Oh the Places You'll Go...
One of the most fun things I’ve gotten to do while single is travel. I had the opportunity exactly a year ago to go to London, Paris and Rome. I absolutely loved every minute of it! I would encourage any of you ladies to travel while you are single. It’s such a great chance to learn more about the world and yourself. When I was in Europe I just loved watching the people and seeing them go about their daily business. It made me realize that we’re not so different. Everyone is dealing with many of the same struggles no matter where in the world they are located.
If you are in a season of singleness, you may be tempted to delay traveling until you have met the right person so that the two of you can have these great experiences together. I would caution you against this way of thinking. When I went to Europe I didn’t have anyone to go with, so I went as part of a group tour which was an amazing experience! I got to meet so many new people from all different walks of life. This made the trip so great and way more interesting than it would have been!
Because I was by myself, I didn’t get that romantic kissing in front of the Eiffel Tower moment that I would’ve liked, but I got so much more. I learned about myself and grew as a person. I have definitely become more interesting and well rounded as a result. If you delay life experiences because you want to have the right person by your side, you will end up with very few experiences. News flash, guys don’t want to date a girl who has no thoughts, no opinions and no experiences to talk about! Okay, well some guys do, but those are not the men we are looking for! Travel will broaden your life experience and make you more attractive. If you want to find a man who wants to travel and have adventures, you need to get off the couch, get out there and start traveling and adventuring!
The great thing about travel is that you can go somewhere more than once! If it’s always been your dream to honeymoon in Italy, don’t be afraid to go by yourself first! This won’t take away from the specialness of experiencing new places with your husband, but rather add to the experience. When I go back to Paris, I now know that the Louvre is breathtaking, that the Eiffel Tower needs to be viewed at night to be fully appreciated and that Moulin Rouge isn’t worth the money. Your experiences while single will be valuable additions to your life as a married woman, not detractions.
There are tons of great ways to travel even without a husband or boyfriend. As I said earlier I went on a group tour, which I would highly recommend. It’s a bit intimidating if you don’t know anyone, but I found everyone to be extremely friendly and welcoming. If a group tour isn’t your style, you can’t go wrong with a girl’s trip! I’ve been to Vegas, Nashville, Gatlinburg, San Antonio, Walt Disney World and several other places with girlfriends. All of these trips were amazing and we all had a blast! It’s also great to get to know your girlfriends better in a different environment other than work or school. Another way I like to travel is with my parents. Even though we have vastly different opinions of what makes a good vacation, we always manage to have fun. I spend a few days at the beach with my parents and grandparents almost every year and it’s always a great experience.
If you are wondering how to make your travel dreams a reality, here are a few tips!
First, pick a location. It’s hard to get excited about a trip if it’s just a vague idea. Decide where you want to go. Once you pick a location, you can start researching activities and places to stay. Planning makes the trip feel like more of a reality and you can start to get excited!
Second, decide what your budget is. Notice I didn’t put the budget piece first. If you are absolutely dying to go somewhere try and find a way that you can make it work with your budget. There are tons of ways to save money at just about any location. If you can’t afford to fly, drive. If you have to fly, try and book a flight on a budget airline. Traveling off season can also save you tons of money. If you are dying to go to Miami, spring beak is probably not the most budget friendly time. Find out when peak season is and try and go just a week or two earlier or later when hotels are cheaper. Where you stay and eat can drastically change the cost of a trip. A trip to Europe will be much more affordable if you stay in hostels and eat at open air markets rather than staying in fancy hotels and eating at famous restaurants. The key is to adjust your spending so that you can experience what means the most to you! If you love food and wine, maybe cut out some shopping; if you love historical tours, maybe skimp on your food budget. You may not be able to do it all, but you can do the things that mean the most to you!
Third, decide what type of trip you want to have. Are you looking to relax? Do you want to shop? Do you want to immerse yourself in history? Deciding what you want to accomplish on your trip is really important. This will also decide who you do or don’t invite to join you on your trip. Make sure you and your travel companions have the same type of trip in mind. For example, if you go to Orlando thinking you just want to relax by the pool and soak up the sun, but your travel companion wants to go to all of the theme parks, things may get stressful. Having a basic idea of what you want your trip to be like will help you plan and budget for your trip. I’m not saying that every minute of the trip has to be planned out, but if you don’t have any plan at all you may miss out!
I hope that this encourages you to take the leap and plan a trip! Whether you plan a weekend camping trip in your home town or a month long excursion in Europe, you will not regret it! Travel and adventures will help shape you into the amazing person God wants you to be!