Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Budget for Your Vacation--Pt. 3 (What Kind of Traveler Are YOU?)

So now we've discussed some ways to save for your trip and how to budget for it but there are some other factors you need to take into account before you go much further.

We need to figure out: "What kind of traveler are you?"

In my opinion, it is important to know what kind of traveler you are because how travel defines you and how you define travel will ultimately affect your budget.

There are many different types of travelers and I don't believe that we are all one distinctive type of traveler, rather we are a combination of several types; however, I do believe that there is one defining type that stands out in us more than the others.

Types of travelers? Ask yourself the following questions:
  • Do you travel for enjoyment or is it something you feel compelled to do?
  • Do you travel for extended periods of time or are you satisfied with quick weekend getaways?
  • Do you like domestic travel or international travel?
  • Do you make a budget and stick to it or are you a free spender when you travel?
  • Do you enjoy solo travel or are you inclined to travel with a partner or travel buddy?
  • Do you like to make your own itinerary or do you prefer to buy a tour package that takes care of all the details for you?
  • Are you a history buff who has to see all the historical sites of the place you're visiting, do you prefer art and museums or maybe none of these?
  • What about eco-traveling and adventure traveling?
  • Are you mixing business and pleasure?
  • Will you be taking some courses during your travel or perhaps making a pilgrimage to a religious site?
All of these things will have an overall impact on your budget and they should all be considered as you sit down to decide how much money you will need to make the trip of a lifetime. Personally, I am a mix of all of the above. I prefer traveling for extended periods of time but I also enjoy a long weekend getaway every now and then. I enjoy travel of all types, whether it's domestic or international, but I prefer international travel. I like to stick to a budget but I may decide to spend freely in one particular location. I enjoy traveling both solo and with company. I prefer to create my own personal itinerary when I travel but I am not opposed to purchasing a tour package if it meets my needs. I'm not a history or art buff but I do enjoy learning about what makes each city I visit unique and most of the time, that does involve history and art.

Do some broad research about the places you want to travel to and don't limit yourself to one location. Read about several places and pay attention to what grabs you the most. Is it the chance to see some long standing historical monument? Is it the idea of roughing it in a bare-bones eco-lodge on the beach? Is your favorite sports team going to be having several home games while you're visiting the area? Is there a particular religious monument you've read about since you were a child that stands out in your vacation dream?

If you started doing broad research into several cities across different countries, you probably have a good idea of which one of them stands out in your mind more than the others. Begin picturing yourself there and think about all the things you want to see and the places you'd want to visit while you're there. Find your dream location on google maps and go to the street view; do you see yourself walking down that street on your way to class or to dinner?

Once you're able to determine what type of traveler you are, you will be able to plan travel much more quickly and will have a much better idea of how to budget for your trip, even if you find yourself purchasing a last minute flight for an awesome price that you weren't anticipating.

Here are some fun little quizzes to try to help you figure out what type of traveler you are:

And lastly, don't forget that no matter what type of traveler we believe we are, in the country to which we are traveling, we're probably just considered "tourists". Be kind. Be generous with yourself. Learn a bit of the language and enjoy yourself!

1 comment:

iffatali said...

Without new experiences, something inside of us sleeps. The sleeper must awaken.
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