I recently read an article called 8 Travel Resolutions for 2013 by Maureen Jenkins, a foodie and travel writer I enjoy. This article spoke to me as it highlighted some of the very things that inspired me to start Utrip. After reading the article I had to reply and update this list in order to take it one step further. I now present the Modern Travelers 2013 Year of Adventures Resolution Guide!
Let’s begin with some of the important basics laid out by Jenkins. I have often heard people say that they wish they could go somewhere but they don’t speak the language or that they want to visit a far off land but the plane ride is too long. So our first 2013 resolution must be No Excuses.
I loved Jenkins third resolution telling people to give guided tours and cruises a chance, and I take that one step further, Try a New Style of Travel. I recently returned from an amazing trip to Italy and as you can imagine, being a veteran traveler, I rarely hire others to plan my trips or lead them but I decided to give two tours a try. To my surprise, the four-hour food tour I joined changed my point of view completely. I urge each of you to try something new or unusual, take a tour if you normally don’t or skip one if you’re a tour junkie. Try a new type of cruise, try a different style of lodging accommodation, maybe rent a condo for the week, or live on a farm.
Our third resolution is a combination of two: first, don’t be afraid of the familiar and second throw away the Top 10 guides. I often hear people say “I really want to go back to ______ but I have seen all the important things.” My reply is always the same, “Perfect! Go back and really see that city.” As a first timer to Rome I spent my days seeing the Colosseum, Vatican, and Pantheon (all three were breathtaking) and now I can’t wait to go back. On your first or second visit to a destination you can’t avoid seeing the big things and checking out the major tourist traps it’s only on your third or fourth visit to a destination that you can truly begin to immerse yourself in the culture and people. So in 2013 I challenge you to return to a beloved destination and see it from a different perspective. Aim to see nothing that is on a Top Ten list!
Plan a major trip for the spring! Spring in an amazing time to travel for many reasons: great weather, smaller crowds, lower prices, easier availability of vacation time. As everyone else tries to save their vacation days and money for the summer and winter seasons, use the spring to actually enjoy your vacation days and benefit from the low prices available in most northern hemisphere destinations. One piece of advice I have given to all of my friends, which Jenkins also encourages you to resolve to follow, is to create a savings account for travel. Do it! Just like saving for car trouble and medical needs (insurance), saving for your education, and other important life expenses, seeing the world and expanding your horizons is a priority. If you wait, travel will never find you. In 2013 make it a priority.
Our sixth travel resolution is Be Afraid. There is a big difference between being afraid and being in serious danger, a little fear should be the goal in 2013. Whether it’s traveling alone (like I just did for the first time on my trip to Italy), jumping off a cliff, dancing with strangers, or eating rotting shark (my business partner Edan enjoyed some recently in Iceland) do something new that pushes you. One of the most gratifying and addictive things about travel is that it expands one’s horizons and being uncomfortable when doing it is a necessity.
Our last resolution for the 2013 modern traveler is to travel like a Utripper, meaning, build a highly personalized and unique travel experience to your dream destination. I have no greater wish for each of us in the New Year than for us all to take a highly personalized trip. Who says “I want to go on a prepackaged, one size fits all, canned experience”? No one I know. Instead craft an experience (or have Utrip help you) that is uniquely yours and that no one else has ever experienced. Create the perfect blend of spice, rugged, ancient, and crazy to fit your 2013 mood. Travel often!
If followed correctly this recipe will lead to a year filled with adventure and fun!