How to plan your holiday trip?

For a couple of days now I have been planning my holidays and while writing down the packing list I realized, that being so busy with travelling to my grandma’s house, being a perfect “housewife” and preserving pickles and zucchini I got from my aunt’s garden, I didn’t have any time to write a new blog post. Feeling a little bit guilty (as you do when you totally ignore something) I decided to finally get to work and prepare a post.

It would’ve been great if I had an idea what to write about, though. I don’t know if other bloggers feel the same way, but sometimes I can write an entire 10 page essay on the most mundane topic and other times I am just blocked, even if I had a great idea. But then, right in that moment, while writing the word “charger”, I got enlightened – I’m sure by now you now where this is going – so yes, another “how to” blog post, but hey! It’s an up to date topic for all of us happy campers!

1. Make a list of things to pack.

I know you might think everybody knows that already, but frankly speaking I met various people who don’t plan what to take for a trip at all. To be frank, I once went canoeing with some of my friends and one of them totally forgot to take a swimming suit and water shoes. I was surprised and asked how that happened, and she simply said she packed as she normally does, not for this particular trip. Since then, after a very lengthy trip to a shopping mall to purchase the swimming suit, she is that much wiser.

Make sure you prepare the list at least a week in advance. That way, for the days leading to the departure date you will have a chance to round out your list if you recall any item necessary. Also, it will allow you to purchase things you don’t have yet – in my case, I wrote sandals, hat, shorts and water shoes, since mine from last year weren’t too good and they let little stones get into the shoe and annoy the living hell out of me.

Bonus tip: make sure to pack all of the medicine you will need (especially prescription pills).


2. Buy ticket in advance.

And I do mean all of the tickets. As I mentioned in one of my previous posts about saving moneyΒ Β I am not very keen on spending cash right now, as I’ve been trying to save up some. I have already booked my plan tickets and if I knew earlier when am I going to go for holidays I’d book them even several months ago. I also will now book train tickets, bus tickets and make all the other reservations which will allow me to save some and use special offers.

For these holidays I am going to stay in my boyfriend’s friend’s house and therefore I don’t have to book any accommodation, but if you don’t have that luxury I advise you to use to book in advance and use their discounts. Also, make sure you look for the best offer possible – many of the reservations can be cancelled and exchanged if you find a better last-minute offer. I’ve never done it as I feel people prepare their rooms for you and cancelling last minute is quite mean, but you can still do it and save some.


3. Buy the currency in advance.

Generally speaking the smaller city you exchange money in – the better. Also, you can book currency in an online exchange office and make sure the difference in rate doesn’t eat a big portion of your money. What is crucial is to never exchange on an airport, near borders or in shopping malls.

This year I’m going to visit Croatia and the currency there is kuna, which is roughly 0,14 Euro. Knowing the rate I can evaluate how much money I need to exchange before leaving. I make sure to have some back-up cash just in case I exceed the limit I imposed on myself and I advise you to do the same. You can never know what happens and it’s always better to be prepared and not stress-out.


4. Prepare for the trip itself.

Being fashionable is hard, but being fancy on a 6 hours flight is close to impossible. The rule to always dress the part in any situation is valid here as well. In case of flying for holidays, you definitely should wear comfortable, easy to remove shoes (at security check and aboard), have some sweater to put on (it can get a little chilly), and wear jeans which are not too tight (which will not cramp you).

If you’re going by car, pack water, snacks and make sure your luggage fits in the trunk. There is nothing worse than travelling like a crazy gipsy family on crack.


5. Buy travel guides.

As I mentioned hereΒ having a travel guide is vital to sightseeing the site to the full extent. Make sure you buy guides that are worth the price – read opinions first and purchase the one with the highest note. Also, make sure to buy guides detailing the specific site you’re visiting – for example: not Portugal, but rather Lisbon or Algarve.

I am a very detailed traveller – I like to know all the pieces of information about things I’m going to see. For example, if you’re looking at a very old, beautiful church in Budapest only if you’re going to read a part of its history and get to know its name you’re gonna know and remember what it is, otherwise it will be just another church.


6. Look for things to sightsee beforehand

Making a plan (not very detailed) of what you’re going to do during your holidays is vital. As I mentioned in one of my previous posts, for me it is crucial to incorporate all types of leisure activities in your trip, so that you don’t end up simply laying flat on the beach baking your butt. It is vital to remember to plan some sport, some relax and some entertainment time in equal parts. That way you will not get tired of any of them and will be well-rested when you come back.

Right now I am browsing through various blogs to find things to do/see in the part of Croatia I’m travelling to. So if you, by any change, know beautiful places to see in Croatia near a city of Zadar, please let me know in the comments.

7. Return a day earlier

Even God rested for one day – at least that’s what the Bible says. Holidays and all the travelling can be tiresome, so make sure to return a day before and have an additional day for simply relaxing at home and sorting all the things out before returning to work.


And how about you? Do you have any tips for planning holidays?


69 thoughts on “How to plan your holiday trip?

  1. I find it so much easier and causes so much less stress to be super duper organised for holidays! I write SO many lists prior to it to keep everything in check and make sure everything is sorted. And I can’t believe there are actually people who return from their holiday and go straight back to work, it baffles me. What about your day to do absolutely nothing!?
    Alice Xx

  2. Great tips!! So exciting that you are going to Zadar! I’m sure you are going to love it! I was only there for a day so I don’t have any recommendations for that area but you will find some great places to visit πŸ™‚

    Have a great weekend!


