How To Make Your Vacation Getaway To Go Off Without A Hitch

A castle in France or a beach house in South Africa – Advice of the Grey World Nomads on how to find your dream holiday getaway.

Finally it is so far – you are excited as you are going to plan your vacation! Maybe you are looking for a romantic Getaway with your partner to be spoiled in a luxury hotel? Or, is it time for a family get together with all grand kids in a villa with swimming pool somewhere at the coast? 

Newquay, Cornwall, England

Choose the perfect destination for your holiday

What’s your budget?

Sometimes you can get luxury on a budget but generally the money will be guiding your choice in accommodation rather than destination. Nowadays it’s sometimes cheaper to fly to a tropical island than to pay for petrol and road tolls.

Hotel At The Coast Of Newquay, Cornwall

How far in advance is it best to book your vacation or should you just go at a venture and hope for good deals on the spot?

First of all, we haven’t had any food experiences not planning in advance and hoping for deals on the spot in all our years of traveling. On the one hand it’s terribly stressful to find out all the hotels are booked because of an event and on the other hand it’s pretty uncomfortable to spend a night in the car (all experienced before, believe me!). It’s highly unlikely that you get a deal on the spot anyway.

Holiday Homes At The Coast Of Brittany, France

Several experienced travelers recommend on their blogs to book flights about six weeks in advance. That might be good enough to grab your best deal in flight tickets but for accommodation especially hotels and vacation homes it’s too late if you are opting for in season bookings. Plan at least three months in advance, if possible earlier, to be able to choose and pick your desired preferances amidst the holiday homes and hotels.

Indefinite Walking Opportunities In Brittany, France

How extended is your traveling tribe?

If you plan your retreat just for yourself or as a couple you are flexible enough to go where you want and have normally a indefinite choice of accommodation. The bigger your family or group of friends is, the more planning is involved. If you plan a flight go to a travel agent as they find you better deals as if you book online individually.

As for the accommodation you might want to opt for a vacation rental instead of hotel rooms to save on your budget. You get also group deals in hotels but for the money you safe on restaurant costs you will be able to spend much more on chosen activities.

View From Our Romantic GetAway In Cape Town, South Africa

What’s your time window for your holiday?

Most but not all holiday homes are rented from Saturday to Saturday. Be aware that their are roads to popular holiday resorts which might be VERY busy on Saturday’s. If you get a deal with another start and end date that saves you a lot of stress on the road.

For hotels it’s not essentially anyway when you book in, but you might get better deals on a Sunday’s arrival.

How far are you prepared to travel?

You don’t have to go just around the corner to spend your holidays to safe money, to feel safe or to be able to speak your own language. If you get an adventurous thrill in airports and you love to fly like we do, there is not much what can stop you from taking a flight to a paradise like destination for your holidays. Even more if your pooches are well cared for with house sitters at your home. But it’s all your own taste what you prefer.

View From Holiday Home In Morgan Bay, South Africa

What’s the weather like?

You can’t be guarantied good weather where ever you go. Is it essential for you that the sun warms your weary bones which were exposed to crabby weather over the last few months? Take the weather charts of your destinations and check out the average temperature and sun hours. When is the best time to travel? You don’t want to end up in the Monsoon month or hurricane season in your dream destination!

How to book your dream holiday retreat

There you go, you decided on a destination and you are ready to book. What’s better: to book your holiday as a package with a tour operator or directly online by internet? There are advantages on both sides. With a tour operator you get advice with longstanding experience and a professional on your side if something on your travels goes wrong. The price might not be much higher if you book your holidays over a travel agent as he gets his share primarily from the hotels and small portion from the airlines.

If you don’t worry to research your desired holiday accommodation on the internet and take your time to read reviews it’s nowadays very easy to find retreats to your taste. Just make your credit card ready and the anticipation can start!

Exotic GetAway In Zanzibar
Exotic GetAway In Zanzibar

Unforgettable Getaways we experienced

A white washed stone-house with unspoiled sea view in Brittany, France

It was time to catch up with my mother after a year being traveling abroad. So we decided to spend a week in June in a dog-friendly two-story typical white washed stone-house in Brittany, France, with unspoiled sea view and enjoyed some splendid walks along the coast and delicious seafood in quaint towns. We will repeat the experience this year but in the region of Biarritz.

