How do you holiday?

Before we went to Vietnam, I shared with you how I usually enjoy my holidays.  The BF and I have recently been thinking about taking the time between Easter and ANZAC day (a public holiday commemorating our war heroes, the acronym stands for Australia and New Zealand Army Corps) for a holiday.

Whilst the holiday time is booked (for him), the plans are no further progressed.  So I’m putting it out my fantastic readers to help us/me!


Here are my questions:

 How do you decide your holiday destinations?

  1. Is there some event or occasion that sparks you booking a trip, or do you ‘always’ take that time off?
  2. Do you get inspired to see a certain destination (bucket list, seen on TV, a friend raved about the place) and look for a time that would suit going there?
  3. Is there a certain hobby (ie golf or hiking) that makes you seek out certain destinations?

My answer is that I have a bucket list of destinations I’ve not seen, combined with some much loved locales that I’ll continually revisit (ie NYC, Paris, Melbourne, Brisbane) and some I’d like to see again, some day (Greece & Poland)

How do you eliminate destinations, other than on cost, of course?

  1. Are places ruled out as they might not have enough activities to keep you entertained?

For me, weather is a HUGE consideration.  If I need to buy Artic snow gear (ie this polar vortex, but anything in Scandinavia over winter) it’s off the list to visit, at least at that time of year.  I must find a work around, as I do want to see the northern lights!

How do you set a budget for your holiday?

  1. Do you set the budget, then find a destination that fits?
  2. Do you set the destination and then save to able to visit it?
  3. How much is too much on travel costs, accommodation or the cost of living? (ie holidays in Australia may be cheaper to travel to, but cost more in accommodation and day to day than Asia)

My answer? I have cashola saved up, doing nothing, so I really will spend ‘anything’ on a flight to a cool destination, but I tend to scrimp of accommodation costs (The Sheraton in Vietnam aside!)  With that in mind, I feel like I could realistically go anywhere as I have the leave available, and the finances.  However, the BF has limited leave (when the rest of the country does!), and I’m not sure his budget.

Malaysia source:

As to our thoughts so far, on destinations:

  • North QLD: I could do my ‘learn to surf course’
    • pros: nearby so a ‘quick flight’, warmer weather as we approach Easter, same language, currency etc etc, some cities (Cairns, Port Douglas, Noosa, Gold Coast) are well equipped for tourists
    • cons: the ‘surf’ stops at the reef, so it’s either Yeppoon (a tiny town as far north as a surf school is), or the Sunshine or Gold Coast which both seem a little dull and pedestrian, Yeppoon might lack much to do outside surf school
  • Malaysia
    • pros: a cheap airlines services it (Air Asia), somewhere ‘new’ to me, could get to a beach with limited effort (shortish drive), cheap day-to-day costs
    • cons: the cheap tickets are GONE for the time we have planned,
  • Singapore
    • pros: a cheap airline services it (Scoot), different culturally and architecturally, warm weather, English language incredibly common, first world
    • cons: no cheap fares left, relatively pricey day to day costs
Singapore source:

To be honest, I would also happily spend the time in Melbourne, or another capital of Australia.

What are your answers to all my questions?  Where would  you suggest we go?

11 Replies to “How do you holiday?”

  1. I think you have a pretty good base plan! I like the sound of learning how to surf, and warm weather. Sadly, I only got to take my first vacation last year, and as my parents had just moved, I took the opportunity to visit them. I do have somewhat of a vague bucket list in my head, but honestly, as I can't afford it right now, I haven't done much research.

    I have vacation penned in for September again as the weather wasn't too bad last time I visited my parents. Free lodging is our best bet right now, as much as I would actually like to go overseas. Plans may change if we move closer to them and I'm able to visit, but it will still be local.

    1. I feel so sad for American's and their relatively short holiday allowances! It's just so soul destroying. I also know what you mean about finances – though I almost have the opposite problem, I'm not sure what's a reasonable amount to spend, given I'm not in debt, and I have a large savings account. That being said, I'll never splurge with it all (all the savings). But feel free to dream with the bucket list.

