What's A Nearcation & The Best Ways To Have One

After years of living beyond our means, Western society is suffering the equivalent of a nervous breakdown. As travel is considered discretionary spending, one can be forgiven for thinking we need to ‘spend less, travel less’.

A tight budget does not mean the end of travel, however. Enter the “Nearcation”, it’s the concept of taking a vacation to a location relatively close to home, but just far enough away so that you feel you can relax and decompress. The key of a Nearcation is to cut cost without cutting out on the experience.

Here are the best ways to have an inexpensive Nearcation:

1) Check Out Bargains via On-line Booking Sites: The cost savings in flights, accommodation, and tour packages have never looked so good as they have since the recession. Revolutionized by on-line travel booking systems, it makes all the sense in the world to look at your flights and accommodations for that special weekend far in advance so that you can compare prices and take advantage of good rates and packages. Be flexible with dates and choices of accommodation and carriers.

2) Consider A Driving Holiday In Your Own Backyard: Why not check out what your own country, or own state, has to offer? There must be plenty of places you haven’t explored yet. While there’s more ‘brag’ value in exploring Morocco on the back of a camel, your own backyard isn’t too shabby either. If your budget doesn’t allow for transport expenses plus accommodation, then try renting a powered caravan and find a spot in the soft curve of a tranquil lagoon, where you can enjoy the fresh air and sunshine during the day and savor a delicious dinner by candlelight under the stars at night.

3) Look At Low Cost Carriers (LCC): Whilst stranded at an airport 30 years ago, Richard Branson chartered a plane, sold seats to other stranded passengers, and in effect started Virgin Atlantic Airways. Today, the low cost carrier segment (LCC) continues to challenge established practices in flight operations, and now own one-third of the travel market. By making meal services optional, the ground time of the aircraft in loading and unloading meal trays has been reduced. By using the lesser used airports, these carriers pass on further savings by reducing the cost of parking charges, lessening traffic congestion problems, and making the trip to the airport shorter for many passengers.

4) Rethink Your Accommodation: Once upon a time, travel was an exclusive activity for the wealthy, with hotels the only option in accommodation. Today, the choices are endless: From pensiones and hostales to Bed and Breakfasts, serviced apartments and vacation rental by owners, where the traveler can make their accommodation booking directly with the property owner. The advantages of smaller properties are twofold: a substantial saving on accommodation coupled and a more authentic travel experience.

Not wanting to be outdone, it is now becoming commonplace for 5-star hotels to offer 3-star prices, or to promote very attractive package deals. Hotels are also beginning to take a very personal approach to their customer service, slowly burying the myth that all hotels are large and impersonal. Take the time to search the net for the various hotel deals, as they definitely are out there. 

5) Take Shorter Breaks More Frequently: Every couple of months, pack a small bag, jump in the car, and drive for up to a couple of hours from your home to the countryside. Stay at a cute and inexpensive B&B, enjoy the local restaurants, take naps after lunch, read a book in the afternoons, and bask in the beauty of the tranquil rural landscape. It’s amazing how a couple of nights away, every so often, will recharge your batteries and give you a fresh perspective on life.

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Victoria Ugarte, Author, Corporate Culture and Travel Specialist , is becoming known around the world as one of the most recognized faces of travel and culturally correct behavior. She spends 3 months out of every year traveling the world, keeping her readers posted on exciting destinations, latest travel tips, and inspiring them to “Explore. Discover. Live”. Based in Sydney, Australia, Victoria has authored several books with Amazon, including “Culture Savvy for Women.” 
You can find Victoria, wherever she is in the world, by going to www.ExploreMyWorldTravel.com