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The Best New Year’s Resolutions for Travelers

Most of us make New Year’s Resolutions, but how many of us keep them?

Let’s be honest, giving up sugar, finally committing to a three-day-a-week indoor cycling schedule, or quitting caffeine is kind of a bummer. Why not make 2023 the year you resolve to do something that’s actually fun! There are many ways to incorporate more travel into your new year goals. Here are a few of my favorites.

Weekend in Colorado Springs

Plan for your whole year of Travel NOW!

You may think this is a huge undertaking but what I’m really asking you to do is to look at your calendar and start planning your vacation days. The number 1 reason? You’ll use all of them.

Americans are the WORST when it comes to taking the vacation time we are owed, and we actually let these days go unused. So pull the calendar out and look at your year ahead, taking note when there’s a holiday weekend or school holiday to plan for. Maybe you have a big project due in May and then in June it would be nice to go somewhere to celebrate. Put a stake in the sand and start blocking off that time, and just think about where you might want to go. If you don’t do this, no doubt the time will go by and you’ll have not gone anywhere.

Travel Alone

I love to travel alone and find it incredibly rewarding.  With no “partner in crime” I open up to people and experiences even more and people find me more approachable as well. Not in a creepy way either. Alone you go where YOU want, see what YOU want to SEE, and wander to your hearts content. It’s a fantastic way of getting to know yourself better and challenging yourself in a variety of ways. There’s something both liberating and empowering when you are 100% in control of your schedule even if it’s just for a day trip or a full vacation.

Get or update your passport.

The world is open so why not enjoy it! If you already have a passport go check in out it right now and see when it expires.  Believe me, time flies! And you also need to be aware of what’s called the 3 months validity rule.  A lot of countries require your passport to be valid for three months starting the day YOU ARRIVE into their county.  So even if you arrive and leave before your passport expires if there isn’t three months you will not be admitted into that country.

Also for those of you frequent travelers, there’s also a 2-page rule where many countries require you to have two blank passport pages!

Get Global Entry.

For someone who travels as much as me, TSA Pre-check is a game changer. You get your own line! You can keep your shoes on! The laptop and liquids can stay in your bag. Light jacket and belt stays on! However, if you plan on ever traveling abroad, I’d skip the TSA-pre-check and go straight to Global Entry. It’s $15 more, you apply, sign up for an interview and now you have both TSA pre-check privileges as well as Global Entry, which allows you to pass by long immigration lines EVERY TIME you come home. It’ fabulous.

bologna samantha brown

Plan that trip you’ve been dreaming of.

Have you been daydreaming of wandering the cobblestone streets of Italy for years and years… and years and years? Well, there’s no time like the present! So plan that trip, and start doing it now! Did you know the psychologists say that just PLANNING a vacation puts you in the same happy zone as going on one? Planning gets you ever closer to your dream (and is free) and then you’ll have planned so much of your trip it will eventually happen. It’s “if you build it, they will come…” turned to “if you plan it, you will go”

If money is an issue, here’s seven tips for saving for your next trip.

Samantha Brown - Packing Tips

Stop over-packing.

Because of all the craziness of luggage lost in Europe this past summer I told my mom that we were only taking carry-ons for our 9-day trip to Germany to see the Christmas markets.  I must admit at the beginning of the trip, I thought I didn’t have enough clothing options, and I would be repeating a lot of looks. But you know what? By mid-trip I was so incredibly happy I did.  We traveled light, and always had our luggage with us.  Even my mom (a chronic over-packer) agreed it was a much better experience than hauling a big bag with a lot of clothes.

Use those miles!

Unless you have a long-term plan, why hoard your miles? Use ‘em! From deals on flights to hotels and rental cars, make your miles work for you instead of collecting proverbial dust.

Travel outside your comfort zone.

Do you visit the same resort every February? Do you only book cruises because they’re easy? Why not change it up? Pick your favorite port town and spend a week there. Rent a house in your usual place to get more of a feel for the local vibe. And if ease is important to you, work with a travel agent. They really make a difference when it comes to simplifying your trip, plus they can help you score great deals.

What’s your best travel-related New Year’s resolution? Share in the comments!

This Post Has 13 Comments

  1. I use travel to motivate my weight loss. Last year I resolved to lose 16 pounds before my summer vacation. This year I’ll go down another 5 which would be my lowest weight in 20 years. That’s my “packing less.”

  2. I use travel to motivate my weight loss. Last year I resolved to lose 16 pounds before my summer vacation. This year I’ll go down another 5 which would be my lowest weight in 20 years. That’s my “packing less.” Hello Scotland.

  3. I always lose weight when I travel because I avoid vehicles and walk most everywhere. I walked well over 600 miles on my three months European trip. 500 of that was in the last month there. It’s when I’m in the states that I gain weight. I’m going back to Europe in February for a few months!

  4. Love this! Resolutions I can keep. I’ve enjoyed watching your travel adventures since you started. Thank you for the all the fun!

  5. If only getting Global Entry were so easy! I have been conditionally approved, but the government shut down meant my planned interview didn’t pan out. Hopefully they’ll be back open when I arrive back from my next international trip so I can do it then.

  6. If I hadn’t traveled alone (when my traveling partner backed out at the last minute) I would never have met my husband, father of my four wonderful children. My Mexican husband and I have been married 50 years…. this year we didn’t get to celebrate yet!

  7. I want you to go to Mexicoo City. The most genuine Christmas city in the word. A little fro Posadas and Piñatas, a lot from Israel, Italy, Virgen de Guadalupe. High celebrations in a 600 year old Cathedral. Feliz Navidad 🎁 Dec 24, Feliz Año Nuevo. Y Dia de los Magos. January 6 when all Mexican children from Magical Towns wait for the Tres Reyes Magos. Hope to see you here! Let me know. I live in Los Angeles, Ca but will go with you to Mexico, City of Palaces!

  8. Longtime fan 🥰 My 2023 resolution is to dive in to blogging about our travels ✈️ and reboot my previous organizing biz into a vacation rental design/efficiency consulting gig 🏠 You are an inspiration!

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