Planning Your Next Adventure During Lockdown
If, like us, you love your own four walls but cannot help but let your mind wander to exotic locations and the possibility of future adventures, the indefinite nature of the coronavirus lockdown is very frustrating. With no clear idea of when the restrictions will be lifted it is risky booking arrangements that may have to be cancelled if your home or destination country is still limiting international travel.
However, with so many of us having so much extra time on our hands, it seems a shame to waste the opportunity to thoroughly researching the next big adventure. If you plan wisely, it is also possible to get some great deals, as travel companies are keen to drive revenue with attractive offers. Here is our guide to satisfying your wanderlust while you are waiting out the lockdown…
1. What a Pinteresting Location…
Get creative with an online mood-board of destinations you long to experience or re-visit. From accommodation options to historic sites of interest, views from landmark buildings and local delicacies that make your mouth water, plan your trip in pictures to remind yourself why it is worth waiting for!
2. Find the Road Less Travelled
Planning a holiday around the busy comings and goings of normal life is not easy. Scouting around for the best possible deal and constantly navigating the balance between breaking the bank and thinking ‘sod it, you only live once’ leaves many travellers-to-be fatigued before they even set off.
It sometimes feels like the finer details of our trips are abandoned because we don’t have the time or energy to investigate everything in minute detail. Well, here is your chance to do just that! The restrictions of lockdown are the perfect opportunity to read all those traveller reviews and recommendations and discover hidden gems that do not appear in most guidebooks.
If you have a particular passion (we love diving, running, going on long, rambling walks and rewarding ourselves for our efforts by sampling the best local delicacies) it is worth joining online interest groups and plumbing the valuable knowledge of other members who have travelled to your proposed destination. You will be able to pick up insider tips and recommendations from people who really know their stuff and it may just make for a much more rewarding trip when you eventually get there.
3. Brush up on the Lingo
It’s quite annoying hearing people tell you that you should use lockdown to gain a qualification or learn another language, when on most days many of us spend hours trying to distract ourselves from raiding the fridge and the snack cupboard by stringing out basic tasks for twice as long as they usually take.
However, with language-learning apps like Duolingo, you can start learning bits and pieces of another language each day in the time it takes you to check the news online or scroll aimlessly through Facebook, rolling your eyes at the latest Trumpism and trying not to worry that this man holds one of the most powerful roles in the world. Far better to congratulate yourself that you now know how to say ‘apple’ in Italian, than to wonder whether you have the capacity to build and stock a bunker at the bottom of the garden, ready for Armageddon.
We are not suggesting that you will be fluent by the time we are released from lockdown, unless you are one of those rare and driven people who we admire immensely but do not understand at all. However, being able to pick up the gist of conversations and asking for basic essentials when you are travelling is hugely rewarding and the locals will really appreciate the effort you have made (it has to beat talking loudly in English and gesticulating to try and get your point across).
4. If You Book, Book Wisely
If you cannot wait to get away as soon as lockdown is over and we are all given the green light to travel again, it is probably worth booking a last minute deal once the restrictions are lifted. Trying to second guess when we will be able to go and booking in advance is likely to leave you disappointed and out of pocket, so sit on your hands and don’t hit ‘Book Now’ until you know you will be able to honour your plans.
If you have on-going travel insurance through your bank or another provider, check their terms and conditions carefully. Many have made amendments to what they can offer for trips booked after mid-March this year, so make sure you are covered for all necessities before you book.
If, by necessity or desire, you can wait a bit longer to go on your adventure, it is probably safe to book for next year and beyond. However, given the unprecedented nature of the coronavirus crisis, it is more important than ever to seek out deals that offer free cancellation up until fairly near your departure date. Many airlines are temporarily offering free amendments to outbound and return dates in order to try and drive revenue in these difficult times, so you should be able to be flexible with your arrangements, should you need to be.
5. Talk About Your Travel Dreams
It gets boring listening to people tell you how far they ran/cycled/walked on their daily exercise or how tired their dog got playing ball in the garden for two hours (while they tried to social distance from the fridge) – it’s no one’s fault, most of our day-to-day lives make for fairly dull conversations at the moment! Adding your wanderlust wishlist to the conversational mix may prove a welcome diversion from the usual, well-trodden topics. It will also help to keep the dream alive in your mind and you may even pick up some tips and recommendations - or even a similarly enthusiastic travelling companion - in the process.
We hope this post inspires you to delve deeper into planning and preparing your next adventure during lockdown. The Wild & Fine team love to travel vicariously, so when you do finally set out on your next big trip, do let us know, especially if one of our designs is stowing away with you!