Updated May 29, 2020.
Travelers have it pretty good. They do what they want. They go where they want. They love to tell you all their stories. (Sometimes over and over again!) I’ve long held the opinion that travelers and tourists are one in the same, while others poo-poo “tourists” like they’re the ancient scum on the underbelly of the Lost City of Atlantis, you know what I mean?
While I still believe anyone who goes on a trip is definitely a traveler, there are certain trips I think every traveler should take in their lifetime to really hone and prove their travel skills. Once you get that travel bug, it never really goes away. If you need some travel inspiration to help you plan your next trips, here’s the short list!
1. A Solo Trip
Everyone should travel solo at least once! You’ll learn so much about yourself, your capabilities, and even your life back home. Solo travel changed my life, and I believe it changes the lives of everyone who’s willing to try it. So go out to eat solo. Be the only person on a free walking tour. Remind yourself how fun you are! Solo travel is the travel of travelers.
Get all the best tips and info on my Solo Travel Page!
2. A Long-term Trip
A one- or two-week trip is great, but there’s something incredible about visiting a place long enough to feel like you live there. I lived in Japan for three months in college, and my husband lived in France for work for two years. It’s definitely a different experience than just visiting some place. It’s a huge confidence-builder, especially if you “live” somewhere that they speak a different language than you do. It’s also a ton of fun! At least once in your life, take a trip of four weeks or more and see how you like it!
Do it like a pro! How to Plan Long-term Travel in Europe
3. An Extravagant Hotel Stay
Whether it’s one day or a whole week, you will not regret treating yourself to a top-of-the-line hotel! Just once, stay at that famous hotel in the middle of it all, the original resort with the best location, the place the celebrities stay when they come to town! Get a good night’s sleep, utilize the spa and all the amenities, and live it up for the moment! It’s a fun way to end a trip if you can only afford one night, and if you can swing your trip to go in the off-season, you could score an incredible deal!
The Best of the Best: Legendary Hotels of the World
4. A Long-haul Journey in Economy
At least once in your travels, take a long-haul flight of at least eight hours—in economy class. You gotta have the experience! Take it from someone who cannot sleep sitting up or amid lots of noise and has to get up every hour or so to go to the bathroom: you ca do it! If you can sleep, good for you! If you can’t, it’ll still be worth your while.
Everything You Need to Know: How to Survive a Long-haul Flight
5. A Trip of a Lifetime
Once in your life, so somewhere you’ve always wanted to go, but thought it was too out of reach. Go to the place you’ve always dreamed of visiting. It’s good to have dreams, but what good are they if they don’t inspire you to action? Is your dream a place you want to see? An event you want to attend? A cuisine you want to try? Make it happen!
Read more: 10 Life-changing Trips
6. A Spontaneous Getaway
Want to travel better, more often, and to more places? Be flexible! Be willing to swipe up a deal when you find one. Be willing to leave a day earlier or come home a day later to get a better deal on that flight! Be spontaneous once in a while! Find your opening and be spontaneous at least once in your travels. It’s exciting!
Keep reading: The Beauty of a Weekender
7. A Flight in Business Class
It’s a splurge, but oh, that feeling! Let me tell you, getting off a 15-hour flight from Singapore feels different after sitting in business than it does sitting in economy! Is it a life or death situation? No. Sometimes it’s worth doing, though! On rare occasions, you can actually fly in business cheaper than you can fly in economy, so always keep your eyes peeled!
Read more: Hidden Benefits of Business Class
8. Gift a Trip
Eventually, all travelers want to share the joy of travel with someone. Whether that’s taking your parents on a trip with you, surprising your best friend with the trip they’ve always talked about, or reconnecting with your spouse, gifted travel is fun for everyone!
Get Planning: How to Plan Travel with a Group
9. Points-paid Trip
You work hard so you can travel, but can you make travel work for you? Of course you can! If you’re a traveler but you’re not signed up for any frequent flier programs, do those trips really count? NO! But they should count! Between airline mile accruals, credit card points programs, and hotel rewards systems, you should definitely be taking a free (or almost free) trip every year or so! Get points now, travel more soon.
Brush up on your points game:
Beginner’s Guide to Airline Miles
Beginner’s Guide to Credit Card Points
Beginner’s Guide to Hotel Rewards
I know, I know; lame right? Maybe not! One thing that travel teaches us all is how to appreciate what we have and where we live. A staycation really can be a fun way to explore your own city and see what all the fuss is about for the the tourists who come to visit! Every place has something special about it, and just because you “can do that any time” doesn’t mean the right time is never. Get a hotel room, eat at the tourist traps, and go out and see what’s to do in your city!
Still think it’s lame? Check out all the ways to LOVE your staycation!
Want more? Get travel tips and inspiration on my Travel Tips Page!
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