbacks, most importantly how much each one costs.
Considering your budget limitations, look for transportation that will suit your needs. Renting a car is a fairly convenient solution, but is likely the most expensive mode of getting around.
On the other hand, public transportation is the least expensive, but also the least convenient. Ridesharing strikes a good medium between the two.
It doesn’t necessarily matter which you choose, but just that you have an idea of what you’re going to do before you’re left stranded at the airport.
Consider Back-Up Ideas
While creating an itinerary is an excellent plan, sometimes circumstances don’t work in your favor and your plans fall through. On a vacation, this can be quite challenging. To overcome this, you should spend time looking for back-up ideas.
For example, you might want to visit a specific high-rated restaurant. When you get to the establishment, you may find that it’s booked to capacity and there’s no chance of getting a table.
If you came unprepared, then you likely won’t know what to do next. You might settle for another restaurant nearby or just head back to your hotel.
Alternatively, thinking of a back-up restaurant will ensure that you still have a good eating experience. If your main plan falls through, then you have another great choice to use.
This applies to more than just the restaurants that you visit. You never know what to expect in a new city, but don’t rely on your plans to perfectly come to fruition.
Pre-Program GPS Addresses
Another useful tip is to pre-program the addresses of activities, locations, and restaurants that you want to visit into your GPS. More likely, this means setting them as favorites on your phone GPS app.
Doing this is a fantastic way of easily pulling up the address you want to head to. If you’re using a ridesharing service, then you’ll have the destination address on hand to plug into the app.
Not only that, but doing this serves as a good alternative to drafting a physical itinerary. Having everything that you want physically saved in some form will help jog your memory.
Regardless of what type of transportation you use, you’re going to need the addresses of the places you want to see. Instead of relying on Google when you’re already on vacation, do this prep work beforehand so that you can spend more time enjoying your trip.
Travel During Shoulder Season
As a final consideration, you should try to travel during the shoulder season.
If you’ve never heard of the shoulder season, it’s the time between the peak season and off-season. The exact dates vary depending on the city that you’re visiting, but the shoulder season is typically during the late months of spring and the early months of fall.
Traveling during the shoulder season is great at saving time because there are usually fewer people traveling. This means less waiting time at the airport and greater access to the activities you want to participate in during your trip.
With fewer people around, there will inevitably be shorter lines and less of a wait for anything that you want to do. Better yet, plane tickets and hotel rates will also be less expensive.
Why you should pick the shoulder season over the off-season is because the weather will still be fairly nice. It won’t be as warm and pleasant as the peak season, but it also won’t be as frigid as the off-season. It strikes a nice balance between both seasons with fewer people around.
Your vacation will end before you know it and you’ll be back to the daily grind of life. To maximize the time you spend in a new city, you should try to save as much time as you can.
This means that you’ll need to carefully prepare for your trip before getting on your flight.
You can accomplish this by writing out an itinerary, making plans for transportation, thinking of back-up ideas, pre-programming addresses into your GPS or phone, and traveling during the shoulder season.
Combining all of these tips will allow you to knock a bunch of tasks out of the way before you reach your destination. This will save you precious hours that are better spent enjoying your trip.