10 Tips for a Memorable Staycation

One of the cheapest ways to vacation is by planning a staycation.  Vacationing at home will save on the cost of hotels and car rentals.  While some might say this completely defeats the point of a vacation, I think there is some value in staycations.

Staycations are especially helpful for people with part-time jobs since they can do their job and still vacation.

I’ve moved to a lot of different places in my lifetime.  Here’s the most interesting part – people always travel to someone else’s home city or area to vacation.  My point is that almost all of us have interesting sites and exhibits near us.  However, local residents tend to skip the tourist activities in their own home town, so chances are if you have a staycation, you will see some new sites.

10 Tips for Planning a Memorable Staycation

  1. Be inaccessible to work and friends. The key to a good staycation is letting everyone around you know you are ‘inaccessible’ just as if you were out of town.  Don’t take business calls, and skip your regular extra commitments for the week.
  2. Make a schedule. “What do you want to do?”  “I don’t know, what do you want to do”?”  Avoid this discussion by sitting down beforehand and planning out activities for each day of your staycation.
  3. Splurge in other ways. Since you are saving many of the traditional vacation costs, you can splurge by going to your favorite restaurant that you can’t otherwise afford.  Remember, you still need to keep your spending within your vacation budget.
  4. Unplug. I know that everyone doesn’t like unplugging for vacation, but if you are having a staycation, you’ll just revert back to your regular routine if you don’t unplug.  You’ll spend mornings online and afternoons watching TV.  By unplugging, you force yourself to be creative with your activities.
  5. Set the tone for the kids. Depending on their age, kids will often get as excited as their parents.  If parents approach the staycation from the standpoint that we don’t have any money so this is all we can do, then the kids wills sense that disappointment.  However, if you talk about everything you’ll get to do with anticipation, everyone will be excited.
  6. Consider a night in a hotel. Even if you are having a staycation, you can still spend a night in a hotel – kids usually like hotels.  Check in as soon as possible and stay until checkout.  Enjoy the pool and change of pace.
  7. Research your home area. Plan the staycation just like you would any other.  It is possible that you don’t even know everything there is to do in your home area.
  8. Mom and dad need to get on the same page. If you’re having a staycation, mom might want a break from cooking.  Dad might want an afternoon nap.  Be sure you communicate clearly about what feels like a ‘vacation’.  You don’t want to finish the week and feel like you never got a break.
  9. Put up a tent in the backyard or make a fort in the house. A change in the environment really helps make things memorable.  Do something out of the ordinary.  You might even consider having a night where you turn all the power off in the house.
  10. Take pictures. This is your family vacation, and you’ll want to remember these days.  Even though you are in your own home area, enjoy the sites and sounds and capture them on camera.

This article was included in the Canadian Finance Carnival.

What tips do you have for a memorable staycation?


  1. Fiona Erlandsen says

    Oh we are so rubbish at doing this. Our only options are when we stay at friends and can’t get connected online. It’s so true though. We live in a total tourist destination yet, we rarely visit any of them. We are prompted to go when friends come and stay and want to go. We have an abundance of them near us in Lanzarote. Cesar Manrique’s house, Cactus Gardens, Mirador del Rio, Jameos De Agua. All amazing places as well as a little theme park Rancho Texas. The kids would love to go more frequently. Note to myself to do this when we return home and kids are still on school holidays.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *