Saturday, April 30, 2011

Avoid staycation temptations that ruin your vacation

It won't be long before school days are replaced hot summer days. Many of us will pack the kids in the car and head out for a summer vacation. What better time for family bonding than to spend quality time together?

Staycations are popular again this year. For those who are unfamiliar with the term don't worry. It just means that you are staying home for your vacation.

My family took a staycation a few years ago. We had planned to spend a week out of town that never happened. One thing went wrong after another. The last straw was when the air conditioner went
out right before we left town. (Whether you live in Chattanooga or Sacramento heating and air is a necessity!)

We felt that we needed to be home when the landlord came to fix the unit. It took a couple of days for our landlord to get around to it. By that time, Hubby's vacation was almost over. Instead of tossing in the towel, we decided to find fun things to do in our town.

At the time, we lived in Chattanooga. It is always popular with tourists so we had no problems with finding fun things to do. I'm putting some of our tips here that helped us have a great staycation. We've put them to use in the different places that we've lived. They've always help us find fun things to do. Hopefully this list will help you too.

Nearby tourist attractions
Every community offers something interesting. What makes your town special? We take ideas from commercials, the newspapers and friends. Most of the places that we've lived have had more things to offer that we noticed at first glance.

Visit a local travel display
You don't have to be a guest to avail yourself of the travel brochures by the door. I've stopped in several hotels to pick up area information through the years. Sometimes there are even racks of coupons for attractions and restaurants.

Make a list
When deciding what to visit, it helps to make a list of the attractions that interest your family. Out from each you can list the pros and cons. This process can help you whittle your list down to a workable level.

Don't work
No matter how much planning you do there is one staycation temptation to be avoided. If you get the urge to stay home and mow the lawn, clean house or clean out a closet; don't. A vacation is still a time to relax.

If you are tempted to get some work done ask yourself this one question. If you weren't home, would you still worry about the yard or closet? If the answer is no then go. Head out the door and have yourself some staycation fun with your family. After all, isn't that what a summer vacation is all about?