3 Steps to Taking Time Off
Now that you’re done with the holiday season, it’s time to start thinking about how you will use those vacation days for 2018.
Why now you ask?
Well if you’re like most Americans you only get 2 weeks for vacation and not enough sick days for all the “mental health” days you will need to counter burnout. Combat any and all burnout by planning time off early and wisely.
Here are 3 easy steps for making the most of those vacation days and avoiding the burnout:
1) Schedule It
I always say if it’s not on my calendar it doesn’t exist. The same goes for vacation if you don’t schedule time off, you won’t get time off. January is the month to pull out your calendar and start looking at possible dates and destinations. While you may not know where you want to go for that entire 2-week vacation time pick one week for your big vacation and spread out 2 days here, 1 day here and so on along the way. Don’t forget to leave days open for weddings, birthday trips, bachelorette parties and more.
2) Use Holidays Wisely
If you’re not getting paid overtime for working a holiday, always plan to travel around established holidays such as Martin Luther King Day (Monday, January 15, 2018), Memorial Day (Monday, May 28, 2018). The holidays observed on Monday’s make it easy because you already get an extra day added to the mix. You can easily tack on a Friday as well to make it a 4 day weekend.
It does get a little trickier on holidays like Independence Day which lands on a Wednesday this year. Even holidays like Thanksgiving or Christmas can be tricky when everyone in the office wants the days leading up to them or after them off. If you can’t get the day before these holidays off, fly early on the day of, prices are usually cheaper then.
3) Book Early
Booking early gets you the best options. Booking last minute at last minute deals gets you what’s left. But here’s the thing: the travel industry is gradually moving away from last minute deals and rewarding those who book early with preferential rates, special packages and more. This is especially true with cruises on the most popular routes. You’ll be more likely to find the best deals in January when the industry pushes its biggest sales and biggest incentives. Sometimes the early rates may be non-refundable, which makes it a good idea to buy good travel insurance should you need to cancel the trip
What you don’t want to do is frantically search for destinations that fit the budget at the last minute when you’re already stressed out and try to ask (a.k.a. beg) for the days off, all while hoping that the price doesn’t go up between the time you request it off and your boss possibly approves it.
In the end it all boils down to using your time wisely, making the best of your vacation and having time to rest, relax and rejuvenate.
KJ is an avid traveler who opened her travel agency in 2012, focusing on international travel after leaving the Financial industry. She loves traveling off the beaten path with her favorite destinations being Colombia and Ethiopia. When she’s not busy planning trips for her clients or leading tour groups she’s busy figuring out her next destination. Got a travel-related question, she’s the one to ask.