Short getaways: Tips to make the most of limited time

Story Antara Bose

There’s nothing more appealing than the thought of a nice long holiday. But let’s face it: taking off for an extended period is not always easy (the boss always cribs, doesn’t he?). And besides, the longer you are away holidaying, the harder it is to get back to the routine once it’s over. So millennials are giving spontaneous, short getaways a ‘thumbs up’, and we couldn’t agree more.  And what does a holiday mean? Exploring a new city, of course! So before you book your tickets to fly out to your next destination, check out these nine tips to make the most of your short getaway.

1)     Let your interests define your hotel booking – Not the price, not the chain (don’t let the urge to accrue loyalty points overcome you), and definitely not because ‘it looks nice in the photos’. Go for a hotel that has the maximum number of your interests closest to it, even if it means spending a little more.   

2)     Plan your commute – The worst place to waste time is in commute. Apart from not choosing flights with long layovers, try and look for the quickest way to travel when you’re at your destination. If trains are the fastest, get a train pass, if tuk-tuks help you cut through the traffic, don’t hesitate to jump into one, and by all means, tell your hotel to call a cab instead of trying to figure it out yourself.    

3)     Befriend locals – Sure, a tourist guide is useful, but that’s if you want to stick to touristy stuff. If you have no one you distantly know, get chatty with people at local cafes. Ask them about places to see. More often than not, they’ll come up with stuff you won’t find online.

4)     Target experiences authentic to the place – If you‘re going to a new place, you’d want to be able to talk about unique experiences that you’ve gathered from that place. These attractions would be easiest to find, so make sure you don’t skip them.

5)     Check out night markets – Night markets offer an experience of their own and it is different in every country. When you’re done exploring the city, unwind at a night market to get a feel of the culture, crafts, and cuisines.  

6)     Look out for happening events in the area before you go – You could just discover an excellent concert lined up in the city during your stay. But even if it’s not your favorite band playing in the hotel next to yours, going for a local event will give you a real feel of the place and its people.  

7)     Always keep local currency in hand – Trying to find an ATM is such a waste of time, especially if you are in a new place and don’t know your way around. While using a card for the majority of your purchases is smart, ensure you do have enough cash for places that don’t accept cards.

8)     Buy a local SIM card – Unless you’ve got an excellent roaming package, it’s always better to get a local SIM. Apart from searching for places, making reservations, and the zillion other benefits that come with staying connected on the go, you’ll also be easily accessible to agents, hotels, and anyone who needs to reach you locally.

9)     Don’t fall sick – This is the worst thing you can do to yourself,especially if you have limited time. Stick to bottled water, don’t overeat in the name of sampling new cuisines, and don’t stay out in the cold if you have a low tolerance to it. Pretty simple things to keep in mind to save your entire trip.