Need to get away, but unable to either take the necessary time off work or afford a week-long stay at a premium resort? Don’t fret, there’s a way for you to still get away and come back feeling refreshed.
It’s a growing vacation trend in the United States, especially for professionals that might not be able to unplug for more than a week. It’s called the “microbreak,” and it’s not just ideal for your time away from the office, but for your budget as well. Let’s take a closer look at this trend and how to find that next microbreak deal.
So, what is a microbreak? It’s typically defined as a mini getaway of sorts, perhaps a one or two-night trek to a nearby destination to get away for long enough to refresh, but not long enough where you’re out of the loop upon your return. These shorter trips are quickly becoming more popular in the U.S., as up to 90 percent of Americans ages 18 to 65 have been on one within the past year. And the results of a microbreak are promising.
Additionally, it’s estimated that 26 percent of all Americans aren’t planning on taking any type of traditional vacation this year, due to expenses and having to take time off. Yet, according to studies, the majority of short-term travelers report feeling rested, recharged and an improvement in mood.
Aside from saving money and taking less time off, there are a few other key benefits to going the microbreak route for your next getaway. If you drive to your destination — which the vast majority of short-term travelers opt to do — then your schedule is more flexible than if you were to fly. Noting this, you can often make more of a last minute decision to get away, and when you do this, you can often snag a great hotel rate. That’s because a lot of hotels slash prices if there are a fair amount of unbooked rooms to attract more guests.
Secondly, if you don’t want to put the miles or wear and tear on your own vehicle, you can even likely save some money by bundling a hotel and rental car through one of the many travel websites on the Internet. Try to book a hotel with complimentary Internet and morning breakfast to save as well.
Another nice thing about microbreaks is that you can often schedule them around holiday weekends, like Memorial Day, Labor Day, Fourth of July (depending on the day of the week that it falls on) so that you may be able to avoid taking any time off at all. However, it is worth mentioning that you likely won’t be getting any sort of a deal on lodging accommodations at these periods of the year because they’re busier travel times.
Top Places to Plan a Microbreak
Like we said earlier in this piece, your microbreak is best scheduled by geography, unless you have frequent flier miles to burn or can snag a great flight deal. Usually, destinations are within a four-hour drive from your home, allowing you plenty of time to still enjoy the sights and sounds when you factor in travel time.
Here’s a look at some of the most popular destinations to take a microbreak:
- New York City
- Las Vegas
- Los Angeles
- San Diego
- San Antonio
- San Francisco
Tips to Save on a Microbreak
Looking to make your dollars go further on your short getaway? Here are some tips:
- Book an Airbnb over a hotel: Doing this often provides a nice savings, allowing you to allocate money elsewhere.
- Use credit rewards, hotel rewards points: You work hard so that you can play hard. So don’t be afraid to cash in your loyalty points to put toward the “playing hard” portion of things.
- Try taking the train or bus: If you really want to maximize your time spent on a vacation, see if you can travel to your destination by train or by charter bus. Think of it this way: If you’re able to leave in the very early morning hours or at night (and don’t have a problem sleeping on public transportation), you can spend more time at your destination and less time in transit. Traveling by bus or rail is often also much cheaper than by air or road too.