Location: Alicante, Spain
Nowadays we are overloaded with information. In 2011, Americans took in five times as much information as they did in 1986 – that’s the equivalent of 174 newspapers! Social media just adds to this. Between Instagram, Pinterest, blogs and Facebook, we are constantly being made aware of so much info – and that includes holiday destinations. We are used to seeing pictures of sunsets in exotic locations, jacuzzis in the middle of the jungle and exquisite rooftop bars in the most beautiful destinations – all of which we would not have been exposed to without social media. It’s great that we now have such a better idea of the world thanks to all this travel inspo – but if you are lucky enough to travel, how do you pick where you are off to next??
I got thinking about this last weekend when someone asked me how I chose my holiday destinations (read the blog post here). I generally try my best for it to be spontaneous and not somewhere that is trending. I want to do my best to add value and find locations that people aren’t familiar with, but that doesn’t mean that works for everyone. Here are a few tips that might come in handy when it comes to choosing your next holiday destination.
WHAT IS YOUR REASON FOR TRAVELLING?
I guess this is the most important thing to think about. What is the reason you are travelling? Is it to take a well-needed break from work? Is it to explore a new country, filled with action-packed adventure? Is it simply a weekend away with a loved one? Or do you not have much choice and need to travel for a wedding or event? If you are looking for a relaxed break, then maybe a weekend at a ski resort isn’t going to do it for you, but you might enjoy somewhere in the Caribbean, or somewhere in the Indian Ocean such as the Maldives. If you’re looking for adventure, then perhaps pick somewhere that has a little bit more activity, like Peru or Cambodia.
The pictures here were actually taken when we recently visited Alicante for a wedding, but to make the most of it, we did our best to explore the town, taste the food and sample the local wines. If it’s a destination that you cannot choose, then try to make time to do the things that you would normally do as if it were a normal holiday. We had the best time!
ARE YOU LOOKING FOR SUMMER SUN OR WINTER FUN?
Think about what the weather will be like in your chosen destination. Bear in mind that although it might be summer where you are now, it may also be typhoon season halfway around the world. Whilst you may be thinking Dubai in August for some sea and sand, remember it is scorching hot with average temperatures of over 40 degrees. You won’t be able to lounge seaside in that! Do your research – check the weather. This website breaks down where is best to travel all year round depending on weather, wildlife and sunshine!
HOW FAR ARE YOU WILLING TO TRAVEL?
How long are you willing to sit on a plane? Or in a car? Or on a train? We recently went to Jamaica for five days and people thought we were crazy. We didn’t mind at all as we booked flights that worked for us – taking the red eye flight back to London and sleeping a straight eight hours. Since we travel a fair bit we are used to handling the jet lag, sleeping on planes and knowing what suits us. That being said, I remember a few years ago we had flown to Dubai for my birthday – we did not plan the flight times well, flew economy and visited for three days only. Needless to say, we were exhausted all weekend and whilst we did enjoy it, we could have enjoyed it more. Remember this when deciding to be adventurous – before booking that 12 hour flight to the Maldives, have you looked at other closer island destinations like Cape Verde or the Canary Islands?
WHO ARE YOU TRAVELLING WITH?
Who you are travelling with will play a large factor in where you choose for your holiday destination. Different people have different tastes and it’s important to choose somewhere that will make everyone happy and suit everyone’s budget. This is not so much an issue if you are a couple, but it will have a large impact if you are travelling with a group of friends.
WHAT IS YOUR BUDGET?
Budget is very important to deciding where you want to go. Do you want to travel somewhere a little closer, but spend the entire time in absolute luxury or travel further away and compromise on comfort? Personally, I find it really hard to do long distances in economy – that’s not me wanting to sound like a total snob – but I would much rather visit somewhere a little bit closer and not have to spend the night in an upright seat. If and when I can afford to spend a little bit extra on travel, it’s then that I will consider far away destinations. You can read my article here on how I get to travel more and maximise air miles.
Budget also affects your hotel choices – again I quite like choosing hotels with a gym and a spa, but for others that might not be so important. You can find luxury in most places – I adore the Middle East for this as no one does it quite as well as they do. If it’s all out luxury that I’m looking for, that is the place I would visit. That being said, some places are all about the experiences and the adventure – the trek up to Macchu Picchu in Peru was not done in any luxury at all, but was such an amazing experience that I would recommend it to anyone!
Do whatever is right for you within the budget that you have.
I hope the above points will help you determine where your next holiday destination is going to be. I’d love to know where you are about to head off to next – what made you want to go there? Let me know in the comments below!
Location: Alicante, Spain
Hotel: Hospes Amerigo Hotel