Best tips and hacks to plan an amazing summer of travel

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Best tips and hacks to plan an amazing summer of travel

By Louise Slyth

Memorial Day is approaching and marks the start of the summer travel season. Americans are lucky to be able to experience beaches, forests, or deserts without ever leaving the country. Narrowing it down can be the tricky part!

How to decide where to go

The US has it all, so it’s often helpful to think about what you want to do, rather than where you want to go.

Are you looking for an experience to remember?  Try unforgettable New Orleans, where you can sample jazz, voodoo, and world-famous beignets. Or how about a great road trip like Route 66?

Serious shoppers need look no further than New York with its flagship stores and sample sales. The ShopDrop app gives you the skinny on all the best deals and sales.

Why not visit our nation’s capital and take in the many museums, including the National Museum of African American History and Culture, or take in one of the Jazz Programs offered by the National Museum of American History?

Looking for more inspiration? Visit The USA has a great trip ideas section.

Set a travel budget

Wherever you decide to go, it’s always a good idea to work out a budget in advance. Bear in mind that your vacation costs won’t be restricted to just travel and accommodation. You need to consider food, incidentals like park or museum fees, and of course, tips. If you are traveling with friends, it might be worth setting up an app like Splitwise to help manage shared expenses like dinners.

Naturally, your budget will determine your accommodation. There are a multitude of options to meet every budget, from couchsurfing to the latest hot hotels. Many hotels offer the best deals on their own website, and it’s often worth a phone call to check the best rate they can offer.

Camping and Overlanding

Camping is a pocket-friendly way to get back to nature, and it’s growing in popularity.  According to the North American Camping Report, “Camping accounted for 40% of all leisure trips taken in 2021”. The KOA website has lots of campsite information and useful resources. You can also download the app to help you plan your trip and even provide directions to your campground.

Whilst the freedom of the open road might be appealing, some of the more popular camping spots will require reservations. The most iconic campsites like The Grand Canyon or Arches National Park book up months in advance. Whilst there are acres of public lands where you can camp for free, you’ll need to consider that you are unlikely to have access to toilets or running water. However, there are some great apps to help you plan – the dyrt has information on free campsites and public lands, and iOverlander is a great resource to help wild campers find laundry or shower facilities.

Beach Life

For those seeking pure white sands, great nightlife, and shopping, it’s hard to see past Miami. Miami also offers access to the Everglades National Park, a World Heritage Site. Or for something truly different, you can join the Sea Turtle Patrol on Hilton Head Island.

Families will love the wide-open spaces of Amelia Island or St Augustine, Florida. Both offer plentiful activities, museums, and wildlife-watching opportunities.

If you’re looking for a party vibe, look no further Atlantic City with its boardwalk, nightclubs and casinos, or Oak Island, North Carolina, which offers a variety of recreational options.

What are you waiting for?

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Louise Slyth is a communications consultant and freelance writer.  Her work has been featured in publications around the world including HuffPost, The Independent, Reader’s Digest, Resonate Travel and Image magazine. She lives in Dublin with her husband. You can connect with her on Instagram @louiseslyth_writer  or on Twitter @louiseslyth
Images: Canva