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TRAVEL RESOLUTIONS FOR THE NEW YEAR

CALIFORNIA LIFESTYLE
16 DECEMBER 2016

COLLECTION

MAR VISTA 2.0

For people who love to travel, as we do here at Ricardo Beverly Hills, the best time to start planning for the next year’s adventures is before the calendar has even run out on the current year. If you’ve ever felt like you need a vacation from your vacation, you’re not alone: Holiday travel can be particularly stressful, so kick back and start dreaming about the myriad possibilities that lie ahead. After making sure your passport hasn’t expired, check out some of our best ideas for travel in the new year, and find your perfect new travel bag, from carry-on luggage to wheeled garment bags to large spinner cases,

Shop Mar Vista 2.0 here

The world is a big place. Get out there and meet it.


HOW FAR AHEAD TO PLAN?

CheapAir.com crunched a lot of numbers in 2014 and came up with “54.” That is to say, 54 days in advance was deemed to be the average best time to buy a domestic air ticket. However, to say airfares are a moving target is a huge understatement. This tool from CheapAir.com can help by providing a window for historically the best time to buy. For example, a search of Los Angeles to London notes that prime booking window is between 5 and 99 days in advance. That’s a pretty broad range, but it’s a start. Bottom line, research available data for your specific destination to find the best possible bargain. (Tip: For the lowest airfares, look first at traveling on Tuesday or Wednesday.)

EMBRACE THE DEAD ZONE

No, not the Stephen King novel, but those times of year when people tend not to travel, which makes airlines and travel companies eager for customers: Great deals abound. January after the holidays is a notable Dead Zone, so keep an open mind and hunt for the deals to be had. Europe in the winter months may not offer splendid weather, but who cares when lines at popular museums don’t run down the block?  
 

GETTING YOURSELF A GREAT TRAVEL DEAL

There are countless websites designed to do nothing but help you be your own best travel agent, whether you’re planning far in advance or are looking for a last-minute bargain escape to anywhere. Some of the best resources include: Kayak, Priceline, Orbitz, Expedia (with an easy-to-use last-minute section), TravelZoo and Hopper. Many sites let you set personalized fare alerts. With most airlines it’s easy to shop for flexible dates and by using a low-price calendar, two of the best ways to get the biggest bang for your travel buck. (Tip: When you find a good deal, buy, because it may not be there for long. Most airlines allow a 24-hour “cooling-off period” during which you can cancel with no penalty: That gives you 24 more hours to find something better.)

TRAVEL BUCKET LIST

Wherever you go, there you are. And there are so many wonderful places to go, so if you don’t already have a Travel Bucket List, make one and plan to tick a few destinations off your list in 2017. Never been to the top of the Eiffel Tower or the Statue of Liberty? Never stared into the Grand Canyon? Never gone swimming with dolphins? What are you waiting for?

 

CONSIDER VOLUNTEER TRAVEL

A great way to enrich your life and help make the world a better place is to volunteer your time and effort to a charity or community that needs your help-some trips you pay for yourself, some organizations cover a substantial portion of your travel expenses. Search “volunteer travel” or “charity travel” online to get started, or visit here or here to learn more about specific destinations.

ACHIEVE WORK-LIFE BALANCE

Some statistics say that as many as half of all vacation days allotted to workers in the U.S. go unused. Don’t let 2017 be a year where you leave any of them on the table.

 

DON’T LET MILEAGE POINTS LANGUISH

Between frequent flier programs and credit cards that earn travel points, there are few people who don’t have miles racked up somewhere. They never increase in value over time, and airline alliances and code-sharing partnerships can change at the drop of a hat, so if you have enough for a trip, use them when you can. You’ve earned it. (Tip: Plan as far ahead to use miles as possible, but if you’re not able to find anything as your desired departure time approaches, don’t give up. Airlines sometimes release more seats for mileage redemption if they haven’t been able to sell ’em.)

 

TAKE PLENTY OF PHOTOS, BUT…

…be sure to look, too. It’s easy to get wrapped up in getting a perfect shot of a tropical-beach sunset to the degree that you don’t actually experience the sunset itself. Don’t be that person. Try to give yourself a break from Facebook and Instagram and just live in the moment.