Is this the year for a staycation? How to kick back, relax and vacation at home

Summer is typically the time people start planning vacations—Disney World…cruises…the beach. This year, however, travel may not be in the cards. But that doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice down time and fun with the family. Make this the year you plan a fantastic staycation! Here are some tips to make sure you can kick back, relax and have a memorable time with a vacation at home.

  • Unplug completely from work—You’ll never feel like you are on vacation if you are sneaking away to answer emails and Slack messages. Put your staycation on the calendar so your colleagues know that you are incommunicado for the duration of your vacation. Set an out-of-office message for email and other communication platforms…and don’t answer work calls.
  • Take a break from news (and maybe even put mail delivery on hold)—Again, the point is to create the feeling of being on vacation, so lose the news and hold the mail. Both can be a source of stress, so eliminate them for the duration of your “getaway.”
  • Plan destination dinners—If you can’t make it to the beach this year, for example, at least eat like you are living coastal. Before your staycation begins, stock up on meats, perishables and pantry items required to create meals from some of your favorite destinations.
  • Relax outside by candlelight or a bonfire—Getting outside is often a big part of most vacations. Just because you are at home doesn’t mean you have to stay inside. In the evenings, plan time around a bonfire or firepit (make s’mores and other favorite by-the-fire treats), play some relaxing music, and just talk and catch up. If a bonfire or firepit is not possible, create a cozy area with candles to sit and chill.
  • Plan day and evening events with the family—If you have kids, plan outdoor games like scavenger hunts or glow-in-the-dark hide-and-seek (which only requires a few glow sticks…and humans, of course). If you have a pool, plan to spend time soaking up the sun and playing pool games. For indoor fun, go “old-school” and play board games or teach the kids a few fun card games.
  • Make a vacation playlist—Whether inside or out, playing music always adds a fun element, and can help create the illusion of being at a desired destination. For example, if you love the Caribbean, make a playlist of tropical, island-style tunes. Make one or more playlists that everyone will enjoy listening to.

Stay-at-home vacations can be very relaxing and fun…not to mention easy on the wallet. If you plan to stay home this year, apply a few of our tips so you can truly kick back and enjoy a vacation in the comfort of your home.