How To Fulfill Your Wanderlust Locally, On a Budget

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November and December are probably the two most difficult months of the year when it comes to traveling for pleasure. Most of your vacation days and air miles are spent visiting family and friends back home, and by the time you get yourself out of the disaster that is an airport during the holidays, you swear to yourself that you’ll never set foot near an airplane again.

Fear not, fellow stressed out holiday travelers! Here are some great ways to quench your thirst for traveling without interfering with your holiday plans or spending a fortune.

Explore Your Town

There are plenty of things you can do right in your own backyard that will help you silence that voice in your head that keeps screaming it is time for a vacation. Grab some friends and head to a nearby mountain for a hike, or explore the new art or food scene in your area. If you are stuck and can’t seem to find anything inspiring to do, check out Groupon of LivingSocial to see what is around you that might peak your interest. You might even get a great discount!

Take A Mental Health Day to Explore

This is so important. Sometimes we have a deep urge to go on a getaway when life gets tense or stressful. Before you make any big decisions, take a mental health day away from work and responsibilities and spend it how you see fit. Take a day off to head to your local mountain to ski or relax at an authentic Korean spa for the day. Take this time to reset and unwind, and you will be amazed at how much better you feel the following day. Sometimes you just need a day off, not an expensive vacation.

Travel Domestically

We get it. Work is stressful, the holidays are tough, and sometimes exploring around your neighborhood just won’t do it for you.  Look into traveling domestically during your winter weekends. By planning a road trip with girlfriends or a romantic getaway, you are getting yourself out on the open road without having to worry about crowded airport terminals and luggage fees. The sweet spot is traveling somewhere you can get to in a day, preferably a 3-4 hour drive form your house, and find cheap hotel accomodations. By keeping your drive time short, you can spend most of your Saturday and Sunday exploring a new place instead of setting aside one full day for driving.

Throw Yourself Into Planning Your Next Big Getaway

Okay, maybe none of these options are financially or logistically feasible right now. Instead of stressing yourself out and breaking the budget, start looking into whatever your next big vacation is. Whether it’s booked or not, you can have fun planning out the details without having to commit to anything right now. You can always check back with your new travel plans after the holidays are over when life calms down and you don’t have to worry about buying your boyfriend’s picky mother the perfect gift.

Make a Pinterest Board

This is actually more helpful that you think. Exploring the world through pictures on Pinterest is a great way to get ideas and keep your brain traveling even though you are stuck in one place. Pins can also lead to cool blogs of articles that will help you plan future trips, or maybe even teach you some great travel hacks for your flight back home for the holidays.

Brooke Schuldt is a freelance writer interested in fashion, beauty, lifestyle and feminism topics. Her work has been featured on various print and online outlets, including Parents Magazine,, Ed2010, and Deux Hommes.

When Brooke is not focusing on her magazine career goals, she can be found knitting, teaching herself French, or updating her personal blog. Her bucket list includes traveling around the world, a shopping spree at Kate Spade, and writing a New York Times Bestseller.



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