Make your staycation feel like an actual getaway

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No stringent schedule. Eating new, exotic foods. Getting lost in a page-turning novel. Trying a new activity that takes you outside your comfort zone. These are the types of things that make for a memorable vacation. The problem is, you’re not traveling this year and instead are opting for the increasingly popular staycation.

Yes, you’re taking ‘paid time off’ and staying put, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have an incredible time. In fact, many of the activities that make a traditional vacation so wonderful can be emulated while at home. To help make your staycation feel like a real getaway, follow these suggestions. You’ll have just as much fun as leaving town, but you’ll save tons of money, plus get to sleep in your own bed.

Limit technology:

When you travel to a faraway location, you probably have limited-to-no access to your cell phone and email. That disconnection helps you unwind. Mimic that feeling by limiting your technology use during your staycation. Leave your phone upstairs, turn the computer off and resist grabbing the tablet. You should consider changing your email and phone message to say you’ll have limited access over the time you’re off, so people who contact you know it might be awhile until you get back to them.

Escape with a destination-specific book:

Want to feel like you’re leaving town without leaving the house? A good book can transport your mind to the destination of your choice without the hassle of planes, trains and automobiles. Kick your feet up and let yourself feel the sights and sounds that only a good book can describe so vividly.

Eat exotic and amazing fare: Every corner of the world offers cuisine that represents the culture of the people who live there. When you travel, eating these types of foods enhances the vacation experience. During your staycation, skip standard weekly meals and try new destination-inspired recipes and make a few at home.

Drink and be merry:

While you’re expanding your staycation experience with new cuisine, why not drink that way too? Complement your meals with a traditional location-inspired libation, such as a Manhattan from New York, Mai Tai from Hawaii or Vieux Carre from New Orleans. Of course there are plenty of non-alcoholic beverages to wet your whistle, too. Feel the southern charm with a traditional sweet tea, or sit down with your book and instead of a classic cup of joe, indulge in an Italian espresso or an iced coffee.

Break routine with a daily adventure:

You may be home, but that doesn’t mean you can’t explore areas of your city that you rarely venture to. By doing new things, you’ll feel like you’re really on vacation!

Staycations continue to grow in popularity, give it a try; it will truly feel like a getaway rather than just bland days off at home.