    Seize your Style

  3. Great tips… can’t go wrong with early planning for any trip whether it is local or overseas.. I’ll definitely keep in mind all tips your shared whenever plan my next trip…thanks for sharing…❀️

  4. I love to travel and it mixes with my blood. I get a little time to travel. But when I get a chance to travel, I visit my favorite places. Hope It would be a great place for traveling. Thanks for this interesting blog.

  5. Fortunately, my Dad and my brother are both experienced travel agents. So from a young age I was prepared for the do’s and don’ts of planning a trip or holiday. Many of those you’ve outlined here!

    I write lists, lots of lists! Lists of things to take, things to do, places to go – if it can go in a list, it’s on there. Preparation is key.

    I’m a little extra though and always have an itinerary ready. When I’m at the airport and going to and from, I have a folder in my carry on that has everything I need it in (currency, boarding pass, ticket, password, vouchers or booking confirmations). It’s all in order of when it’s needed to, so I can just whip it out and move on to the next thing. My husband laughs at me, but have we ever been late… missed anything… lost anything… not know where or what we were doing? No lol. He thanks me later, haha.

    Laura Β¦

  6. Absolutely agree with you, lists, lists, and more lists! I start ages in advance, things I know I will forget, while I am using something I want to take I write them on my list. Spare glasses, contact lens is a must for me not to forget! Great post lovely!

    Janet xx

  7. Your tips are amazing! Planning ahead is very important for me too, so I already know in advance what sights I want to visit. To take your medicine with you is a must, I’ve just done a trip to Oslo and totally forgot to take everything with me. Luckily I didn’t get sick.

    xx Simone
    Little Glittery Box

  8. These are all really great travel tips! Recently this year I’ve started making a packing list and it definitely helps me remember to bring what I need for each particular trip. I completely agree with planning some sights to see before hand. I’ve been on trips before where I didn’t plan enough and spent too much of the day in my rental figuring out what to do. I never thought about buying a travel guide, so thank you for that idea!
    And Amen to returning a day early!

    x Kara |

  9. Great tips! I’m that person who can’t go anywhere without having every little thing organised, there are always so many lists! I feel so stressed otherwise haha, there’s always so many things to plan! Buying tickets in advance is so important, saves so much money! Great post x

    Evie x |

  10. Depending on the trip often times we can feel like we need a vacation after our vacation so coming home a day in advance or with a day before returning to work is a great idea. We need time to get back into sync with our daily routine.


  11. Absolutely loving this post as usual Dorota! I have a tendancy to be a bit sloppy on the organisational front, however, I’m going to be on holiday in exactly 5 days and 2 hours from now, so I made sure I planned everything in advance this time! These are really helpful tips – I wasn’t going to but, after reading this, I think I’m going to go and get my money changed tomorrow whilst I’m out! Thanks so much! x
    Marina Rosie x

  12. These are great tips on planning for a vacation! Planning on what to pack is super important. I love organizing my looks so I don’t over pack yet still have what I need. Thanks for sharing! XO, Ellese


  13. Great tips, Dorota! I always procrastinate when I have to pack. This is giving me motivation to make a list now! πŸ™‚ I can totally relate to writer’s block too. Sometimes, I have a lot to say and sometimes I wonder about what I will write about. Fortunately, something eventually comes to mind. πŸ™‚

  14. Thank you for sharing these great tips Dorota. I am a list maker too. Making a list helps me keep organized and stay on track on what I need to accomplish before any trip. Luckily for me my hubby is an experienced traveler. He always does all the research on everything, especially on finding food close to or walking distance from our hotel, lol.


  15. What a brilliant guide! My husband and I used to travel a lot before having a little one and we would spend months in advance trying to figure out what to do and not to do, where to go, best places to eat and which tourist traps to avoid. Sometimes it’s nice to wing it while travelling but it never hurts to be prepare either.

  16. This is a great checklist hon. I totally agree about making sure you pack all your medicines. I have a few medicines that if I don’t take can lead to awwwful stuff happening, so when I write my packing list. Medication is always high on my list And I totally agree about trying to get back a day before work, so you don’t suffer from vacation whiplash ( ;

  17. Returning a day earlier is so important, I always need time to unpack and settle back in. Croatia is absolutely stunning, enjoy your time there! My travel tip would be to always wear multiple layers on flights so that you can easily adjust your outfit to the temperature. Oh and a packing list is always a good idea although I tend to overpack haha. xx

  18. As someone who travels quite a lot, I definitely agree with your points! Well, maybe except the one about travel guides, since most information can be found online these days πŸ™‚ Great post!

    Scent of Summer

  19. I agree with all your tips, well ,for me, I usually add “find new local friend” , because I usually travel with my sister only and we like to travel while make friends with local people too, that’s why we always find new friend before going to the destination πŸ™‚


  20. Great, great tips. I actually use Google Maps and Google Earth and get to the street view levels. In that way, I have an idea of what the place looks like so I don’t get lost! (I have the worst sense of direction haha)
    xoxo Ros (

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