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How to plan the perfect vacation

The idea of a perfect vacation or perfect anything is usually considered the unattainable.  The expression, nothing is perfect, sets us up to lower our expectations or as some would say, have realistic expectations.

Instead of lowering your expectations, rethink your idea of perfect. Be open to the unexpected and flexible with your schedule.  Sometimes the “hiccups” turn out to be the highlights if we are able to go with the flow.

There are three parts to the vacation, before, during and after, all are part of the whole experience.


The first part, before your vacation is the foundation of everything and can also be broken down into three parts, which are summarized below, with more detail on our planning guide.

The perfect vacation, deconstructed.


1.     What, Where, Why and When.
When you plan a vacation around something specific you want to do or see, this step is already done.  This step is referring to the times aren’t sure where to go or what you want to do.  You may have a vague idea of what you want but that’s about it.

1.     The purchase.
Where are you going to book your vacation, how will you book it and who will you book/pay with

2.    Preparation
Making sure everything needed to complete your vacation is arranged.  Reconfirming everything and completing forms/check-in process, knowing what documents are needed and making arrangements if they need to be ordered. 
Preparing home and work in advance so you aren’t stressed out rushing around before you go and of course so you don’t forget anything


During your vacation:

1.    Have confirmation numbers, details and notes of what you booked with you.
If you are missing something, let someone know as soon as possible so it can be fixed.  Sometimes there is a mistake you are missing something or you are charged for something you paid for in advance.  Making sure you understand the details and exactly what you paid for in the pre-vacation stage will avoid misunderstandings or finding out you didn’t book and pay for something you thought you did.

2.    Expect the unexpected.
Regardless of where you book and who you book with, sometimes things happened beyond anyone’s control.   The weather may not be ideal or you may have delays in transportation are two that you can’t do anything about.  Be flexible and open to adjustments or changes in your plans to accommodate any “hiccups”


After your vacation.

1.    Set the stage for your return.

This is part of preparing or should be.  Think about what you can do in advance or make arrangements to have done in advance so you can return home and linger in your vacation mode, easing into life.

2.    Bring your vacation home.
Is there something you did or saw that you can incorporate into your life at home?  Did you try a new cuisine or learn to cook something new?  Did you hear a new genre of music you enjoyed or pick up a few words in another language?  Adding something new to your life from your vacation enhances your life but it also brings back the memories and over time they improve with age.


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