Lending Club Blog

Simple and Inexpensive Vacations

We often fool ourselves into thinking that the more we spend, the better and more memorable a vacation will be. While money can buy certain memories, the correlation is probably much weaker than you’d expect. In fact, simple and inexpensive vacations are often the most relaxing, and the most memorable.

I love Mickey Mouse and the magic, wonder, and excitement of a Disney vacation. It’s something I look forward to doing with my family. But I won’t go when my kids are too young to remember the experience or often enough that it becomes commonplace and thus boring. I also remember when I went to Disney World as a kid, coming home exhausted, having spent every second of my vacations there trying to have as much fun as possible to justify the high cost of such an experience.

Compare that experience to a recent trip I took hiking in the Rocky Mountains. Even with the high price of gas, driving to my destination was still less than the cost of a single airline ticket to a more exotic location. Spending my days hiking cost no money aside from food and drinks, and I was getting exercise as an added bonus. The Magic Kingdom may be a sight to behold, but has nothing on the views afforded by Mother Nature. Nights were spent chatting with my companions, playing cards, reading, and relaxing. Without an Internet connection or cell phone service, the distractions of home and the worries of work were quickly forgotten. Between the exertion from the hikes and the fresh mountain air, I slept long and deeply each night.

Wherever you live, you can surely find a similar destination nearby. Whether you spend time at the beach, camping in the woods, or hiking in the mountains, you’ll probably find your trip to be much more relaxing than more expensive alternatives. I read recently that each American “owns” 3 acres of land in the form of their share of our National Parks. Make use of your share and you’ll likely have a memorable vacation that exceeds expectations in all categories.

Monday, July 28th, 2008 at 6:30 am

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