With Spring finally here, the smell of summer is in the air. With that in mind, it’s the time of year that many of us start racking our brains, engaging in the challenge of vacation planning the perfect summer getaway. This unavoidable task will be a piece of cake this year, as Downtown has your go to guide for planning the best summer vacation for 2015.

Image: courtesy of deviantart.net
Image: courtesy of deviantart.net

Budget

First things first, you must have a budget. A budget determines the type of holiday you can go on, and unfortunately if it is not huge it does have the ability to rule out some of the world’s more exotic locations, which often are more costly to reach than a normal holiday. Make sure your budget is realistic, affordable, and does not affect your quality of life back home. Also, if you have a destination or trip duration in mind, make sure the budget you set is appropriate for this.

Duration

The duration of your trip will be determined by your budget, vacation time, and also affect the destination you visit. Everyone has different amounts of vacation time and different budgets, so make sure you select an appropriate trip duration to cater to both of these influential factors. If your budget is tight, you will have to make decisions such as whether to take a shorter trip in exchange for nicer accommodation, or vise versa.

Destination

Selecting a destination is probably one of the most important parts of planning a vacation. Firstly, you must make sure the destination is an appropriate choice on all levels, from budget, to duration, and ultimately whether it satisfies your desires for a summer vacation. If you have a week off of work, it probably isn’t the best idea to jet off to Europe, as travel costs are expensive and would better be spent on a longer break. Additionally, if you don’t have a long break you need to ensure that your destination is easily accessible so you can maximise your vacation time. One of the most important factors when considering a destination is safely, you should always investigate to check that your destination of choice is not under immediately threat from issues such as political instability or terrorism.

Transport

Finding flights and appropriate transportation is often the most challenging part of planning a summer vacation. Make sure you investigate all possibilities, and if you have flexibility in your dates, check the box when searching for flights as it could significantly reduce the cost of your trip. Also, if your destination is within both driving and flying distance, decide which option to take based on the amount of time you have for travelling.

Accommodation

Depending on your destination of choice, there can be endless accommodation options and it can often be difficult to seek out which is best suited to you. Obviously accommodation is dependent a lot on budget, however there are other factors to consider such as what you want out of your trip! Would you prefer to stay in all inclusive resort style accommodation that is a little secluded? Or maybe you are just after the best location in the heart of town. Our top tip is research, research, and more research. Once you know where you want to be and what sort of accommodation you would like, get on trip advisor and check out some reviews to make sure the place is right for you.

Activities

If you have any activities in mind, make sure you plan and book in advance to ensure that you don’t miss out – this also applies to restaurants! If you’re looking for recommendations, locals, taxi drivers, and hotel staff are always a good source of information. If your hotel has a concierge they often have brochures and flyers from local companies that host activities, and can always provide good insight. They also can help you with bookings and arranging transport to the activity. Additionally, you can also read reviews of activities on trip advisor and other online forums which will help you determine which activities are the best for your trip.

Image: courtesy of thestylemogul.com
Image: courtesy of thestylemogul.com

So when you eventually get around to planning your 2015 summer vacation, look no further than Downtown’s guide to planning the perfect summer vacation!

– By Lizzie Crittenden