  2. We definitely pick holidays based around hobbies (bush walking for me and beach/sports for my husband…+ child activities as well.) I'm looking at your lists and thinking Port Douglas + Daintree would be absolutely on my list for April. Noosa is a default "always" on the list. I'm not sure about Singapore…it just doesn't grab me unless I was thinking of a luxury hotel type holiday?

    1. Oh I like the idea of the Daintree! I hear you on Singapore – it doesn't immediately grab me, I spent one night there once, and the small snippet didn't really appeal.

      I think the BF and I need stronger 'hobbies' other than 'nerding' :p I'm thinking this running will mean I'm more interested in varied locales where I can run and check out houses… I like a bit of house window shopping.

  3. I'd go to the Whitsundays. Generally expensive, but so beautiful. If I had money I'd go there ever couple of years for a short break.

    Mr Sans wants to go skiing every year, so we do. When we were whippersnappers we would go camping in summer. Mr Sans surfed and I read books. We usually have a summer holiday travelling north and a ski holiday south every year. With some short adventures around and about in between our two big breaks. Canberra, Hill End, Orange etc Now are kids are all grown up we have spread our adventures farther afield – Alice, Uluru, Hayman Is.

    Mr Sans hates being stuck in a plane and hates all the waiting around that airlines demand, so that sets some limits on travelling o/s.

    I'd love a holiday now! Can't wait to see your destination.

    1. Beautiful does sound delightful – I'm thinking we might take a few days to surf/sky dive (BF has a gift voucher) locally, and then fly north for the rest of the time.

      I like the routine you've set – you know there'll be skiing/copious book reading and hot chocolates for you, and another summery one.

      I can understand Mr Sans disdain for travelling on planes, it can be a real bother, but it's so nice when I start to imagine my grandmother on SHIPS! WOW! Thankfully the BF will fly 😀

  4. We usually plan our one "long" (5-6 days) vacation around our anniversary in June. Celebrating is the perfect excuse for a vacation (and then we don't have to worry about buying each other gifts) and it's a great time of year weather-wise. Then we think about finances. Last year we visited Florida and this year we're going to California, which means next year we'll have to do a smaller scale trip to compensate. And we always have plenty of places we'd love to visit, so we'll go down the list to try to find one that fits in with what we're looking to spend and go from there.

    If I was choosing from your list, I'd pick the warmest place and hit the beach! We're still dipping back below freezing every night, so just going without a coat sounds amazing right now. 🙂

    1. You've made me think about planning a wedding (for anniversaries) to make sure it is suitably spaced around birthdays/Christmas/Easter etc, so there's another excuse to enjoy life – with a dinner or a trip or whatever!!

      The beach seems popular on the voting front, and it is the BF's general inclination!

  5. I can't advise anyone on choosing holiday destinations! For my whole life I have used my vacation time to visit far-away relatives and still do. One annual trip to see Link and another to see Rom's parents. He has much less vacation time than I do, and so far I have not wanted to travel alone for the rest of my time off. So I use it for relaxing and projects around the house. As you know, I have saved up for a trip to NYC but still haven't scheduled it. In the future, Rom and I plan to add "side trips" to Paris and Reykjavik to our UK trips. As you might guess, we try to plan our trips to London and Toronto when there are bands on tour that we want to see! Other than all that, the only exceptions I've made are for weddings, family reunions, etc when we've had plenty of notice to schedule our time off work.

    1. I love all the different 'motivations' to travel of my readers – where you are family and event orientated, others are have hobby based holidays, whilst my family is more a 'where do we want to see' style!

      I do like the 'tack on' ideas, and it's sort of how I loosely based my holidays when I was single – NYC one year, France the other, both with side trips to other countries and cities that I've not seen before. I am suddenly being drawn to Reykjavik like never before. I had no interest, and now it keeps popping up 🙂 Just got to sign up the BF on my newest hair-brain idea!

  6. I love to go South East Asian countries for holidays. I have only been to Hong Kong, Philippines and Kuala Lumpur, and I plan to go to more countries. There's just too many sights to see in those countries and I like that I get to see a different side of the world.

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