Do you want to plan your first trip out of the country? How about hit a new continent? Whatever your vision for wanderlust in 2016, you have to be more specific than just “travel more.” These travel resolutions should help.
I’m a big believer that you have to name the things you want. New Year’s resolutions are a lot like well-timed goal setting – if you do it right. While I know the statistics about resolutions, I have also picked up a thing or two about goal setting. If you really want more travel in your life, setting goals in the form of travel resolutions is a must!
Check out my favorite travel resolutions and let me know yours!
Travel to Practice A Language
Being able to speak multiple languages is an admirable (and useful) skill. According to some research, it might even keep your brain sharp and prevent memory loss! Every seasoned traveler knows that communicating with locals can be an important and enjoyable part of your trip. If your last time studying a language was college, dust off your skills or pick a new language to learn. The best way to hold yourself accountable? Book your trip to a destination where people speak your new language of choice.
Travel for the Company
It can be tempting to get caught up in bucket list-style travel and the excitement of new places. Some of my favorite trips are deemed favorites because of the company. Instead of obsessing over your to-see checklist, make one destination selection just for the company. Visit your friend in her new city, or grab a backpacking buddy who really wants to see a country you’ve already explored. Even if it’s a repeat visit, experiencing a place with another person adds an entirely different perspective.
Explore Closer to Home
Your own country has amazing things to offer. I promise. As a resident of the United States, my conversations about “travel” are often defined by distance. Domestic travel is still travel, friends! Exploring your own country – and even your own city – can give you a new appreciation for how much there is to see. Spend a weekend seeing your own country through the eyes of a visitor – you might be surprised how much it has to offer.
Go For the Experience
Your most amazing trips likely have little to do with the actual destination and more with the experiences you enjoyed there. This year, find an event or experience that speaks to you and go. Huge music festival? Olympic Games? This could be once-in-a-lifetime stuff.
Do Your Research
True story: On my first day in Vienna, I went for a run around the city. I kept passing beautiful buildings and thinking “Oh, I think that’s important.” but I had no idea about the history or significance of each place. Not my finest moment. I have been to so many places where my experience would have been enhanced if I had a better understanding of the history and culture. Don’t rely on guided tours or a guidebook to tell you everything you need to know once you arrive. Dig deep before you get there so you can appreciate every moment.
Face a Fear
Leaving your comfort zone is the best catalyst for personal growth I have ever found. You don’t necessarily have to search for the highest bungee jump to do this. Maybe for you facing a fear means visiting a country where you can’t speak a word of the language. Maybe it is traveling solo, staying in a hostel, stepping off dry land, or visiting a developing region. For me, it’s living without electricity. I’m selecting dates for my turtle conservation volunteer trip with La Tortuga Feliz right now, and I’ll certainly be without a lot of the travel comforts I’m accustomed to enjoying!
Those are my suggestions for 2016 travel resolutions – but what are yours? I want to hear them!