As a Trés Fleek reader, you work hard. So we know that when it comes time to take a break, you want to play hard too.
We’re all about enjoying the fruits of your labor. And one way to do that is by traveling. But how can you do that when you’re busy working hard on your goals? And how can you travel in style and luxury without tripping over price?
Well for starters, you gotta carve out some play time. Even if it’s just an extended weekend trip, regular breaks (i.e. more than 48 hours without working) actually improve your performance.
How? Good question. Let’s examine some ways a vacation will help you kick mo’ butt.
● You’ll feel better for up to 5 weeks after your trip. A study conducted by the University of Vienna discovered that vacationers had less headaches and backaches up to five weeks after their vacation ended.
● You’ll perform better after your trip. One study revealed that when employees took 10 extra hours of vacation, their performance ratings improved by 8 percent. Another study shows that employees who took time off regularly performed better than those that worked all the time.
● You’ll be happier. At the end of the day, when you have time off, you’ll recharge all of your creative and problem solving muscles. Because of this, you’ll actually come back to work with a renewed sense of commitment to your goals and will feel more capable of crushing them.
So if you were thinking of not taking some time off in the upcoming months, think again. Dust off that Google calendar darling, because you’re about to make some time for you.
If that last sentence just made you anxious, we totally get it. That’s why this article was written.
Now this isn’t your normal travel blog post where we’ll tell you to spend hours upon hours scouring websites to find the cheapest prices. Umm…that ish takes lots of time, boo. And we know you already have too much going on as is.
Instead, we want you to plan a top notch trip without breaking the bank or losing any sleep planning it. Tall order, but we’ve got it covered.
Are ya ready to dive in? Let’s get it.
In order to have the stamina to achieve anything worthwhile in the long term, you have to allow yourself some real downtime.
1. Hire an Assistant
When Beyonce wants to take a last minute trip to Miami, she calls her assistant and tells her to make it happen.
*Snaps fingers*. Done.
You can have that same luxury without being a millionaire (and you can even snap your fingers for dramatic effect if you’d like).
Most busy people resort to hiring travel agents to book last minute trips. That’s all fine and dandy, but where do you find one? How do you find one you trust? And to top it off, how do you justify their sky high fees of up to $5,000 or more?
A nice alternative is simply hiring a virtual assistant (VA) for a few hours.
Hiring a VA can be a good way to take care of your travel arrangements while you hustle to get the moolah to pay for it.
Where do you find a VA? Good question. Some great places to check are Upwork, LinkedIn, or even through your own social network.
So now that you know where to look for a VA, what do you do to hire one?
Well, if you use a site like Upwork.com, you’re going to want to follow these steps:
1. Set up a profile.
You can add your photo if you’d like and add a little bit about yourself.
2. Add a credit card.
All this help doesn’t come for free, girl. But the time saved will definitely be worth it.
3. Create a job post.
Most people start searching for VA’s on Upwork then get exhausted by the sheer volume of people to choose from. Listen girlie, you’re way too busy for all of that. Instead, you need to let them come to you. You do that by creating a job post.
A job post is simply your very own classified ad telling people what you’re looking for. If they feel they qualify, they’ll apply to your post. From there, you get to pick the best VA and let the trip-planning begin.
What should your job ad say? Use this as an example:
“I want to go to Switzerland for 8 days in July.
I need someone that is great at finding great flight and hotel packages within a certain price range.
You will not need to book this, but I need a compiled list of links to the top 3 best packages with the URL. Job must be completed within the next 7 days.”
You’ll soon start to see the applicants pour in. Sort through them and find the one you think is the best fit.
Once hired, give them more specific instructions on what you’re looking for in your trip (like having them compile a list of restaurants that serve your favorite foods, checking for flights with specific airlines so you can use your points, etc.).
And just like that, you’ve saved yourself a ton of hours scouring the web for vacation packages.
2. Hire a Driver
When you visit a new city or town, how do you usually get around? Do you rent a car? Do you walk? Take public transportation like the locals?
All of that is great. And you should keep doing it if it works for you. But if you want to add a bit more pizzazz or luxury to your vacay every once in a while, why not try things from a totally different vantage point by being driven around like a celebrity?
Sound impractical? Well, hold your horses and let us explain.
By hiring a driver you get to:
● Avoid wasting time waiting for public transportation (and therefore get to spend more time doing fun things)
● Lower your stress by not having to navigate a new city in your rental car with only your smartphone’s GPS and spotty service giving your directions
● Save money by not having to pay for parking at some of the more touristy sites
● Get immediate access (and insider knowledge) about the city from someone who is a lot more familiar with it than you.
Now, before you say we’re crazy, hear us out. This is not as expensive as you may think. In fact, it’s can even be cheaper than your Uber or Lyft bill. How?
One service that does all this is dryver.com. Using their app, you can hire a driver to drive your car for you, making all the stops you need to make along the way. Expect to shell out something in the range of $15 – $20 an hour for the service.
Unfortunately for our international sistahs, there is no Dryver service available in other countries. But there are alternatives. Try Auto Europe or Household Staffing International to find similar services abroad. Prices vary depending on the type of vehicle you want to be driven around in.
If you’re more budget conscious, you can also book a private tour guide for a day. Their rates are usually quite reasonable, and you can easily find them on sites like TripAdvisor. Best of all, you’ll get to learn even more about the city via a certified expert!
Having your own chauffeur when traveling is not only doing it like a celebrity, it can sometimes end up being the more practical way to go. Talk about living the high life!
3. Have a Kick-ass Experience
When you go on vacation, you want to come back with unforgettable memories (and some Insta-worthy photos, too).
It’s cool to do the normal touristy things, but don’t be afraid to find unique experiences that most people don’t even think of trying (or don’t even know exist). It’s the celeb way after all.
What kind of things do we mean?
● Visit the Leshan Giant Buddha in China
● Go snorkeling in Ecuador and take pictures of endangered species like the giant tortoise and the Galapagos penguins
● Trek across the desert on a Camel Caravan in the Sahara Desert
● Get up close and personal with wild animals on an African safari
You can find these awesome experiences (and more) on TripAdvisor’s “Attractions” section, at Atlas Obscura, or even by checking international Groupon-like sites for inspiration (and some nice prices).
4. Have Fun and Relax
When celebrities travel, they have a blast. You’ve seen the pictures of them frolicking at the beach without a care in the world.
Well, be sure to do just that.
Relax. No, really relax. Take in the sights and sounds of somewhere unfamiliar and really enjoy yourself. Go off the beaten path, make some new friends, and try a new food you never would have if you were back home.
Sleep in. Order room service. Lay on the beach all day (slather on the sunscreen please!).
Whatever you do, don’t think about your To Do List or anything else you’re trying to accomplish. Just bask in the glow of doing absolutely nothing for a few days. Your body and mind will thank you.
Remember To Treat Yourself
It’s a fact that we work entirely too hard and too much. Overworking has become a badge of honor that people talk about all the time.
But in order to have the stamina to achieve anything worthwhile in the long term, you have to allow yourself some real downtime. By taking a break every few months, you avoid burnout, fatigue, and procrastination. And you can have a lot of fun in the process!
In the comments, tell us what trips you’re planning this year.