Tips On Creating A Travel Bucket List (And Making It A Reality)
Where in the world do you want to visit? We only have one lifetime (possibly up for debate), so rather than watching travels shows with that sinking feeling that you will never get to visit the places on display, why not create a travel bucket list? When you have something in place, and a few ideas of the towns and countries that set your heart all a flutter, you will have the incentive to try to make your bucket list a reality.
But where do you start? Well, in this article, we are going to give you a few ideas that we hope you find useful.
Okay, so you might be tempted to think small, especially if your finances are in a less than desirable state, but you might miss out on those opportunities you have been craving if you limit your thoughts. So, dream big, and write down any destination that immediately comes to mind. Perhaps you have always wanted to scale the Empire State Building in New York. Or maybe you have always wanted to head out on an African safari tour. Or perhaps you have always wanted to take a cruise on a voyage around the Caribbean. Whatever it is, make a note of those places and ideas that spring to mind, and think outside of the box, as when you're planning a bucket list, you shouldn't burden yourself with limitations or familiarities.
Ask yourself these questions
To help you write your list, ask yourself some of these questions.
> What places have you always wanted to visit?
> What places have always fascinated you?
> What places have excited you when you have heard about them from others?
> What places will take you out of your comfort zone?
> What places make your heart sing when you see them in a magazine or in a film?
Think through each question in turn, take time to answer them, and jot down those destinations that come to mind.
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Commit to research
When you are looking at holidays and trips that you really want to take, then be sure to inspire yourself first before making any decisions. There are probably certain activities that you really want to do, whether that’s a bungee jump, swimming with dolphins or perhaps even doing a cooking class! All of them are achievable if you are inspired to find a way to do them. For example, dolphin tours are a great way to be able to see nature in all its glory and not have to go to a zoo to be able to do so. Seeing nature in its natural environment is an experience that you will never forget and therefore it is important to consider what you want to experience. You can look at where these tours take place and what other activities will be a reality for you. Look at magazines and speak to your friends, what inspires them? There may be something that you just have not yet thought of. Look at getting yourself a map also and pinpoint exactly where you would like to visit and this way you can make a better plan in your mind if you want to visit more than one place at once. Where is easy to get to from each destination and what do they offer, such as museums, good accommodation, a lovely beach. These are all things to consider. Are you interested in the culture of history or is food and culinary treats more important? Get to know your real reasons for travelling.
Do this in two ways.
Firstly, when you're still in the process of creating your bucket list, use those resources that will give you a few good ideas. Check out travel boards on Pinterest, Instagram, and other social media groups. Pick up a few travel magazines from the local store, and check out travel-specific websites online. Check out the travelogues on the television - you can guarantee there will be one faded celebrity or two travelling the world in a camper van or something on the small screen. And dig out your DVD collection or stream something online, and watch the travel movies that will inspire your wanderlust. Hopefully, you will find something to inspire you, so if you do, add the places you like to your bucket list.
Secondly, research the destination ideas you are interested in. Some of them may be impractical, at least in the short term, especially if they are expensive to visit. However, there is no harm in finding out more about them, as by doing a little bit of research at the early stage, you will know whether you really want to visit them or not. So, check the costs, find out what accommodation types are available, research how safe these places are, and check out the experiences that will be on offer to you. If your heart still burns for these destinations after your research, keep them on your list.
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Plan to make your bucket list a reality
After creating your bucket list, don't put it in a drawer, never to be seen or heard of again. Despite your busy life, you need to find ways to make your bucket list a reality. Otherwise, what's the point of creating it in the first place? You will only live with regrets later in life when you discover your bucket list and realise you did nothing to make your dreams come true. So, be of the mindset that you are going to see one or more of your bucket list places within your lifetime, and commit to the suggestions we are going to give you below.
Even budget travel requires some money in your bank account, so make an effort to save money on a daily basis. And for those travel destinations that are going to cost you a small fortune, you will need to make an extra effort to save as much money as you can. So, make savings throughout your life, from finding ways to cut your utility bills to reducing your spending on things you don't need. Open up a savings account for the sole purpose of saving for your travels, and when you have spare money in your account each month, channel it into your savings fund. And if you do come into any extra money - a win on the lottery, a bonus from work, a cheque in your birthday card - add a portion of these to your travel savings.
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Budget your bucket list destination
You might not get the opportunity to visit every place on your bucket list, so prioritise them in order of importance to you. And when you have prioritised them, work out which destination you want to visit first, and then budget your trip. Work out all of your travel expenses, from transport to accommodation, as you will then know how much you will need to save. And then, after working out a rough figure of how much money you will need, create a chart of some kind to let you know how near or far away you are from your saving goals. Pin it up somewhere to give you the incentive to save.
To make your bucket list dreams a reality, you will need to equip yourself beforehand. This is especially true when you have specific activities in mind, as you won't be able to fulfill all of the things you want to do while you're away if you don't have the right skills.
So, on a basic level, do basic prep, such as applying for your passport, working out what luggage you will need, and researching flights and hotel sites for costs and bookings. And then think about the things you do want to do, and start to equip yourself. So, if your heart is set on scuba diving beneath the Great Barrier Reef, for example, you might want to book yourself in for a few scuba diving lessons before you go. If you are desperate to experience a skiing holiday, you might want to hit the dry slopes of any indoor skiing centres near to you if you have never skied before. You might also need to buy some of the gear you might need, so if you are thinking of a skiing holiday, for example, you will need to equip yourself with the right clothing and a set of skis. FlyerDiaries rounded up the best beginner skis if you are new to the sport.
You should think about learning the language of the place you are visiting too. You don't need to learn the entirety of a country's lingo, but if you have a basic understanding, you might feel less nervous about the prospect of travel (and less reason to back out).
And finally, work out your schedule. You might need to book time off work, for example, so when you know you are close to your saving goals, work out when you might be able to travel, and reduce your schedule so you won't have anything holding you back.
With a whole world to explore, you don't want to miss out on any of it if your heart is set on travel. So, create a bucket list, and then do what you need to do to turn it into a reality. You will be glad that you did when you're swimming with the dolphins, skiing down mountains, or relaxing on a Caribbean cruise!