“Give me all your money!” a familiar voice screams behind my shoulder. I shudder and firmly grasp my wallet. Don’t worry, I am not getting robbed. I am just trying to plan a fancy vacation.
After a whole year spent in shared dorm rooms, I’ve decided it was time to treat myself. I dreamed up a hedonistic paradise with pristine sand beaches, a warm sea, deserted by day and bustling by night, in the midst of the jungle but near a skiing resort, untouched by tourism but with omnipresent WiFi. I then set aside my budget and began panicking… Can you really buy an all-inclusive bracelet to heaven on earth for under, eh, £300? The answer is – yes you can, if you’re really smart about it and forget your unrealistic expectations. Here are a few ideas to inspire you!
1. Glamping in the UK
To me, camping is synonymous with military-style latrines and mosquito bites in inconvenient places. Glamping, on the other hand, brings to mind images of endless supplies of ‘smores, prosecco and vanilla-scented insect repellent. Standard camping can be incredible, but sometimes it’s nice to trade a bit of adventure for a bit of comfort.
I’ve never travelled with them, but I have the Canopy & Stars website bookmarked on my computer and I look at it whenever I need a mental getaway. Their selection of eco yurts, tipis, tree houses and gypsy caravans never fails to temporarily satisfy my wanderlust.
2. Sailing in Croatia
You are standing on the bow of a yacht like a cross between Leonardo DiCaprio in Titanic and the Wolf of Wall Street. The sea and the sky are a uniform shade of blinding turquoise. Are you dreaming? Not necessarily! Croatian company sailing.hr organises incredible yacht trips in the Adriatic Sea and – luckily for you and I – they are incredibly affordable. With 3-4 day trips starting at €199, I can hardly imagine a better way to get a taste of the lifestyles of the rich and famous for less.
3. Beach holiday in Thailand
Getting to Thailand can be a little pricy, but once you get over that initial hurdle you will be in a beachy paradise where a night in a luxury hotel costs the same as your usual Starbucks order! I could try to reason with you some more, but the picture above should be enough to convince you.
4. Spa staycation
So, you think you know your city well? Without sounding condescending, I would like to politely disagree. Staycations can sound a little boring, but how about spending an extended weekend getting rubbed the right way at a nearby spa? You won’t spend much on travel, which means more pocket money for chocolate wraps and relaxing massages.
5. Airbnb anywhere
I booked a flat through airbnb when I was in Berlin this January, while a number of my friends used airbnb accommodation in places like Croatia and Tokyo and we all agree: this website is the bomb. Never before has pretending to be a local been so affordable! If you’re looking for a bit of luxury, why not visit my beloved London or go shopping in New York? Rent in both cities is infamously high, but an entire airbnb apartment will cost you less than a shoebox-sized hotel room, especially if you’re travelling with a larger group.
What do you think? Should you continue wistfully browsing Pinterest in at work or start planning your very own jealousy-inducing vacation? I cannot wait to take my own advice (which is something I do but rarely) and make you all jealous with Instagrams of me partying on a yacht!
Disclaimer: My stay in Croatia will be sponsored by sailing.hr, but you can bet that all opinions about the trip will be my own and my review completely honest. Because, otherwise, what’d be the point?