Dog-friendly holidays with my mother in Brittany, France

A family get together with fathers, uncles, aunts , nieces and kids

Some of the extended family were to celebrate a milestone birthday of 40, 50 and 60 years. Reason enough to rent a lcastle in the south of France close to the Pyrenees with plenty room for all family members and to live for once in our lives as aristocrats. An unforgettable experience not only for the kids!

Family Reunion In Castle, France

A week with the adult kids at the southern most point of South Africa

It’s difficult to see our adult children as we are traveling ourselves as Grey World Nomads around the world relentlessly. Therefore it was quite an achievement to find a date in our calendars where we could manage to spend a week together in a spacious tastefully furnished house in Struisbay, South Africa. The best way in our opinion to spend time together and to catch up on our lifes is to spend holidays together. You may want to check out HomeAway for some awesome Getaways.

Southernmost Tip Of Africa



This post is not sponsored. All pictures are our own.
© greyworldnomads

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Author: Marcelle Simone Heller

I’m searching for natural beauty and wilderness, while I’m travelling relentlessly to find delightful places and encounters with wildlife. I try to capture the thrill of the moments in photography and words, hoping to inspire others with the love for animals and nature.

33 thoughts on “How To Make Your Vacation Getaway To Go Off Without A Hitch”

  1. Great post with very useful tips!! I definitely agree with booking flights 6 weeks before. What I’ve noticed is that if you book too early it’s as expensive as last minute, I was shocked to experience that. And hotels are definitely cheaper on Sundays 😀

    Thank you so much for joining #MondayEscapes once again 😉

  2. Some great tips. Like that you point out that the “six weeks ahead” planning isn’t always the best if you’re traveling during high season. And agree that checking in on weather, especially for the actual time your visiting is important. Thanks for sharing.

  3. Great guide on how to plan a vacation. That is awesome that you had a family get together in a castle! It must have been an amazing experience for everyone.

  4. Very timely post, Marcelle!
    My sister just asked me to meet her in Jamaica in 3 weeks. Not much lead time but I’m looking forward to catching up with her and our other sister. I’m checking for tickets online and for a place for us to meet. Most importantly, I’m bubbling over in anticipation!

    What was it like to visit the southernmost tip of Africa? It looks pretty desolate. Was it?

    1. The southernmost tip of Africa is quite a remote, not very touristy place as most people thing the southernmost tip is the cape of good hope which is actually wrong. The landscape is rough, battered by the strong winds but beautiful.

    1. I’m not comfortable to just show up at a place either because it’s such a pity if you like it and it’s fully booked (or you like it but it is over budget).

  5. Great topic! I generally plan a few weeks ahead while my partner hates planning! He would gladly rock up a place and see what’s there to do and see. Now, we have a good balance going on planning things like flights and accommodation but everything else is pretty much up in the air.

  6. Great tips for those with a lower risk profile. We quite often book at last minute (rarely 3 months in advance) but think we’ve got our own ways fairly well sorted now to know what we will and won’t out up with. There are always of course some things where booking ahead is necessary, but I try to limit these.

  7. Agree with your advice in here! There are times when you only have long holiday weekends to travel. For those times, you have to book accommodation for in advance. The same goes for certain US National Parks during summer. Campgrounds and nearby accommodations can sell out a year in advance. So, do not assume the booking time of one destination applies to another. It can be a headache when you have almost finalized plans but you cannot find accommodation.

  8. I have found one good way of getting good accommodation deals is to sign up for the accommodation that I want to stay at newsletter. This is how I have booked our family holiday for the next school holidays.

  9. Indeed being prepared before you travel can be good for most people. Personally I always end up ruining my travel preparations due to unexpected change of plans… hehe . Your most important point to me is How far are you prepared to travel. I’ve been trying to go as far as I can – away from Sahara Desert. Greetings from south Morocco!

  10. Planning in advance goes a long way when regardless of what type of travel you’re going for. I’d have to agree that research is definitely essential when it comes to planning!

  11. Great tips! In my experience though, even with planning, there is still always a chance for glitches and mishaps. It pays to be prepared but we must be also flexible depending on the situation. Nice family getaways you have there!

  12. For timing, I like to book anything that you can cancel without losing any money as soon as possible, with nothing to loose why wait? Then I book the non refundable stuff like a plane ticket 4-6 weeks out, depending on the destination. Safe travels!

  13. Meeting up with family in a holiday house is a great way to reconnect. I can see myself planning holidays like this in the future.

What do you think? Your comment is most appreciated.