Part 1: Make The Most Of Your Time Abroad
You’ve done it, you put in the time, worked those long hard hours and earned yourself that coveted time off. Now you and the family are off to have a wonderful experience abroad.
But what do you do once you get there? Some say you should take it easy and enjoy being out of the rat race for a few days while others are saying you should see as much as possible with the time you’ve earned.
In this two part series we’ll explore the reasons why you should either make the most of your trip or enjoy the down time and let you make your own decision about what to do with your vacation. This first part is why you should make the most of your time abroad.
There Are A Lot of Things to Do and See
When you travel abroad you’re thrown into an area rich in a culture foreign to yours from home. There’s an entire country of places to go, things to do, people to meet, and foods to try. Choosing not to go out and take advantage of this plethora of opportunities is like walking out of a buffet hungry because you only got one plate of food.
Plan out your days to maximize the most of your time. Each meal should be an opportunity to try new and interesting cuisine, have fun and adventurous activities, do as much as possible because there’s plenty to do in a country you’re visiting for the first time.
It’s Easy To Procrastinate And Get Into A Slump
We’ve all been there, you come home at the end of your shift or you have the weekend off and you plant yourself on the couch and veg until it’s time to go to bed. Honestly nothing wrong with that, but it’s so easy to fall into that trap while on vacation.
There’s nothing worse then looking back on your time abroad and realizing you spent the first two days napping in the hotel room. You don’t want to kick yourself for missing out on an awesome hike, museum tour, or other experience because you couldn’t motivate yourself to wake up early enough.
Having a plan and a schedule to follow can help mitigate this problem. Sure you might be exhausted at the end of each day, but at least your exhausted because you had a blast and did amazing things.
Which leads into the point.
You Don’t Want To Regret Not Doing Anything
It pains me to hear a friend talk about their trip to somewhere amazing and then hear the regret in their voice when they lament about not doing something because they didn’t have the time or plans fell through. They could have had an amazing experience doing a dozen other things, but that one missed opportunity seems to overshadow everything else.
While things happen and its impossible to control everything, don’t be the reason you were unable to experience something incredible. If you’re looking forward to climbing the Eiffel Tower during your trip to Paris, make it happen. Don’t let the opportunity slip by without having done everything you could to make it happen. If you did everything possible to make the opportunity happen and couldn’t because of circumstances out of your control you won’t regret it nearly as much as you would if it was because you didn’t want to set an alarm and go.
Don’t live with regrets because as you’ll realize in the next section.
It Might Be A While Before You Come Back, If Ever
The unfortunate reality for some is that this might be your one chance to experience the country you’re visiting. Travel can be expensive depending on where you go, you only have so much time off, and if you want to experience everything the world has to offer then visiting the same place twice makes little sense.
Treating your trip as if it’s the only time you’ll experience the place you’re at helps you prioritize the things you absolutely want to do and motivates you to do more. Believing you only have one week to experience the country you’re in helps push you to make the most of your trip and savor each precious moment you’re there.
Recognize that it’s not possible to do everything, but don’t look back years from now wishing you had been just a little more prepared, motivated, or ambitious enough to do the things you wanted. You only have one life and you want to enjoy as much as you can.
So, on your next vacation draw up the itinerary, map out your route, get in better shape, buy the tour tickets in advance, and do everything you can to experience as much as possible while abroad.
Author: Benjamin Baker
After serving abroad in a religious capacity for two years Ben has felt the pull to travel and explore ever since. This desire was further fueled by his wife Maddie and the two have traveled to many places over the last few years. Ben’s hope is that by sharing his knowledge and experiences obtained while traveling that others can improve their lives and the lives of others through travel. Check out additional articles written by Benjamin.