Making a New Year’s Travel Resolution is easy – achieving it is much more difficult. The good news is, it doesn’t have to be!
Most often, New Year’s Resolutions fail because people don’t believe they can actually achieve their goal – to many, it is just a dream.
The key to accomplishing your New Year’s Resolution is by planning how you can unlock those travel dreams and make them a reality.
Goal Setting, Budgets, External Help and Support and finally, your own personal commitment are going to determine how you can achieve your New Year’s Travel Resolution for 2014.
1. SET YOUR GOALS
We all need meaning, purpose and challenges in our lives.
I need to have a travel destination to look forward to, and I love planning my journeys.
I want to see interesting places, connect with different cultures and take great photographs but most importantly, I want to understand myself a little more.
All too often, I hear of friends who have put travel on the back burner, as something they will do in their retirement. They talk of taking a cruise, buying a Winnebago and “doing” Australia and following the Grey Nomad trail when they are 70 years old!
Unfortunately, when retirement finally arrives it is often followed by an ambulance and a funeral cortege.
So, start planning your travel now and don’t put it off for something, which many people see only happening in the long term future.
The List -This is the easy part, just don’t self sabotage and be realistic about what you can achieve.
Break your goals into sub goals.
- Travel Location: Where do you want to travel to?
- Time: How long do I want to be there?
- How much leave from work do I have owing?
Don’t be afraid to fine tune – of course, I would love to spend 10 days on Bora Bora Island in a luxurious chalet, but in reality, Fiji is less expensive but still a Pacific Island!
If finance is the biggest issue for not being able to travel then you will have to start by making some serious adjustments to your expenditure. There is a big difference between a “need” and a “want”
I am like any other traveller who has to work hard to budget for an important vacation destination.
There is no use dreaming about a very expensive Photographic/Writing trip to Myanmar unless I put some money aside each week to pay for flights, the tour, travel insurance and other incidentals, like eating!
I am usually working on my travel plans 6 to 12 months in advance and I love the sense of achievement I get when I see my bank balance growing.
- Research and calculate how much the trip will cost.
- Determine how much you will put away each pay and add a little extra when you decide not to go away for that expensive weekend with your friends.
Most trips end up costing much more than you budget for. Always remember to take advantage of some of the recommended “extra” activities while you are in the country. Unlike many other Asian countries, Myanmar is an expensive country to travel in and it makes good economic sense to take advantage of the hot air balloon ride (at dawn) over the ancient city of Bagon, as I am unlikely to return in the near future.
There are so many areas where you can save money and it will be up to you to decide whether you can do without racing out to catch the sales for a “bargain” or just packing your lunch and not buying a coffee every day. Don’t forget about “eBay” and get rid of some of your junk!
2. SET MILESTONES
- Dates and timeframes. Lock in your holidays with your work. By making regular contributions to your travel saving bank account it will not be long before you can book and pay for your flights. Have a visual image and a calendar to remind you that everyday, is one day closer to realising your dream.
- Do some research to start to make your “dream” vacation seem more “real”.
Tell your friends and family about your goals and you will be amazed how supportive they will be which will give you more incentive to continue.
Seek the advice of a travel agent who will be able to answer any questions you might have about your trip. If you feel confident in what you are planning, you are more likely to believe you are going to achieve your travel dream. If you want to post a sticker on your forehead or on your fridge about your travel goals for 2014, then do whatever you think will keep you focused on achieving them.
Personally, I want to tell the world!
4. THERE IS NO TIME LIKE THE PRESENT
If you are serious about traveling this year then make a start today – do some research about your destination, pack your lunch for work tomorrow, use public transport or take a bottle of water to work instead of buying that Starbuck’s coffee. Get your mind into believing you are going to travel, not just wishing you could travel.
BE RESILENT and PEREVERE
You might get a few glitches in your travel plans but the most important thing is to keep aiming for that goal.
For me, I have been planning my trip to Myanmar for almost 2 years and someone always keeps changing the goal posts. So don’t give up, I haven’t!