You probably take the occasional weekend getaway or summer day trip, but when was the last time you took off for a few weeks? Have you ever done it?
Traveling for the summer – or any lengthy period of time, for that matter – requires you to put certain parts of your life on hold, but it isn’t as unrealistic as you think. The key is to plan ahead so that your life doesn’t fall apart in your absence.
5 Tips for Long-Term Travel
Whether you’re going to the coast for a few weeks or hopping on a plane and flying across the globe for a couple of months, there are some actions you can take before and during your trip to ensure your home life stays in order.
- Figure Out Your Job Details
Your career is the most obvious obstacle you have to work around. Thus, it makes sense to start with your job before considering anything else. Options may include:
- In the best case scenario, you’ve accumulated a lot of vacation time and personal leave days and your employer is fine with you taking consecutive weeks off from your job.
- Most people don’t have weeks or months of vacation time saved up. In this case, you may come to your boss and ask for a sabbatical. Though it will likely be unpaid, your employer may be willing to grant you the time off in order to avoid losing you.
- Tired of your job? Ready to transition into a new industry or career field? Perhaps you could quit your job and use the vacation as a buffer between your past career and your new one.
- Ideally, you wouldn’t have to do any work on your trip. However, this isn’t always realistic. In most cases, you’ll have to bring your computer with you and do some remote work to appease your employer.
Whatever you do, it’s important to be strategic about your job. You don’t want your month-long vacation to come at the expense of your decades-long career. Plan ahead.
- Come Up With a Specific Plan
Once you have some clarity on the work front, you can then develop some specific travel plans. The key here is to strike a balance between being too lax and being too structured. It’s good to come up with some rough dates and a loose itinerary, but don’t overschedule every minute of every day. If you do the latter, you’ll find it difficult to relax.
- Prep Your House
From a practical point of view, you have to think about what you’re leaving behind in your absence. If you’re a homeowner, you can’t just let your home sit for a couple of months and expect everything to work out. There needs to be a plan.
For extended absences like yours, it’s best to hire a vacant home property management service. For a set fee, these services will do things like check and scan your mail, pay monthly bills, schedule landscaping and house cleaning, coordinate repairs and services, and keep an eye on the property to ensure it’s safe and secure. If these people are going to be working on cleaning the inside of your house, then make sure that everything they will need is easily available. Store up on cleaning solutions, mops and cleaning cloths, a vacuum cleaner (that can be bought here), and other cleaning material/equipment that they may need. This avoids any hassle for you as well as the cleaners.
- Develop a Budget
Travel can be expensive. All of the little things that you take for granted at home become expenses when you’re on the road. Develop a budget to avoid blowing through your savings and accruing large amounts of debt. Here’s a helpful guide to streamline your budgeting efforts.
- Use the Right Apps
When traveling, your phone is a lifeline that will make your trip smooth and rewarding, while simultaneously allowing you to monitor your life back home. There are a number of powerful travel apps available for download. Some top ones include LoungeBuddy, Hostelworld, Skyscanner, Tripit, and Trail Wallet. Play around with a few of these before leaving and you’ll be ready to use them once you lift off.
The good thing about modern travel is that it’s possible to stay connected to your life back home regardless of where you are. Take advantage of these conveniences and don’t totally check out. The more you can monitor things while out of town, the easier it’ll be to enjoy a seamless transition upon your return.