'Summer vacation' is a phrase that elicits a giddy response in both kids and adults.
Finding a much needed break and time to unwind while basking in warm weather -- vacation is the raison d'eatre for the summer season. But recently, the current challenging economic climate has replaced this beloved form of R&R with a counterpart a little more appropriate to tough economic times: the 'staycation'. A 2009 addition to the Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary, the term staycation is defined by Wikipedia as “a neologism for a period of time in which an individual or family stays at home and relaxes at home or takes day trips from their home to area attractions. Staycations have achieved high popularity in current hard economic times in which unemployment levels and gas prices are high.”
While on staycation, diving into the backyard pool replaces taking a dip in the ocean (unless you happen to live in a beach city), appreciating the collection at a local museum instead of taking an art tour through Europe, or visiting your city’s zoo instead of going on an African safari. Enjoying your own digs, or what your vicinity has to offer, the notion behind a staycation is that “vacation is a mindset.” Perhaps a hard sell for some, staycations do have an impressive list of benefits. No packing is required, there are no stresses of travel, staycations help you save money... and as an eco-evangelist individual, I'm also required to mention that staycations reduce your carbon footprint and are easier on the planet. (No air travel, no gasoline for a road trip...).
The cardinal rules of a staycation include foregoing all household chores, and switching gears from work mode -- shut down your computer and legitimately take time off from your job. Also key, plan on having a lot of fun. A staycation isn't designed to play second fiddle to a dream vacation. It should be planned for, include a start and end date, and be filled with fun activities galore. When you take a closer look at your hometown, you're likely to find many outings you've always want to go on but have never had the time to do so, or many sights to see that had previously been marked on your "someday" list.
This article features 37 fresh staycation ideas to help get your wheels turning. Does this mean Frommer's will start going door to door to collect information on the newest popular travel destinations: home sweet homes? When planning your staycation, imagine what you'd want them to write about yours.